Special Education
Graduate

Autism Spectrum Disorders C.A.G.S. (with Endorsement Option)

Special Education C.A.G.S.

TestNanho S. Vander Hart, Ph.D Director

At Assumption, we prepare compassionate special educators and related school professionals. Our rigorous, comprehensive program has been “approved with distinction” by Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (DESE)!

Our goal is to help beginning special educators to achieve success, and to provide experienced teachers with an opportunity to extend and refine their knowledge and skills. The Certificate of Advanced Graduate Study (C.A.G.S.) in Special Education: Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD) program is an 18-credit program which has been developed closely aligned with the state guidelines and the best practice recommended by the Council for Exceptional Children (CEC). Graduates of the program will be better able to understand students with ASD, to conduct assessments, to collaborate with other school professionals effectively, and to provide evidence-based practice to their students with ASD through field-based experiences.  

An Exceptional Program at an Affordable Tuition- $680 per credit


Graduate Virtual Information Sessions



Autism Spectrum Disorders C.A.G.S. (with Endorsement Option) Program Contact

Stephanie E. Plotkin Murin, M.Ed.

Assistant Director of Graduate Admissions
508-767-7105 Admissions House - Room 203

Nanho S. Vander Hart, Ph.D

Associate Professor, Education, Director of Special Education, Director of Transition Specialist Program
508-767-7380 Kennedy Memorial Hall - Room 157

Sabine Prizio

Administrative Assistant to Graduate Programs
508-767-7297 Kennedy Hall - Room 169

Program Curriculum

    1. Students will effectively communicate subject matter knowledge based on peer reviewed research related to autism spectrum disorders.
    2. Students will acquire advanced knowledge of specialized and individualized instructional strategies to meet the needs of pupils with autism spectrum disorders across subject areas and grade levels.
    3. Students will demonstrate the pedagogical skills necessary to be effective educators of pupils with autism spectrum disorders in the least restrictive environment.
  • SED/ASD 600 Foundations and Characteristics of Autism Spectrum Disorders
    PSY/SED 568 Behavioral Assessment and Interventions
    OR
    ABA 600 Behavioral and Functional Assessment
    SED/ASD 620 Educational Assessment and Programs: Autism Spectrum Disorders (Prerequisite: SED/ASD 600 or equivalent)
    OR
    ABA 601 Behavior-Analytic Interventions I and ABA 602 Behavior-Analytic Interventions II (for non-endorsement students only; Prerequisite ABA 500 or equivalent)
    SED/ASD 640 Collaboration and Coordination: Autism Spectrum Disorders (Prerequisite: SED/ASD 600 or equivalent)
    SED/ASD 680* Field Experience and Seminar I: Working with Students with Autism Spectrum Disorders (Prerequisites: SED/ASD 600 and PSY/SED 568 or ABA 600 OR taken concurrently)
    SED/ASD 690* Field Experience and Seminar II: Working with Students with Autism Spectrum Disorders (Prerequisites: SED/ASD 620 and 640 OR taken concurrently)

    *Endorsement candidates only.  Prerequisite license: An Initial or Professional license as a Teacher of Students with Moderate Disabilities, Teacher of Students with Severe Disabilities, Teacher of the Deaf and Hard-of-Hearing, or Teaching of the Visually Impaired as indicated in 603 CMR 7.14(5)(a)

    Students who are not interested in, or not eligible for, the state credential may enroll for the certificate only.  They need to take six (6) CR electives in lieu of field experience and seminar (i.e., SED/ASD 680 & 690).

    Electives:

    EDU 515 Diversity in Schooling
    SED 587 Advanced Application of Positive Behavior Supports
    SED 589 Seminar: Research and Practice in Positive Behavior Supports
    SED 700 Directed Study
    TRS 700 Transition Education and Services
    ABA 500 Principles of Learning and Behavior Analysis
    ABA 503 Behavior Analysis and Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities

A Committed Faculty

Nanho S. Vander Hart, Ph.D
Program Director Associate Professor, Education Director of Special Education Director of Transition Specialist Program

A broad range of academic options

Pursue a degree in criminology. Begin your journey to become a medical doctor or lawyer. Minor in music. With 35 majors and 47 minors to choose from, Assumption offers degree options to fit every interest and career ambition.


Admission Requirements

General Graduate Studies Admissions Requirements

  • Graduate Application
  • Three Letters of Recommendation
  • Official Transcript(s)
  • Personal Statement
  • Current Resume
  • TOEFL or IELTS for applicants whose native language is not English

Apply today

Prerequisites: To be accepted into the C.A.G.S. program, you must have: A master’s degree in Special Education or a related field of study from an accredited college or university For Massachusetts Autism Spectrum Endorsement: Massachusetts Initial or Professional teacher license in on of the following:

  • Teacher of Students with Moderate Disabilities
  • Teacher of Students with Severe Disabilities
  • Teacher of the Deaf and Hard-of-Hearing
  • Teacher of the Visually Impaired
Application Requirements:
  • Completed Application Dated & Signed
  • Three letters of recommendation are required* – one professional and at least one academic.
  • Official Transcript(s)
  • Personal Statement
  • Current Resume
  • TOEFL or IELTS (for applicants whose native language is not English)
*We strongly recommend at least one academic letter of recommendation; the remaining letters may be professional. All recommendations may be professional if an academic letter is not feasible. However, all letters should address the student’s ability to complete graduate-level academic work.


Graduate Research Symposium

Assumption University Graduate School Annual Symposium showcases research, innovative projects, successful case study, and creative work of graduate students and recent alums from every graduate program. We offer all graduate students in every program an opportunity to present their excellent work on diverse topics.

Veterans at Assumption

Assumption University recognizes that servicemen and women have demonstrated great courage and made tremendous sacrifices in service to our nation and its people. The University has introduced a number of programs and services to assist veterans during the application process and while veterans are attending Assumption. We also have a lounge designated only for our veteran students. Assumption University is committed to maintaining recognition as a Military Friendly institution.  We strive to eliminate barriers to success for our Service Members, Veterans, and their qualified dependents.

Program Approved with Distinction

Our program has been “approved with distinction” by Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (DESE)! The competency-based program is founded upon the principles of effective instruction and the philosophy of inclusive education. Accordingly, students in the program develop a repertoire of instructional, diagnostic, consultative, and collaborative skills, and strategies critical to the role. They also develop an understanding of the full continuum of services available to individuals with exceptionalities.

Programs Related to Autism Spectrum Disorders C.A.G.S. (with Endorsement Option)