Focus Groups

Note: we have completed the current round of focus groups and are not currently recruiting. If you would like more information please contact us via email at


ReASoN is a special interest research group which was originally funded by Emerging Minds (UK Research and Innovation), focused on the mental health of neurodivergent students and staff in higher education (HE).

As part of our research, we ran focus groups that aimed to investigate the experiences, support priorities and research priorities of neurodivergent students and recent graduates in higher education in the UK.



At least 8% of HE students are neurodiverse in some way and neurodiverse students are more likely to experience mental health problems at university. But to date little research has been done in this area and does not ask students for their own priorities.

This was a gap we aimed to fill!



Our groups were run by neurodiverse lead facilitators, and a co-host.

To make these sessions more inclusive there were four 1 hour sessions which had 2-6 neurodiverse individuals per group.

Our main questions focused on:

  • What are the support priorities of neurodiverse UK HE students?
  • What are the research priorities of neurodiverse UK HE students?

And we focused our discussions on four key areas:

  1. Why participants chose to participate in this study.
  2. Participants’ experiences (both positive and negative) as a neurodivergent student in higher education.
  3. What participants’ universities could have done to better support their needs and improve their experience as a neurodivergent student.
  4. What areas that participants as neurodivergent students or recent graduates consider to be research priorities on the topic of neurodiversity and mental health in higher education.



We recruited current students and recent students that graduated up to 5 years ago.


Our Findings

One of our focus group leaders, Sumeiyah Koya ( gave us an overview of the common themes emerging from focus groups in our February Monthly meeting. Please see the ‘Monthly Meetings’ tab for a summary of the meeting, or our ‘Resources’ tab for Sumeiyah’s slides.