Specialization (9 credits)

  • I-SPAN is a graduate-level program that prepares professionals to work with individuals on the autism spectrum across the lifespan. 
  • The three-course sequence examines contemporary topics related to best practices in person-centered support of individuals on the autism spectrum in multiple settings.
  • I-SPAN is open to graduate-level matriculated and non-matriculated students in a variety of disciplines, including speech-language pathology, education, social work, occupational therapy, and physical therapy. 
  • Non-matriculated students with bachelor's degrees can take I-SPAN courses for continuing education credits at half the price of regular course tuition to get a continuing education certificate. Fill out the Autism Sequence Approval form.

I-SPAN is Ideal For

  • Matriculated or non-matriculated graduate-level students in any of Nazareth's master's degree programs who are seeking a specialization in autism.
  • Anyone who wants to be better prepared to teach, parent, or support individuals on the autism spectrum.

Career Information

  • The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's Autism and Developmental Disabilities Monitoring Network reported that an estimated one in 44 children in the United States has been identified with an autism spectrum disorder.
  • Supporting individuals on the autism spectrum requires specialized knowledge and skills in evidence-based practices and there is a continued shortage of highly qualified professionals in this field.
  • Employers in disciplines such as education, speech language pathology, nursing, social work, physical therapy, occupational therapy and the medical professions are seeking candidates who have this specialized knowledge.


Grants, scholarships, veterans benefits, partner benefits, loans, and undergraduate loan forgiveness are options for paying for education graduate degrees. Autism certificate program tuition >

What to Expect

  • Work and study collaboratively across disciplines
  • Three specific courses are required (detailed below under Curriculum), offered in the evening.
  • Receive a local certificate of specialization in autism from Nazareth College upon completion
  • Earn continuing education units or professional development credits upon completion


This specialization requires these three evening courses in the following sequence:

  • Exploring Autism from Multiple Perspectives (fall semester) 
  • Autism Supports Across the Lifespan (spring semester)
  • Autism: A Contemporary Lens (May/June — summer Session A)

Registration Process

  • Current Naz students: Talk to your academic program director to determine whether you are eligible to enroll in this program.
  • Non-matriculated students (Rochester community residents): Complete the Certificate Application.
  • Registration occurs on a rolling basis for fall and spring terms. Starting classes in the fall is recommended.
  • If you have questions, contact the I-SPAN directors listed on this page.

Tuition and Fees

See Nazareth's fees and tuition per credit hour. Program costs »


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