The UConn Center for Excellence in Developmental Disabilities (Center) is a disability research and training program located on the campus of the University of Connecticut Health Center in Farmington, Connecticut. The Center is one of a national network of University Centers for Excellence in Developmental Disabilities Education, Research and Service (UCEDD) authorized by the federal Developmental Disabilities Assistance and Bill of Rights Act and funded through the Administration on Developmental Disabilities.
UConn Center Activities
The UCEDD participates in the Faith and Spirituality Advisory Council which has a membership of 17 consisting of a broad range of providers, representatives from an array of faith communities and consumers and parents. Activities include the development of a one page handout on disability etiquette for faith communities and panel presentations. Representatives of the group taped Sunday morning radio segments entitled ‘Healthy, Wealthy and Wise.’ These seven minute segments aired Sunday mornings at 5:30 a.m. on WRCH FM and contained segments on disability access and faith communities. The broadcast reached over 60,000 listeners.
The group held a conference on May 16, 2012, “Including People with Disabilities in Faith Communities: Strategies that will work in your community.” Dr. Erik Carter was the keynote speaker. Dr. Erik Carter is an Associate Professor of Special Education at Vanderbilt University. His talk brought practical ideas to life with the use of anecdotes, quotes, and examples of successful strategies. He assisted the audience of over 52 people representing various faith communities, some of whom participated in teams, in articulating and pursuing a bold vision of inclusion throughout their congregation, community, city or state. The full day conference included a panel discussion and workgroups for participants to discuss and plan their next steps to include individuals with disabilities in their communities. Service providers, people with disabilities, family members, faith community leaders, and lay people shared and heard strategies about how to welcome people with disabilities in their congregations, so that all may fully participate.
Each year we take on multiple projects funded through grants from the Federal government, the State of Connecticut, national organizations, local organizations, and/or other independently funded groups. We take on diverse projects related to public awareness, training, professional resources, and studies. Some of our projects last for a short period of time, while others may span years. Some of our projects are on-going, funded through grants that we renew every few years.
See all current projects listed below by category:
- Connecticut Collaborative to Improve Autism Services
- Afforable and Accessible Housing in Connecticut
- Connecticut Partners in Policymaking – A Self-Advocacy Training Program
- Doctoral Program in Early Childhood Intervention
- Early Childhood Personnel Center
- Emergency Preparedness
- Faith Based Initiative
- Parent to Parent Model of Service Coordination for Families of Preschool Age Children with Autism Spectrum Disorder
- Survey of Primary Care Physicians: Serving Adults with Autism Spectrum Disorders
Education and Training
Several of the UConn Center’s grants specifically support education and training for students, community members, and professionals in fields ranging from business to health care. Our specialized staff offer training opportunities each year on critical issues related to developmental disabilities. Creating future leaders and scholars to carry out the important mission of improving the lives of people with developmental disabilities and their families is at the heart of our educational programs.
Topics vary and programs and projects provide technical assistance to persons with disabilities, families, professionals and paraprofessionals, policymakers and students. Continuing education credits are offered to attendees.
We are currently offering the following education and training opportunities. For additional information, click on the education or training program you are interested in.
- Professional Development Opportunities for Special Education Paraeducators
- Doctoral program in Early Childhood Intervention
- Public Health Certificate in Interdisciplinary Disability Studies
- Partnership for Inclusive Practices
- Parent Leadership and Advocacy Training Program
- Early Intervention Specialist Program
- Early Childhood Professional Development
- Learn the Signs for Autism Spectrum Disorder
- CT DPH Medical Home for Children and Youth with Special Health Care Needs
- Check out our Training and Conference Presentations
The center offers a wide variety of publications, scholarly products and materials, technical assistance, and other dissemination activities (in partnership with other agencies and organizations, local, statewide and national) for students, professionals and individuals with disabilities and their families. You may find these under our Current and Active Projects as well as Completed Projects pages.
The center’s library contains over 2,000 books and multimedia materials that deal with specific developmental disabilities such as Asperger’s syndrome, autism, and Down Syndrome, plus the education, employment, health, and rights of people with disabilities. This page contains general web resources and web resources for parents. Please scroll down through the list below to view your options.
- Autism Services & Resources Connecticut
- Brain Injury Alliance of Connecticut
- Center on Postsecondary Education and Disability
- Citizens for Quality Sickle Cell Care
- Connecticut Down Syndrome Congress
- Connecticut Family Support Council and Connecticut Family Support Network
- Connecticut Families for Effective Autism Treatment (CT FEAT)
- Connecticut Voices for Children
- Connecticut Parent Advocacy Center, Inc.
- FAVOR, Family Advocacy for Children’s Mental Health
- Fragile X Society of Connecticut
- National Alliance of Mental Health of Connecticut
- Office of the Healthcare Advocate
- PATH Parent to Parent and Family Voices of Connecticut
- Spina Bifida Association of Connecticut
- Success SEPTO