Perceptions of Disabilities: How Visibility and Perceptions of Disabilities Impacts Treatment and Overall Behaviors

Author: Andrew Austin
Major: Communication Studies and Psychology
Approved: Spring 2021
Status: In progress

My project is focused on the perceptions both able-bodied and disabled individuals have regarding disabilities. I want to take note of the potential similarities and differences between the two groups and how they treat people with a disability.  I also want to find out if how caring/helpful someone is depending on how visible the disability is. Disabled people are seen as intellectually challenged or incapable of doing most things, I want to see if that is true, or if that is something that has gotten better over time. How a person should be treated/tended to should not be dependent on the perception of how “helpless” they appear but rather based on the true severity of the disability.