CEL facilitates multi-institutional research on engaged learning topics. Participants from institutions around the world collaborate over three years, producing scholarship that shapes research and practice globally.
CEL is home to two book series. In addition, CEL research seminars and other initiatives have produced 100+ publications (to date).
CEL’s concise guides offer research-informed practices for engaged learning.
CEL’s concise guides offer practical strategies for studying engaged learning.
CEL brings together international leaders in higher education to develop, synthesize, and share rigorous research on central questions about student learning.
The CEL Scholar role and CEL Student Scholars program enable Elon faculty and students to deepen their understanding of and professional development in scholarly activity on engaged learning.
Armstrong, Thomas. 2012. Neurodiversity in the Classroom: Strength-Based Strategies to Help Students with Special Needs Succeed in School and Life . Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development.
This book is a good entry point for readers new to neurodiversity and strength-based framing of disability. It applies to students of any age and is both practical and thought-provoking. If you have been working with disability and neurodiversity for a while, this book might not be for you.
Cook-Sather, Alison, and Morgan Cook-Sather. 2023. "From Reporting to Removing Barriers: Toward Transforming Accommodation Culture into Equity Culture." Education Sciences 13 (6): 611. https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci13060611.
This is a co-written piece by an educational developer and their legally blind daughter highlighting the barriers encountered in their educational experience. The piece includes a video to help exemplify the student’s experience of navigating the campus. This is both a powerful piece and an example that any institution could draw from and replicate with students on their campuses.
Cook-Sather, Alison. 2019. "A Tool for Changing Differences from Deficits into Resources: The Access Needs Form." The National Teaching & Learning Forum 28 (5): 7-9. https://doi.org/10.1002/ntlf.30209.
This is a short publication and tool to switch your classroom from deficit-based thinking to strength-based thinking around differences and disabilities. It invites students to identify differences and disabilities that can then turn into resources within the classroom community.
Dolmage, Jay Timothy. 2017. Academic Ableism: Disability and Higher Education. Ann Arbor, MI: University of Michigan Press.
This book gives a valuable perspective on assumptions in processes, programs, and infrastructure that promote an ableist environment and disadvantage those on our campuses with disabilities. It is a must-read for anyone working in and supporting higher education. Dolmage’s writing style is accessible and conversational. It gives any reader content that will make you frustrated, ready to jump to action, or reflective. No matter where you enter this conversation, there is much to learn and consider in making our spaces and process better.
Available in an open-access format at https://doi.org/10.3998/mpub.9708722
Dwyer, Patrick, Erica Mineo, Kristin Mifsud, Chris Lindholm, Ava Gurba, and T. C Waisman. 2023. "Building Neurodiversity-Inclusive Postsecondary Campuses: Recommendations for Leaders in Higher Education." Autism in Adulthood 5 (1): 1-14. https://doi.org/10.1089/aut.2021.0042.
This publication is by neurodivergent students of various academic stages that, with a parent advocate, provide recommendations for higher education campuses to be more supportive and inclusive of neurodiverse identities.
Forber-Pratt, Anjali J., Larry R. Price, Gabriel J. Merrin, Rachel A. Hanebutt, and Javari A. Fairclough. 2022. "Psychometric Properties of the Disability Identity Development Scale: Confirmatory Factor and Bifactor Analyses." Rehabilitation Psychology 67 (2): 120-27. https://doi.org/10.1037/rep0000445.
This article uses the Disability Identity Development Scale (DIDS), which is a useful tool to understand identity in disability populations. This can be used by campuses to understand self-advocacy, disability advocacy, wellness, and inclusion. Dr. Forber-Pratt is a scholar to search for, as her work and her current role as Director of the National Institute on Disability, Independent Living and Rehabilitation Research (NIDILRR) are leading this work in many realms.
Griful-Freixenet, Júlia, Katrien Struyven, Meggie Verstichele, and Caroline Andries. 2017. "Higher Education Students with Disabilities Speaking out: Perceived Barriers and Opportunities of the Universal Design for Learning Framework." Disability & Society 32 (10): 1627-49. https://doi.org/10.1080/09687599.2017.1365695.
This article highlights the benefit of universal design for learning (UDL) framework for students with barriers, as well as a critical analysis about why implementation of UDL on its own can create additional barriers for access and inclusion.
Kuder, S. Jay, Amy Accardo, and John Woodruff. 2021. College Success for Students on the Autism Spectrum: A Neurodiversity Perspective. Routledge.
