'Closer to my world': Children with autism spectrum disorder tell their stories through photovoice

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One of the challenges in doing research with individuals with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) is the difficulty in communication. This study employed a modified form of photovoice with a group of young people with ASD in Hanoi, Vietnam, to provide a means of meaningful participation in research about their lives, experiences, and needs. We describe the process of conducting photovoice with nine children with ASD from June 2011 to May 2012, many of whom had limited verbal communication skills. More than 2100 photos were taken by children. Undertaking photovoice with children with ASD required some modification of the method. In particular we consider the difficulties in analysing and interpreting the photographs produced by children with ASD. Due to the ambiguities of the visual images produced we found content analysis of photographs alone was inadequate. There was a discrepancy between our initial interpretations of the photographs and our understandings derived from information from interviews with children, parents, carers, and our own observations. Our study points to the need to understand context through multiple methods and the potential of photovoice as a means to mediate communication and participation in research for groups with communication difficulties.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)546-563
Number of pages18
JournalGlobal Public Health
Issue number5-6
Publication statusPublished - 2016


  • Visual methods
  • photovoice
  • autism spectrum disorder
  • children
  • Vietnam

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