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Māori and autism: A scoping review

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posted on 19.06.2021, 02:24 by Jessica TupouJessica Tupou, S Curtis, D Taare-Smith, Ali GlasgowAli Glasgow, Hannah WaddingtonHannah Waddington
Cultural groups may vary considerably in their understandings of autism spectrum disorder and approaches to supporting autistic individuals. However, approaches to researching, identifying and managing autism are largely dominated by Western perspectives. This review provides an overview of the literature related to autism and Māori, the indigenous people of Aotearoa/New Zealand. A search of the peer-reviewed and grey literature identified 273 potentially relevant publications, and 13 of these met inclusion criteria. The included publications addressed questions related to Māori understandings of autism, Māori prevalence rates and diagnostic and support services for Māori. Findings suggest broad differences in Māori and Western understandings of autism and slightly higher autism prevalence rates for Māori than for non-Māori New Zealanders. The need for diagnostic and support services that are both effective and culturally appropriate for Māori was also highlighted. These findings are discussed in relation to implications for future research and the provision of services for autistic Māori. Lay abstract: Most current approaches to identifying, researching and managing autism are based on Western views and understandings. However, different cultural groups may understand and approach autism differently. We searched a wide range of websites, academic journals and other sources for published information related to autism and Māori, the indigenous people of Aotearoa/New Zealand. Our search identified 13 publications that addressed questions related to Māori understandings of autism, Māori prevalence rates and diagnostic and support services for Māori. Overall, we found broad differences in Māori and Western understandings of autism and slightly higher autism prevalence rates for Māori than for non-Māori New Zealanders. Findings also highlighted a need for diagnostic and support services that are both effective and culturally appropriate for Māori. We discuss what these findings might mean for future research and the provision of services for Māori with autism.

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Preferred citation

Tupou, J., Curtis, S., Taare-Smith, D., Glasgow, A. & Waddington, H. (2021). Māori and autism: A scoping review. Autism, 136236132110186-136236132110186. https://doi.org/10.1177/13623613211018649

Journal title

Autism

Publication date

01/01/2021

Pagination

136236132110186-136236132110186

Publisher

SAGE Publications

Publication status

Published

Online publication date

04/06/2021

ISSN

1362-3613

eISSN

1461-7005

Language

en

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