Skip to Content (Press Enter)

Training Future Educators

Research, clinical service and community involvement are at the forefront of the CSUF Center for Autism, one of eight College of Education centers providing University students with opportunities to engage in immersive learning experiences.

The center consists of the Applied Development Core, housed in the College of Health and Human Development, and the Education Core in the College of Education.

"Interfacing with community partners and CSUF faculty, students work as center associates in a variety of real-world environments that prepare them for future roles and responsibilities," said Erica Howell, co-director of the center and associate professor of special education.

"Our students assist in programs for children and adults on the autism spectrum and gain experience presenting and publishing in scholarly forums," she added. "Most of the center associates are heading into fields where they plan to serve individuals with autism, and the center provides hands-on opportunities to develop skills and understanding of this population so they are more effective professionals."

Long a standard of excellence in California's teacher preparation programs, Cal State Fullerton's College of Education trains future educators to meet the needs and expectations of our communities. Teacher preparation includes teaching, instructional design, school administration and community college leadership, as well as engaging in partnerships with local school districts and community organizations.

One of these organizations, the McCoy Rigby Conservatory of the Arts, has partnered with the Center for Autism to create the No Limits program, which offers creative classes — including dance, musical theater and tumbling — for children with special needs. Through the program, said Howell, "Cal State Fullerton students work as teaching assistants, supporting the lead teacher and peer mentors in facilitating positive behaviors and appropriate social skills, and increasing communication with individuals with disabilities."

Philanthropic support allows for the continuation of such programs, reinforcing the University's reputation for rigorous, research-based practice.

To contribute to the Applied Security Analysis Program, contact Enrique Gonzalez, senior director of development for Mihaylo College of Business and Economics, at 657-278-2857 or