Neurodiversity is a term used to describe the range of human experience in the world, at school, at work and through social relationships. It is estimated that between 10 and 20% of the global adult population is neurodivergent, with up to 15% of the world's population considering themselves to be neurodivergent. This includes those with dyslexia, dyspraxia, Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) and Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD). It is believed that neurodevelopmental conditions are more common among autistic people than among non-autistic (or “neurotypical”) people.
However, these conditions are not actually symptoms of autism. They can be caused by genetic and environmental factors, and can also be misdiagnosed as mental illness due to a lack of awareness. Neurodiversity can also shed light on many of the strengths of thinking differently. It is believed that those with neurodivergence are overrepresented in the fields of Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM).
By understanding neurodiversity, we can better appreciate the range of human experience and create an inclusive environment for all.