The sustained increase in prevalence rates of students with autism spectrum disorders (ASD) has led to a corresponding growth in interest among teacher educators on how to prepare teachers to work effectively with this student population. However, current research efforts on effective preparation in the area of ASD are only emerging and have not included targeted collaboration with state departments of education. In this study, a statewide survey of special education directors in the southwest United States was conducted to determine which competencies and licensure requirements would be necessary to prepare educators teaching students with ASD. Findings suggest that the majority of the 124 respondents indicated a preference for an autism endorsement added on to a special education certificate and described knowledge of characteristics of ASD, behavior management, and communication skills development as competencies as most essential for teachers working with students on the autism spectrum. As a model for university and state collaboration, implications for teacher preparation programs are described.
|Original language||English (US)|
|Number of pages||10|
|Journal||International Journal of Special Education|
|State||Published - 2013|
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