Penn State's 12-credit Postbaccalaureate Certificate in Educating Individuals with Autism will provide you with advanced training in the area of autism spectrum disorders and will help you earn continuing education credit in your profession, such as Pennsylvania Act 48 hours.

Course topics include:

  • character and learning traits, classification systems, and special emphasis on selecting evidence-based interventions
  • applied behavioral analysis, stimulus control, punishment, prompting, fading, generalization, and maintenance as well as other issues affecting persons with autism, and their families
  • language development and communication strategies, pragmatics, communication systems, augmentative and alternative communication systems, social deficits in autism, and approaches for teaching skills
  • screening, diagnosis, identifying skills in developmental domains, such as sensory, oral motor, and communication

Program Format

Instruction for all of the courses in this program is conducted online. Courses are designed so that you can complete the work from your home or office, making the program convenient and accessible for you as a working professional. Specifically, instructors will deliver content via lectures and interviews on streaming video or DVD, voice-over slides and graphics, and other multimedia technologies. Course content will be supplemented by text and article readings and online activities and quizzes. Students and instructors will communicate primarily via online discussion forums and email.

You will be required to identify an appropriate proctor to administer quizzes and exams as required in each course. Detailed instructions will be included with the course materials.

 

Course List - Postbaccalaureate Certificate in Educating Individuals with Autism 

Required Courses
Title Abbreviation Description Credits
Introduction to Autism Spectrum Disorders SPLED 461 This course will include an overview of characteristics and learning traits, classification systems, assessment strategies/issues, approaches, and interventions related to individuals with autism spectrum disorders (ASD). Special emphasis will be given to selecting evidence-based practices and enhancing collaboration among individuals with ASD, their families, and supporting professionals. 3 credits
Autism and Applied Behavior Analysis SPLED 462 The course content includes an overview of basic principles of applied behavior analysis (ABA) and elements of empiricism in education settings. Basic principles include reinforcement, stimulus control, punishment, prompting, fading, generalization, and maintenance. Special emphasis will be given to the application of ABA principles to classroom settings. A historical perspective will be outlined concerning the application of ABA to individuals with autism as well as the use of ethics in treatment and education. Empirically-based interventions for persons with autism will be covered including discrete trial, analysis of verbal behavior, and direct instruction. Finally, issues affecting persons with autism and their families will be addressed including functional analysis, sleeping, eating, toileting/grooming, and determining credibility of treatments. 3 credits
Communication and Social Competence SPLED 463 Language development and communication strategies, issues, pragmatics, communications systems, augmentative and alternative communication systems (AAC), social deficits in autism, and approaches for teaching social skills. 3 credits
Assessment and Curriculum SPLED 464 Types of assessment, such as screening, diagnosis, and identification of skills in development diagnosis; identification of skills in developmental domains, such as sensory, oral motor, play, and communication; practical strategies detailing what to teach based on assessment results; and an overview of curricula approaches and and materials. 3 credits

Course Availability

If you're ready to see when your courses will be offered, visit our public LionPATH course search (opens in new window) to start planning ahead.