Human Development and Child Studies
Pawley Hall
456 Pioneer Drive
Rochester, MI 48309-4482
(248) 370-3077
Fax: (248) 370-4242
Contact Us: 

Dr. Janet Graetz
Department of Human Development and Child Studies
(248) 370-2620

ICA vs. a teaching endorsement in Autism/ASD

The ICA and a teaching endorsement are not the same. A teaching endorsement is awarded only to certified teachers. It requires the completion of an approved university course of study, and prepares candidates to teach.

Interdisciplinary Certificate in Autism

Application Deadlines:  April 1 and October 1, download the ICA Application packet (be sure to use the packet for the appropriate submission date as content may change).

The I
nterdisciplinary Certificate in Autism ( ICA) is special recognition of advanced interdisciplinary knowledge and experience (cannot be based entirely on college coursework) in the area of Autism/ASD and is an acknowledgement of competencies that the certificate holder possesses.  The ICA is awarded by Oakland University and the Michigan Department of Education (MDE) to professionals who have voluntarily advanced their expertise in the area of autism through education and professional experiences. 
Obtaining the ICA offers numerous benefits including increased consumer confidence, program prestige and professional standing. Possession of the certificate can signal that the professional is well-qualified and can offer competent, high-quality services to individuals with Autism and their families. Colleagues can tap into resources of ICA certificate holders for their recognized expertise in Autism. Additionally, certificate holders will possess a visible credential representing their efforts to advance their knowledge, skills and professional competence in the field.
Many general and special education teachers have a particular interest in Autism and undertake continuing education to advance their knowledge and skills in this area. Professionals from a variety of disciplines, as well as educators, who meet the criteria for application will be eligible for the certificate.

Examples from a variety of disciplines may potentially be eligible for the ICA:
  • Art Therapy 
  • Audiology 
  • Behavior Management 
  • Education 
  • Mental Health 
  • Music Therapy 
  • Occupational Therapy 
  • Physical Therapy 
  • Psychology 
  • Social Work 
  • Speech-Language Pathology
Application criteria:
  • A minimum of five years of experience in their professional discipline.
  • At least three years of experience working with students/clients having autism.
  • Provision of services to multiple students/ clients having autism.
  • Completion of at least 100 clock hours of learning activities in autism.*
  • Engagement in leadership activity in the area of autism.**
  • Successful functioning as a member of an Interdisciplinary Team on behalf of students/ clients having autism.
*Learning activities can include university courses, professional workshops/conferences/seminars, independent study, and consultation with specialists. The learning activities must be continuous and current within the last 10 years.
Leadership activities can include delivering professional presentations, teaching university courses, conducting research, producing publications, and supervising others working with individuals having autism. 

Applicants for the ICA must verify the professional experience, education, and leadership that satisfy the competencies represented by the certificate.