This book is targeted to support autistic students success in college. There is much to learn in here that would apply more broadly to support neuroinclusive and neuroaffirming campuses, but the focus on the autistic student experience is prioritized.
Minotti, Bradley J., Katherine M. Ingram, Anjali J. Forber-Pratt, and Dorothy L. Espelage. 2021. "Disability Community and Mental Health among College Students with Physical Disabilities." Rehabilitation Psychology 66 (2): 192-201. https://doi.org/10.1037/rep0000377.
This article connects the living experience of disabled students to the sense of community and inclusion on a college campus. There are specific insights to how community-building initiatives support these students and their college experience.
Moriña, Anabel, and Gilda Biagiotti. 2022. "Inclusion at University, Transition to Employment and Employability of Graduates with Disabilities: A Systematic Review." International Journal of Educational Development 93 (September): 102647. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ijedudev.2022.102647.
This article is a systematic review of work that examines the employability and transition to employability for graduates with disabilities. This topic is important for both neurodivergent and disabled populations, and the article covers how universities can facilitate successful matching and transitions.
Prizant, Barry M., and Tom Fields Meyer. 2016. Uniquely Human: A Different Way of Seeing Autism . Simon & Schuster.
This is a book for everyone who interacts with people. It provides readers with a way to shift their mindset of viewing behavior as communication and reframing what behaviors might be communicating. The focus is on younger children, but the value can be applied to learners of all ages.
Shea, Lynne C., Linda Hecker, and Adam R. Lalor. 2019. From Disability to Diversity: College Success for Students with Learning Disabilities, ADHD, and Autism Spectrum Disorder. Sterling, VA: Stylus Publishing.
This resource promotes a philosophy of universal design for education. The authors are all faculty or staff at Landmark College, which exclusively serves neurodivergent students. This book gives a great introduction to the language of identities and diagnoses and how they might present in the college context. There are also important discussions around supportive and inclusive environments in and out of the classroom using a universal design approach. Consider this a go-to guiding document to get started on a more neuroinclusive college campus.
Shmulsky, Solvegi, Ken Gobbo, Andy Donahue, and Frank Klucken. 2021. "Do Neurodivergent College Students Forge a Disability Identity? A Snapshot and Implications." Journal of Postsecondary Education and Disability 34 (1): 53-63.
This paper investigates identity formation and self-acceptance of students at an institution that serves neurodiverse students. They look at the connections between strength of identity with wellness and social justice advocacy around neurodiversity and disability.
Shmulsky, Solvegi, Ken Gobbo, and Steven Vitt. 2022. "Culturally Relevant Pedagogy for Neurodiversity." Community College Journal of Research and Practice 46 (9): 681-85. https://doi.org/10.1080/10668926.2021.1972362.
This article highlights the need for intentional intersection of diversity, equity, and inclusion initiatives and pedagogical practices to be inclusive of neurodiversity and universal design of learning practices. There are very concrete recommendations that can be implemented into any course and curriculum.
Tobin, Thomas J, and Kirsten T. Behling. 2018. Reach Everyone, Teach Everyone: Universal Design for Learning in Higher Education. West Virgina University Press.
This book is a great resource about UDL for a wide range of leaders and roles on a college campus. It gives examples of where UDL is implemented and helps readers apply it in various ways to their classrooms and campuses.
Wong, Alice. 2020. Disability Visibility: First-Person Stories from the Twenty-First Century. Penguin Random House.
Also an adapted version for young adults – Disability Visibility: 17 First-Person Stories for Today – Alice Wong
These books provide short stories of lived experiences across a breadth of disabilities and contexts. I give this book as a reading in courses exploring diversity, equity, and inclusion. The perspective of these accounts is sometimes tough to read because of the ignorance and ableism that can be found everywhere. However, engaging in the hard-to-hear experiences should help anyone gain empathy and understanding, and implore readers to advocate for disability in their spaces and contexts.
Wood, Rebecca, Laura Crane, Francesca Hope, Alan Morrison, and Ruth Moyse. 2022. Learning from Autistic Teachers: How to Be a Neurodiversity-Inclusive School. Jessica Kingsley Publishers.
This book is a nice balance between understanding perspectives of autistic teachers and staff in our schools, and how their perspectives can make our teaching and institutions more neuroinclusive and neuroaffirming. Although it is framed primarily in pre-college/university settings, there is something for everyone in here.