Using Technology and Community Partnerships to Improve Educator Preparation: Changing the Landscape for Individuals with Autism Spectrum Disorder

Using Technology and Community Partnerships to Improve Educator Preparation: Changing the Landscape for Individuals with Autism Spectrum Disorder

Kristin S. Lierheimer (Bowling Green State University, USA), Mary M. Murray (Bowling Green State University, USA), Deborah G. Wooldridge (Bowling Green State University, USA) and Sheila Smith (Ohio Center for Autism and Low Incidence, USA)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-5225-0034-6.ch018
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Abstract

This chapter describes how an institution of higher education, Bowling Green State University (BGSU), partnered with the Ohio Center for Autism and Low Incidence (OCALI), a quasi-governmental agency, to meet the training needs of the local, state, national, and international community by providing an online autism spectrum disorders (ASD) certificate program. This curriculum incorporates and builds on OCALI's numerous on-line learning modules specifically focused on ASD that were developed by experts in the field of autism. Today over one hundred individuals from eight states and three countries have completed the comprehensive certificate ASD program through BGSU. This program is one example of how technology has broadened the outreach of educational preparation in ASD from local to national and international audiences.
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Prevalence Of Autism Spectrum Disorder

Individuals with ASD come from all racial, ethnic, and socioeconomic groups, and include both males and females, although the majority of individuals are males. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (2012), the percentage of children being diagnosed with ASD has increased by 78% since 2007. In 2007, the CDC estimated that ASD was occurring at a rate of one in 150 children and most recently the CDC estimated that ASD is occurring in one in 88 children (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 2012). In March 2014, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention issued their ADDM autism prevalence report. The report concluded that the prevalence of autism has raised to 1 in every 68 births in the United States and almost 1 in 54 boys (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 2014).

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