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Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD)

COVID-19 and Special Education

View information for educators and parents to support students with disabilities during the COVID-19 pandemic.

COVID-19 resources for special education

Definition: A child with an Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) is a child with a developmental disability significantly affecting verbal and non-verbal social communication and social interaction, generally evidenced by the age of three. Other characteristics often associated with ASD are engagement in repetitive activities and stereotyped movements, resistance to environmental changes or changes in daily routines, and unusual responses to sensory experiences.

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ASD & COVID Resources

Our team has collected resources and tools specific to ASD that may be useful during this time as you plan for students.

View the Autism & COVID

What's New

Registered Behavior Technician (RBT) Course & Frequently Asked Questions

The CDE offered RBT course application for the May session is now open! Please take this course if you intend to pursue the RBT credential. Please follow the link below to apply for the course. You will NOT receive a confirmation email after you’ve submitted your application. You will be contacted once you are admitted to the course.

RBT Application

Interested in taking the RBT Course but have a few questions before you commit? Autism Specialist Kelsey Young put together some of the frequently asked questions she receives. 

View the FAQ

Early Identification of Autism in Girls

On March 17, Susan Hepburn presented a webinar where she presented a summary of the current research concerning early emerging markers of autism in girls. She discusses the possible implications of this research for improving early childhood autism assessments in girls.

View the Early Identification of Autism in Girls webinar

Dr. Susan Hepburn


Support - Autism Education Network

The Autism Education Network is designed to provide school teams support, training, and resources to guide services for students with autism. Below are potential offerings autism network team members may provide based on the request. The level of support provided will be based on AU/school team needs as well as autism team availability.

Training (Virtual or In-Person):

The CDE autism team can create targeted, individualized trainings for an AU/school team based on current needs. These trainings can be done virtually or in-person (pending COVID guidelines), and can cover an array of topics related to autism. Trainings can be anywhere from two hours to one full day. The team does not offer individualized versions of currently offered CDE trainings (see training section below).

Field Support:

Field support is intended to offer consultation/coaching services and allows the CDE autism consultants to partner with AU/school teams to address systemic or long-standing concerns. This service supports implementation of evidence-based practices within the school setting. The consultant will work with the team to understand current needs, and then establish goals and a subsequent action plan. This plan may include up to six virtual or in-person visits (depending on need and COVID guidelines).


The CDE autism team partners with Children’s Hospital Colorado to offer support in completing functional behavior assessments (FBAs) and developing behavior intervention plans (BIPs) via virtual coaching sessions. This service is designed for teams looking to expand their skills in addressing challenging behavior (e.g., aggression, self-harm, property destruction) and can commit to recurring weekly or biweekly sessions for approximately one to two months. These sessions involve discussions, coaching, and practice implementing various forms of FBA/BIP and analyzing data. This service is recommended for teams addressing unique and intensive behaviors (e.g., considering alternative placement, behaviors that are not responding to intervention over time, behaviors that have injured staff or other students).

Resource Recommendation:

For teams looking to expand knowledge and in need of quick, potentially asynchronous learning opportunities, the CDE autism team can offer recommendations of existing resources to review. Consultants can provide individualized suggestions of webinars, modules, currently offered CDE trainings, and other related resources. To review options, please visit the webinar page to see all archived webinars, or the training section to see currently offered CDE autism team trainings.

Network Request

When completing the field request, you will be prompted to describe the needs of your program and how they relate to Colorado’s Autism Quality Indicators

Quality Indicators

​Questions about the Colorado Autism Education Network? Please contact Brooke Carson (see Specialist Contacts section below) with questions about the Autism Education Network.


The Autism Resources page include CDE guidance, resources and asynchronous training in the area of Autism Spectrum Disorders. 

View Resources


CDE provides face-to-face and online education and training in the area of autism.  You can participate in webinars presented by the Tri-State Autism Collaborative or you can access them on demand. Face to face trainings, projects, and coaching are provided in the areas of literacy and numeracy.

Training and information is available in various formats noted below.  Please note that these training workshops are reserved first for Colorado School District and Administrative Unit personnel who work directly with children with autism spectrum disorders and parents of those children. All other reservations have been added to the waiting list and you will be notified at the registration deadline if there are open spaces.

Virtual Events 

Autism Spectrum Disorder Literacy Institute, Tier 2

The Autism Literacy Institute Tier 2 training builds on content discussed in the Tier 1 training. Participants will continue to learn assessment strategies and develop deeper knowledge about best practices in literacy instruction for learners with ASD. Tier two involves opportunities for individual application as participants develop lessons for their classrooms based upon student data.

View the Tier 2 Literacy Institute flyer (PDF).

All sessions will be from 4:00 - 7:00 (MT) on the following days: 

April 7, 2021
April 15, 2021
April 21, 2021

*Attending all three sessions live is highly encouraged. The training will be recorded, but participants MUST attend at least two of the three sessions LIVE. There will be no exceptions. 

An additional option for participants to have virtual coaching from the presenters for additional clock hours for a virtual project identified during the institute.


Registration for this training has closed. 

ASD Educational Identification

The training is designed to support districts in understanding how to identify students suspected of having Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD), using evaluation tools to assess the triad of characteristics of ASD. Participants will learn how to build a body of evidence to support the identification of ASD (determining eligibility) in an educational setting (without using the ADOS).

This distance learning opportunity will be presented over four days, in three-hour segments.

View the ASD Ed ID flyer (PDF) for more details! 


