Temple Grandin, PhD, Discusses Her Expertise With Autism


In a YouTube video entitled “My Knowledge with Autism,” Temple Grandin, Ph.D., professor of Animal Science at Colorado State University, speaks candidly about her encounter with autism. Grandin talks about her childhood fraught with tantrums, rocking, and language delay.

She describes the autism spectrum, as “a continuum of traits,” and points out strengths, such as talents autistic kids may possibly possess. In specific, she urges parents and caregivers to develop talents rather than “pound away at the deficit.”

Grandin talks about how Silicon Valley inventions, such as the I-pod, were conceived by those with Aspergers’ syndrome, a type of autism. And she mentions that productive Aspergers in Silicon Valley had parents who discovered apprenticeship programs for their eight-year old children, who excelled in subjects, such as personal computer programming.

She also discusses some of the deficits in the autism spectrum, particularly sensory issues and how to deal with them. For example, some autistic young children see flickering lights coming from their computer systems. This dilemma can be solved by allowing students with autism to use laptops.

Grandin points out that kids are often teased at school and want to discover other kids who share their interests. For instance, Grandin explains that though it was painful to be teased in higher school, she interacted with kids who liked and rode horses like she, and they did not tease her.

Close to the end of the initial half of the lecture, Grandin explains the significance of teaching values and encouraging youngsters to “do great factors,” such as assisting out in a soup kitchen.

In the second half of the lecture, Grandin talks about careers that may be appropriate for autistic people and the importance of mentors. She also mentions the weighted blanket and vest for calming, therapies, and the advantage of a appropriate diet regime and workout.

She discusses medicines prescribed for autism and says, “You have to figure out what works.”Every single case is distinct.”

Grandin has written numerous books, like Thinking in Images: My Life with Autism.