Our Parent Advocacy course is now available on the Autism Training Academy website. This 30-minute course is designed for parents and caregivers who are looking for tools to better understand:
parent advocacy in different environments
the relationship between advocacy and leadership
the ways in which you can be a strong parent advocate for your child
how to support your child to be their own self-advocate
This course includes games and tools you can utilize immediately. Resources are available at the end of the course. Completion of this course earns you a digital badge you can use on your CV, website, or on LinkedIn.
I am proud to share that my lovely friends Judy Singer (credited with coining the term neurodiversity), Dr. Kristen Gillespie-Lynch (ally and autism researcher extraordinaire) and I are speaking about ND/UD/Intersectionality. It’s free and all are welcome to join us for an interactive discussion. Here is the link to register: https://www.eventbrite.com/…/is-universal-design-enough…. Feel free to share.
We’re excited to announce the launch of the Autism Training Academy. The Autism Training Academy offers research-based, online, and asynchronous micro-trainings about autism and neurodiversity. All our courses are designed by Autistic experts and our brilliant allies. We currently have a free 20-minute online course called ‘Introduction to Autism’. This course is for everyone who wants to learn more about autism. Families, friends, and allies of Autistic individuals as well as those who want to be educated to understand and appreciate Autistic individuals will find this micro-training valuable.
The Academy also offers the 1-hour fee-based course ‘Introduction to Autism and Universal Design for Faculty’. This course is suitable for all faculty members in higher education who want to understand and appreciate Autistic students in their classrooms and how a Universal Design framework can be of great benefit to Autistic students and all students.
All courses can be accessed at www.autismtraining.academy. The next fee-based course ‘Parent Advocacy’ is currently being designed as part of our leadership series. Other courses in the leadership series will include: self-advocacy and your rights as an Autistic research partner. Please visit our website often as more free and fee-based courses will be made available on the website on an ongoing basis.
Kelly Bron Johnson and Doug Blecher were kind enough to interview me for their podcast. Listen to this fun 26:37 minute interview about ableism, race, and the education system. That’s right…I said fun.
I am thrilled to be a part of Autism Spain’s country-wide conference on “The education of students with ASD during the covid-19 pandemic. Analysis, challenges and proposals for the future”. I will be speaking on my subject-matter-expertise: Autism & The Pandemic- Utilizing Universal Design skills to advance online and face-to-face teaching for Autistic students and all students in higher education. Thank you to Maria Verde Cagiao and the team for an excellent conference so far. I look forward to speaking on December 3rd, 2020. http://www.autismo.org.es/actualidad
I am humbled and honoured to be nominated for the 2021 Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion (EDI) awards at the University of Calgary. The award recognize and celebrate inspiring students, faculty, and staff who are working to advance a more accessible, equitable, diverse, and inclusive university. The EDI Awards recognize outstanding achievement in a practice, event, applied research, policy, program, or other activities that foster equitable, sustainable and measurable change for those who traditionally have been under-represented (women, visible/racialized minorities, Indigenous peoples, persons with disabilities, and LGBTQ2S) on campus. The Awards recognize ongoing work, or an outstanding accomplishment at a point in time. Deep gratitude goes out to my supervisors Dr. Shelleyann Scott and Dr. Don Scott for being fierce allies who worked hard to recognize and remove disabling barriers so I might have the opportunity to rise.
Thank you CUNY and Project REACH for the opportunity to share our work on autism and UD Training for faculty based on our research (www.autismresearch.international). It was an excellent group of faculty members, community members, and interested allies. Thank you for the brilliant questions. We look forward to your feedback and to learning how you’re using UD in your teaching & learning practice moving forward.
My formal educational journey at the University of Calgary was completed on November 12th, 2020 when I passed my final defence for the doctorate of education in leadership, policy, and governance in a post-secondary context. The purpose of my research was to explore how Canadian higher education leaders, faculty members, and professional staff can enhance services and outcomes for Autistic students. The study was situated within the pragmatic paradigm and employed a multilevel, sequential, mixed method design. The mixed methods approach included a total of 111 responses, namely, online questionnaires (n=74) and synchronous or asynchronous, semi-structured interviews (n=37). The sample included a total of 79 participants across four stakeholder groups: university middle level leaders (n=23), faculty members (including two who were themselves Autistic, n=16), professional staff members working with Autistic students in offices such as accessibility services, equity and inclusion services, human rights, or student advocacy (n=10), and Autistic students or individuals who had experienced university studies (n=30).
I am grateful to my talented supervisors Dr. Shelleyann Scott & Dr. Don Scott and to my family for the support, love, and wisdom that buoyed me throughout the journey. As a doctor, I continue my research journey working with Dr. Kristen Gillespie-Lynch and our 16 cross-institutional collaborators studying autism & UD Training for faculty (www.autismresearch.international). As a speaker and subject-matter-expert, I continue to provide insights into policies and practices at higher education institutions that affect Autistic students and I continue to provide Universal Design training for faculty members of colleges and universities around the world.
The newly appointed Autistic Researchers Committee (ARC) of INSAR held a workshop in August 2020 to briefly introduce our committee and gather suggestions from the community regarding our future directions and plans as we strive to promote autistic involvement in research and the inclusiveness of INSAR. We welcomed all interested attendees, whether they were researchers or community members and whether they were neurodivergent or neurotypical.
I am honoured to serve on the panel at the College Autism Summit on Oct 28th, 2020 discussing the experiences of life on the spectrum on a college campus. As part of the College Autism Network Virtual Association of Scholars (CANVAS), this summit brings together scholars, practitioners, administrators, employers, self-advocates and their family members to discuss evidence-driven strategies that help support college students with autism and related learning differences. Transition to college, experience while in college, and transition to employment and independent living are all areas of focus. https://www.naspa.org/events/college-autism-summit