Thursday, January 7, 2021
4:00 PM - 7:00 PM

Tuesday, January 19, 2021
4:00 PM - 7:00 PM

Thursday, January 28, 2021
4:00 PM - 7:00 PM

Tuesday, February 9, 2021
4:00 PM - 7:00 PM

Attending all four sessions live is highly encouraged. The training will be recorded, but participants MUST attend at least three sessions LIVE. There will be no exceptions.


Registration for this training has closed. 

Educational Identification of Complex ASD Cases: Culturally and Linguistically Responsive Evaluations

Children from culturally and linguistically minoritized populations are more likely to be misidentified or receive a delayed educational identification of ASD. This workshop will provide school professionals with advanced training pertaining to considerations regarding ASD assessment practices when working with traditionally underserved children, including children that are economically vulnerable, racially/ethnically minoritized and linguistically diverse. In addition, participants will receive training in differentiating ASD from other disabilities. Further, information will be shared regarding laws and recommendations pertaining to addressing significant disproportionality among children with ASD. This training will be presented by Dr. Bryn Harris from the University of Colorado Denver. Dr. Harris has extensive expertise in this content area.

See the flyer for more information! 


April 13, 2021 from 4:00 - 7:00 PM

April 20, 2021 from 4:00 - 7:00 PM


Registration for this event has closed. 

Orange Arrow Pointing Right  Tri-State Webinar Series

Upcoming Webinars

The Colorado Department of Education is partnering with the Kansas TASN Autism and Tertiary Behavior Supports Group and the Nebraska Autism Spectrum Disorders Network to bring a comprehensive series of webinar trainings to their educators, families, and related service professionals.

The 2021-2022 Webinar Series Scheduled to be determined.

All webinars are offered on the day scheduled:

2:30pm – 3:15pm MT

Past Webinars

A full list of the archived Tri-State Webinars can be accessed from CDE's Professional Development Portal. 

Autism Library of
On-Demand Webinars

Other Training Opportunities

Registered Behavior Technician (RBT) Online Training Opportunity

This 40+ hour readiness training is a free, self-directed, online training which fulfills the Behavior Analyst Certification Board's (BACB) eligibility training requirements toward attaining a Registered Behavior TechnicianTM (RBTTM) credential. Please note this course is for staff or families working/living in Colorado,
January 7, 2021 - July 5, 2021
*Please note the application for registration for the January - July session is CLOSED.*
May 17, 2021 - November 11, 2021
*Please note the application for registration for the May - November session will open at 9:00 am on April 19, 2021.*


RBT Application

More information regarding the May 17, - November 11, 2021 RBT Online Training Opportunity (PDF)

Frequently Asked Questions regarding the RBT Course

Online Para-Educator Training

Due to the high demand of the RBT course, the Kansas Technical Assistance Network created a training geared toward para-educators who want further training on behavior and instructional strategies, but are NOT seeking the RBT credential. The content is based on information covered in the RBT course. If you simply want more information around behavior and instructional strategies, but do NOT want/need the RBT credential, please take this course.

About the Para-Educator Training:

  • You do NOT have to apply for this course, and can create account at the link below and begin taking modules at any time.
  • There is no timeline for completing the course. You can complete content whenever is convenient for you.
  • The course is completely free.
  • You will receive a certificate of completion for 7-8 contact hours.
  • This course does NOT meet BACB requirements for the 40 hour RBT training.

Online Para-Educator Training

Culturally and Linguistically Responsive ASD Educational Identification

This workshop will provide school professionals with advanced training pertaining to considerations regarding ASD assessment practices when working with traditionally underserved children, including children that are economically vulnerable, racially/ethnically diverse, linguistically diverse, and females.  See flyer for more information and to register.

More information coming soon! 

Join the Conversation & Contact Us

ASD Office Hours

Brooke Carson will be offering ASD office hours on following Fridays from 9:30 AM to 11:30 AM:

  • December 4th, 11th &18th
  • January 8th, 15th, 22nd & 29th
  • February 5th, 19th & 26th
  • March 5th, 12th, 19th & 26th
  • April 2th, 9th, 16th, 23rd & 30th
  • May 7th & 21st

Join the ASD
Zoom Meetings

Meeting ID: 932 1846 7451


View other available ESSU office hours


Please note, during the office hours we will not be able to give legal advice OR be able to discuss student-specific issues (e.g. IEP minutes, service delivery).

BCBA Conversations 2020-2021

If you are a BCBA working in a public or facility school across the state of Colorado, you are invited to a monthly gathering of other BCBAs to collaborate, problem solve and share resources. We will be picking up where we left off last year discussing delivering services in the time of COVID 19, so please come with questions, ideas and anecdotes about what has been helpful for you and your teams.

Hope to see you there!


  • Sep 3, 2020 04:00 PM
  • Oct 7, 2020 04:00 PM
  • Nov 4, 2020 04:00 PM
  • Dec 2, 2020 04:00 PM
  • Jan 6, 2021 04:00 PM

  • Feb 3, 2021 04:00 PM
  • Mar 3, 2021 04:00 PM
  • Apr 7, 2021 04:00 PM
  • May 5, 2021 04:00 PM
  • Jun 2, 2021 04:00 PM

Join BCBA Meeting

Join the Colorado Autism Spectrum Disorder Listserv

To join the Autism Spectrum Disorder listserv please contact Brooke Carson or Janet Zimmermann. ​

Contact an ASD Specialist

Brooke Carson, Ph.D.
Phone: 303-866-6691
Email Brooke Carson

Rhonda Danner, M.A.Ed - Email Rhonda Danner

Kelsey Young, Ph.D. - Email Kelsey Young

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