The Autism Endorsement for Teachers certificate program includes both coursework and a field experience for licensed special education teachers to acquire the competencies necessary to conduct assessments, develop appropriate individualized education programs, provide specially designed instruction. Students develop skills to coordinate related services and consult and collaborate with other educators, including general education teachers, to teach students with autism.
Eligibility for Autism Endorsement
To be eligible for the autism endorsement, applicants must hold the pre-requisite Massachusetts teaching license; complete all of the curriculum and field experiences; and be endorsed through the DESE ELAR portal by Endicott’s Licensure Officer.
Prerequisite License for Autism Endorsement
Educators who hold one of the following licenses* at either the Initial or Professional level:
- Teacher of Students with Moderate Disabilities (PreK-8; 5-12)
- Teacher of Students with Severe Disabilities (All)
- Teacher of the Deaf and Hard-of-Hearing (All)
- Teacher of the Visually Impaired (All)
*Educators with comparable licenses may satisfy the prerequisite license requirement. For example, licenses such as Children with Severe Special Needs, Intensive Special Needs, Teacher of Special School and Classes and Special Needs.
Field Experiences for Autism Endorsement
There are two ways to meet the required field experiences component of the endorsement:
- Complete a 150 hour field based experience of which at least 75 hours must be in an inclusive school setting.
- For teachers with an appropriate prerequisite license and at least one year of teaching experience with students with autism; completion of a 75 hour field based experience, of which at least 50 must be in an inclusive school based setting.
Distinction from the Institute for Behavioral Studies Certificate in Autism
The Autism Teacher’s Endorsement is a curriculum and field experience, regulated by the MA Department of Elementary & Secondary Education, for licensed public school educators in the state of Massachusetts only. No master’s degree is required. The certificate program is an in-depth program that focuses on the use of ABA to serve the needs of individuals with ASD. Either program may serve as a pipeline for Endicott degrees in special education, Autism and Applied Behavior Analysis, or Applied Behavior Analysis. The autism certificate is often pursued by behavior analysts, speech therapists, or others who are interested in additional graduate coursework in the area of autism spectrum disorders, and who seek a credential specifying content knowledge in this area.