About the Autism Centre for Education and Research (ACER)

The Autism Centre for Education and Research (ACER) focuses on developing evidence based practice and provision in autism across the lifespan, covering the range of ability levels and using methodologies based on knowledge co-construction with autistic people, practitioners and families.

Our world leading autism research involves collaboration with service users, with practitioners and carers and through partnership with key policy makers. We work interactively with institutions both inside and outside of higher education and we actively encourage prospective partners locally, nationally and internationally.

Public engagement 

ACER members undertake a range of public engagement activities. These include providing workshops and professional development to local authority staff and schools, and giving presentations at networking events and practitioner conferences. The AuVision project (led by Dr Andrea MacLeod in partnership with autistic students) has launched its online resource to educate HE staff in Inclusive Curriculum strategies to support autistic students and members of staff within the University of Birmingham. This has also attracted the interest of other Universities. 


In 2011, ACER’s was funded to develop the Autism Education Trust CPD programmes for education staff. These programmes were developed by a partnership of autistic people, practitioners, education providers and universities, and were underpinned by research undertaken by ACER staff. 220,000 education staff have undertaken this professional development programme to date. Through this work, ACER has contributed to improving educational practices and methods in Early Years settings and schools; enhanced the delivery of professional services and impacted on understanding, learning and participation in autism education in a number of countries.

Contact us

To get in touch with ACER, please email Professor Karen Guldberg.

Email: k.k.guldberg@bham.ac.uk