College / University Partners
Increasing the knowledge and skills of families and professionals serving individuals with ASD requires a comprehensive approach to training and development. Preservice and inservice coursework offered through institutes of higher education for college credit is a vital component of professional development. Given the enhanced focus on ensuring the use of evidence based practice with individuals with ASD, coursework, certificate programs, and degree programs are required to enable service providers to engage in lifelong learning.
VCU-ACE collaborates with a number of institutes of higher education to develop a comprehensive program in professional development. Collaboration is essential with this endeavor to ensure coursework meets the needs of all stakeholders serving this group and is accessible to anyone, regardless of physical location. Two consortia have been created to address professional development needs related to service delivery for individuals with ASD.
State Autism Professional Development Consortium
One training initiative is the enhancement of coursework and programs in autism spectrum disorder and evidence-based practice that can be taken for credit at universities and colleges throughout the Commonwealth. The SAPDC is a group consisting of VCU-ACE, VDOE, and representatives from higher education. Below is a list of colleges and universities and the representative comprising the SAPDC.
There is currently no educational licensure in autism in Virginia. Both coursework and comprehensive certificate programs in ASD are now offered at a number of colleges and universities throughout the state. The SAPDC has collected information on the existing programs and has identified gaps that exist as it relates to:
- Appropriate coursework for all stakeholders including special education teachers, general education teachers, paraprofessionals, administrators, psychologists, related service personnel, social workers, and parents.
- Coursework that is accessible and convenient for anyone in the state.
- Awareness of programs and tuition assistance.
We maintain a list and description of the current programs in Virginia.
The partners in the SAPDC include:
- George Mason University - Vicki Spencer
- J. Sargeant Reynolds Community College - Eric Barna
- Longwood University - Rachel Matthews
- Lynchburg University - Gena Barnhill
- Mary Baldwin College - Rachel Potter
- Old Dominion University - Cheryl Baker, Ann Maydosz, Jonna Bobzien
- Radford University - Leslie Daniel
- Rappahannock Community College - Noel Woolard
- Regent University - Hope Jordan
- University of Mary Washington - Norah Hooper, Nicole Myers
- Virginia Commonwealth University - Dawn Hendricks