Initiating a referral for autism diagnostic assessment

Students who undertake this micro-credential will improve their understanding of the importance of a prompt referral for autism assessments, and of the key professional groups who can initiate such referrals. Students will also be able to consider and select relevant screening tools, and to identify key pieces of clinical information and observations to be included in referrals for autism assessment.

Upon successful completion, you'll receive:

  • One PD Point - 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 complete the course and attempt the test and quiz by the end of the teaching period in which they have enrolled
    25 hours
    Academic Lead
    Associate Professor Iliana Magiati
    $330 inc. GST
    Critical information summary
    PSYCM515 Initiating a referral for autism diagnostic assessment [PDF 246KB]
    Student working on a laptop 

    What you'll learn

    Identify the key professional groups who can initiate a referral for autism assessments as described in the National Guideline for the Assessment and Diagnosis of Autism Spectrum Disorders in Australia (the Guideline)

    Demonstrate understanding of the importance of a prompt referral to ensure timely diagnosis and access to relevant supports and services

    Identify the relevant clinical information and observations to be included in a referral for an autism assessment, as outlined in the Guideline

    Identify and select screening tools that can be used at different ages and developmental stages to identify features of autism prior to formal diagnostic assessment

    Notebook and a workspace 

    Why study this course?

    This short course will provide future students who are interested in autism assessment and diagnosis with the opportunity to gain a University (micro) credential to recognise their learning. This course provides a unique opportunity for a range of professionals to enhance their knowledge and confidence in screening for autistic features and in initiating a referral for an autism diagnostic assessment.

    Recommended prior knowledge

    It is recommended that students have English competence (ideally Year 12 English level), and have some direct experience supporting neurodivergent people.

    Who should study this course?

    This unit will be of interest to a range of professionals who come into contact with children, young people or adults who may be autistic and for whom a referral for a formal diagnostic assessment of autism 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 regularly conduct autism assessments in the course of their practice.  Individuals who support children, adolescents and adults across settings (e.g., child health nurses, school counsellors, mental health practitioners, youth workers) may also be interested in this mico-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 applied skills required to participate in team-based diagnosis for autism. 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