VCU Post-baccalaureate Certificate in Autism Spectrum Disorders

The Department of Special Education and Disability Policy at VCU offers a Post-baccalaureate Certificate in Autism Spectrum Disorders that prepares personnel to educate and support individuals with autism spectrum disorders in the educational setting from early intervention through adult services.

The certificate program trains participants in the wide range of competencies necessary for the provision of effective educational programming. The course sequence enables personnel to develop comprehensive knowledge and experience in assessment, teaching strategies, and curriculum development. Upon successful completion of the certificate program, participants will be able to:

  • Describe the primary and secondary characteristics of autism spectrum disorders and the impact on communication, socialization, sensory responses, patterns of behavior, and learning style throughout the lifespan
  • Understand the concerns of families of individuals with autism spectrum disorders and describe strategies and provide resources to help address these concerns
  • Understand and apply theories and research that form the basis of curriculum development and instructional practice
  • Assess student ability and develop individualized programs that use evidence-based practice to support and enhance learning across environments and across areas of development and need
  • Describe the behavior of individuals with autism spectrum disorders in terms of its function and identify how to provide positive behavioral support in order to replace existing problem behaviors or prevent the development of new problem behaviors
  • Provide environmental supports, structure, and technology adaptations to provide optimal learning and independence for individuals with autism spectrum disorders across environments

Applicants

The certificate in autism spectrum disorders is geared toward teachers, potential teachers, and related service personnel; however, it is available to all professionals working in human services who wish to gain expertise in this area. All applicants must hold a bachelor's degree in any area related to education, social work, psychology or human services.

Curriculum

Participants are required to earn 12 graduate credits as outlined:

  • SEDP 532 Understanding Autism Spectrum Disorders (3 credits)
  • SEDP 634 Assessment, Curriculum and Teaching Methods for Autism Spectrum Disorders (3 credits)
  • SEDP 635 Supporting Behavior and Social Skills for Autism Spectrum Disorders (3 credits)
  • SEDP 638 Instructional Design and Field Experience for Autism Spectrum Disorders (3 credits)

For more information

For more information about the Post-baccalaureate Certificate in Autism Spectrum Disorders at VCU, go to the website.

Contact Information:

Dawn Hendricks, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor, School of Education
Department of Special Education and Disability Policy
autisminfo@vcu.edu