Autism: diagnostic features and assessment approaches in early childhood (0-5 years)

Students who undertake this micro-credential will gain the knowledge required to distinguish between neurotypical and neurodivergent development in early childhood (0-5 years) and to identify key diagnostic features of autism in young children. The course will also outline and explain the clinical information that can be obtained from a range of assessment methods and tools, and the importance of this information for diagnostic assessments for autism in young children.

Upon successful completion, you'll receive:

  • Two PD Points - stackable for unspecified academic credit in award courses
  • A Certificate of Achievement
  • A UWA Plus Professional Development Transcript, listing all successfully completed micro-credentials
Delivery mode
Online - Self-paced learning
Course dates
  • MC-2Q - commence from 1 April and complete by 30 June 2024
  • MC-3Q - commence from 1 July and complete by 30 Sept 2024
  • MC-4Q - commence from 1 Oct and complete by 31 Dec 2024

  • Duration
    Self-paced flexible learning, but learners need to attempt the test and quiz and complete the course by the end of the teaching period in which they have enrolled
    50 hours
    Academic Lead
    Associate Professor Iliana Magiati
    $660 inc. GST
    Critical information summary
    PSYCM512 Autism:  Diagnostic Features and Assessment Approaches in Early Childhood (0-5 years) [PDF 246KB]
    Student reading outside on campus 

    What you'll learn

    Identify indicators of, and distinguish between, neurotypical and neurodivergent development in children aged 0-5 years across a range of developmental domains

    Identify and describe key diagnostic features of autism in children aged 0-5 years

    Identify the assessment methods and tools that may be used in diagnostic assessments for autism in children aged 0-5 years

    Outline the clinical information that can be gathered from the different assessment approaches and apply your knowledge of early signs of autism and best practice autism diagnostic assessment in toddlers and young children to a case scenario.

    Notebook and a workspace 

    Why study this course?

    This short course will provide future students who are interested in autism assessment and diagnosis with a University (micro)credential to recognise their learning. This course provides a unique opportunity for a range of professionals to enhance their knowledge of key diagnostic features of autism in early childhood.

    Recommended prior knowledge

    It is recommended that students have English competence (ideally Year 12 English level), and have some direct experience working with young children, adolescents and/or adults in a professional setting (e.g., school, mental health service, youth service).

    Who should study this course?

    This micro-credential will be of interest to anyone interested in autism diagnosis, including professionals and other stakeholders who come into contact with young children suspected of being autistic, and for whom formal assessment might be warranted.

    This includes allied health professionals, such as practicing psychologists, speech pathologists, occupational therapists and social workers, as well as medical professionals (e.g., GPs, paediatricians and psychiatrists) who conduct autism assessments in the course of their practice. Individuals who support children in a range of early childhood settings (e.g., child health nurses, early childhood educators, childcare workers) may also be interested in this micro-credential.

    What's next after this course?

    You may be interested in enrolling and completing one or more of our other autism diagnosis micro-credentials, also available through UWA Plus.

    Learners who meet the admission requirements for the Graduate Certificate in Autism Diagnosis (GCAD) offered via The University of Western Australia may consider applying to the GCAD, which will equip students with the advanced knowledge and applied skills required to contribute to multidisciplinary diagnostic assessments for autism. Following the application and selection process, learners who are accepted and enrol in the GCAD will receive credit towards the first two units of the GCAD after successfully completing all seven of the autism diagnosis micro-credentials (PSYCM510, PSYCM511, PSYCM512, PSYCM513, PSYCM514, PSYCM515, and PSYCM516, which comprise GCAD units PSYC5520 and PSYC5521). 

    Please note that not all learners who enrol and complete the autism diagnosis micro-credentials are eligible to apply for the Graduate Certificate in Autism Diagnosis (GCAD).  This is because the GCAD is developed to provide graduates trained in psychology, speech pathology, occupational therapy, paediatrics, or psychiatry with the specialist knowledge and clinical skills required to participate in team-based diagnosis for autism and therefore acceptance into the GCAD is only available to learners who meet the course eligibility criteria following an application and selection process.

    Industry endorsement 

    This micro-credential is part of a suite of seven credit bearing micro-credentials (CBMCs) developed by Autism CRC, with The University of Western Australia. 



    Registrations are open.

    Register now