Graduate Certificate of Education (Autism)

Supporting individuals with Autism and their carers across the lifespan.

The Graduate Certificate of Education (Autism) is designed to prepare educators to support individuals with Autism within their educational context. This certificate is created for educators in mainstream and other non-specialised settings.

The Graduate Certificate moves student perspectives away from the ‘one size fits all’ toolbox, instead challenging and supporting students to deepen their knowledge to apply a range of educational strategies to support individuals with Autism. Using co-constructed content and individualised learning perspectives, the certificate requires students to reflect deeply upon the important voice of lived experience and seeing the individual as a person first.

A deep understanding of the attributes and challenges of individuals with Autism and their carers managed over the lifespan deepens participants’ knowledge to inform education practices. This is achieved by using a ‘person first’ approach. The certificate is focussed for students to increase understanding of Autism, develop and apply positive support skills to effectively engage learners in a range of educational environments.

Experiential learning embedded in the course provides students with a range of perspectives of individuals with Autism through problem solving and scenario based pedagogy. An examination of the historical and theoretical components of Autism in addition to twenty first century teaching and learning is a core component. Further, this focus prepares students to create supportive learning environments to shift away from traditional views of Autism to contemporary practice and authentic inclusive education.

CRICOS CODE
095592G

Key Study Outcomes:

About the School

This course is delivered by Torrens University Australia Ltd, ABN 99 154 937 005, RTO 41343, CRICOS 03389E.

Read more about Torrens University Australia

Torrens University Australia

Course Delivery

Can’t find what you’re looking for? Contact a Course Advisor

Workload and Assessment

No. of timetabled hours per week:

It is expected that each subject, whether studied online or on-campus, will involve a combined total of 120 hours of structured and self-directed learning, which equates to approximately 10 hours a week for subjects over 12-week trimesters.

Typical assessment includes:

Assessments within the Graduate Certificate of Education (Autism) vary in submission outcome, including (but not limited to):
Reflective journal/Blog
Portfolio
Report/Essay
Presentation/Pitch
Research
Collaboration/Facilitation of discussion
Negotiated tasks
Scenario responses
Problem based tasks

Subject Information

With a deeper understanding of Autism from the perspective of person first, theory and lifespan complexities, students are challenged to reimagine learning practices. In this subject, students analyse the impact of globalisation and in turn, the development of information, education and support. Using a critical eye to examine past and present systems, processes and support in education across the globe, students create an inclusive classroom. Analysing a range of pedagogy, learning environments and school community presented in the subject, students recreate learning for individuals with Autism and their carers in the classroom. For example, special school to mainstream conversations in the education and Autism sector. The design will encompass the person first and best practice support for an individual with Autism.

Further, identification of the allied health professions and their interaction in education forms a vital component in this subject to ensure team based, best practice support is understood. Students will identify the role of each allied health professional and a range of alternative therapies. Using this information along with the person first perspective, students will examine the benefits or deficits of each resource used in the present day. In turn, students explore the needs of educators, their challenges and support structures. By understanding the welfare of all carers in the role of supporting an individual with Autism, highlighting the importance of resilience for the individual and carers across the lifespan.

Utilising a holistic perspective, the lifespan for an individual with Autism in the present day is explored. From diagnosis, to schooling, communication and health, the experience for an individual and their carers varies. In this subject, students consider the range of challenges across the lifespan and the differing paths Autism takes for an individual and their carers. Given the complexity and unique nature of Autism, critical thinking about the day-to-day needs of individuals encourages students to enhance person first and problem-based thinking skills. Issues such as accessibility, the range of support, choices and types of community are examined. In addition, challenges across the lifespan will be identified and analysed including communication, stigmas, misdiagnosis and co-morbidities.

In this subject, a range of interventions from past to present and varying viewpoints are critiqued in reference to person first and positive support. This aspect of the subject drives deeper thinking in relation to education philosophy. With this grounding, students reflect upon the contemporary pedagogy for supporting individuals with Autism in education. Students consider factors such as social, health, education and accessibility in the early years of life, through to housing, work, relationships and services in adult life. This comparison between historical interventions and contemporary practices across the lifespan for individuals with Autism, provides insight to the shifts in attitudes and support. Finally, the application of these complexities is introduced for a lateral thinking approach to education practices.

Contemporary practice in Autism education requires sound knowledge, understanding and support by educators to effectively create an inclusive and best practice learning environment. A movement in the disability sector advocates for individuals and their carers to have their voice heard. In this subject, students examine the shift in support for individuals with Autism and their carers. More specifically, the Autism community to move to a voice that is heard, rather than passive. The person first approach is used in this subject to introduce the problem solving skills required when supporting an individual with Autism by actively listening to their needs. Students will interact with a range of experiential perspectives of Autism, using interviews and scenarios to develop the person first approach. Interactions with the varying perspectives, experiences, challenges and aspirations in the Autism community creates a platform for students to examine bias, prejudice and assumptions. The voice of the individual with Autism and their carers in this subject unveils the importance of active listening and co-design for learning.

Further, an exploration of the evolution of Autism education, based on the medical theory in relation to diagnosis of Autism. Spanning early 1940’s to the twenty first century, introduces students to the complexity of Autism, the development of knowledge and application in education systems. This subject asks students to explore the Autism diagnosis and the impact on individuals and the Autism community. Further, students’ understanding is deepened when asked to critique the social implications, relating to discrimination, policy and practices specific to the history of Autism, using a person first perspective.

This subject challenges students to engage with a diverse range of educational technologies, with a view to critically examining the relevance and application of such technologies within their professional context. More broadly, students will engage critically with the discourses surrounding technologies in education, refining their skills of critique and analysis to articulate the principles through which educators might make informed decisions about the effectiveness and appropriateness of specific technologies for learning. The subject will provide students with the opportunity to consider specific technologies that are relevant for their professional setting, for example technologies to engage students with Autism, and/or technologies relevant to the teaching of particular disciplines.

In this subject students will analyse a variety of examples of innovative educational practice (including, for example, practices relating to the support of students with additional educational needs), critically examine the meaning of innovation and debate whether innovation can be quantified and measured. Students will be supported to identify problems/issues within education practice and will utilise tools and thinking processes designed to assist in the generation of innovative solutions. Finally, students will explore evaluation methodology as a means of analysing innovation outcomes relevant to their professional context in a systematic way.

Design thinking is an approach to innovation that involves identifying ‘problems’ or issues in a particular context, considering those who have a stake in these problems/issues, and designing a range of possible solutions that are then tested and refined in practice. In this subject, students will explore the concepts and processes of design thinking, including the origins of design thinking and its use across a range of disciplines and contexts. Following these general processes, students will then engage in a design thinking process to identify and address an issue within their own professional context. Through this design thinking process, students will engage in reflection and analysis of their professional skills, knowledge, and judgement, and ultimately arrive at an advanced understanding of their roles as innovators and leaders in education.