Certificate in Understanding Autism (L3)

20 weeks
1 evening per week

Course Info

This qualification will help you increase your knowledge and understanding of autism. Successful completion of this qualification will support you to develop in-depth knowledge and understanding of autism, which would enable progression onto appropriate qualifications and into employment within the health and social care and education sectors. The course should help you to understand:

  • how to adopt a positive approach to supporting individuals with autism
  • the current legislative framework relating to individuals with autism and how different theories have developed over time
  • how to support and manage transitions for individuals with autism
  • the range of therapeutic interventions and support available for individuals with autism and co-occurring conditions
  • how to support communication and social interaction for individuals with autism
  • how to develop an understanding of how individuals with autism may be vulnerable and the support worker’s role and responsibilities relating to safeguarding according to legislative requirements.

The term ‘autism’ is used as an umbrella term within this qualification for all autistic spectrum conditions, and the course includes children, young people and adults, though the main focus will be on children and young people.

The units you will study are:

  • Unit 1 – Autism in context
  • Unit 2 – Positive behavioural support for individuals with autism
  • Unit 3 – Understand support and management of transitions for individuals with autism
  • Unit 4 – Therapeutic interventions and support available for individuals with autism and co-occuring conditions
  • Unit 5 – Communication and social interaction with individuals with autism
  • Unit 6 – Safeguarding and resilience in autism


The programme is taught through a series of classes, tutorials and interactive workshops.

One of the key strengths of our teaching at the University Centre is the amount of time we dedicate to supporting you as an individual student to help you get the best out of your programme. One-to-one tutorials with your tutor are important as they allow you to raise any particular issues you may be facing. Your tutor will be as supportive as possible in helping you work through these issues.

Course Leader: Joe Lockwood, BA (Hons), PGCE, MA, MSET, is an experienced practitioner in a range of sectors including Social Care, Early Years, and the Voluntary and Community Sector. Joe has over 20 years’ experience in working in Disabled Children’s Services, with particular focus on working with those with complex medical needs, and Autism. A Member of The Society for Education and Training (MSET), she has presented at the annual Education and Training Foundation national conference.

Entry Requirements & Interview Process

This qualification is designed for learners who wish to increase their knowledge and understanding of Autism. There are no specific recommended prior learning requirements for this qualification.

However, learners may find it helpful if they’ve already achieved a Level 2 qualification in, for example, learning support, social care or healthcare, early years, or supporting teaching and learning.

Learners should be aged 16 or above to undertake this qualification. Applicants will be invited to an informal interview with the programme leader to discuss the course further.

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