Honors Theses


College of Arts and Sciences


College of Arts and Sciences


Department of Anthropology and Middle Eastern Cultures


Department of Anthropology and Middle Eastern Cultures


Bachelor of Arts



Document Type

Honors Thesis


Neurodiversity is an approach that accepts and embraces neurological differences as a natural variation, and neurodivergent people are those whose brains work differently from what is considered the norm by society. This thesis examines the impact of online neurodivergent communities on the neurodivergent people that participate in them through the use of a qualitative online survey distributed via Twitter and Mastodon, a decentralized Twitter alternative. It is informed by the researcher’s experience as a neurodivergent person in these online communities and analyzes the functions that these online communities serve for the neurodivergent people who participate in them and how this participation affects them, by centering the voices of those participants and allowing us to speak for ourselves about our experiences. Based on this analysis, I argue that online communities provide neurodivergent people with a place to find friends, access vital support, and meet needs that are not being met or cannot be met offline. Participation in these supportive environments can also result in a changing self-conception, allowing neurodivergent participants to better understand themselves and accept themselves for who they are, and leading to a decrease in negative thoughts and self-hate.

Publication Date


First Advisor

Sietz, Holli

Second Advisor

Pizer, Ginger

Third Advisor

Hoffman, David