Social Interaction Experiences of Neurodivergent Individuals During the Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) Pandemic

Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D)



Date of Award

Spring 2023


The COVID-19 pandemic has dramatically altered the way individuals socialize with the integration of social distancing, isolation, mask mandates and more. This study identified themes within the interpersonal experiences and socialization of college students who identify as neurodivergent during the COVID-19 pandemic. This was examined through a qualitative phenomenological approach utilizing semi-structured interviews. Thematic analysis revealed three themes, (a) Periods of Adjustment, (b) Comfort in Familiarity, and (c) Alterations in Social Interactions. These themes described how participants had to adapt to the many precautions implemented during the pandemic, the ease of interactions with familiar individuals, and the changing social experiences faced by participants. Implications for the counseling field, limitations of the study, recommendations for future research, and conclusion of the dissertation are included.


James M. Devlin

Subject Categories

Counseling | Social and Behavioral Sciences