Asperger’s/Autism Employment Coach Certification Fall 2020

In-depth training live over the Internet

Groups Begin Sept. 25 and Oct. 1, 2020

Barbara Bissonnette, Principal, Forward Motion Coaching

Each group is limited to 10, and an application is required.

This comprehensive, 11-week program is designed for career counselors and coaches, disability service professionals at colleges and universities, vocational rehabilitation and transition specialists and other professionals. It features live instruction and personalized mentoring. You will learn how to coach adults with Asperger’s Syndrome and similar autism spectrum profiles to choose the right job or career, find employment, and stay hired. Emphasis is on adapting traditional coaching techniques to fit the unique needs of these individuals.

The Asperger’s/Autism Employment Coach Certification features weekly, live virtual sessions plus a 6-week supervised practicum. Sessions feature interactive exercises, case studies, and group discussions. Weekly assignments consist of readings, short-answer questions/case study reviews and practice designing action plans for clients. This program is approved for 23 Global Career Development Facilitator (GCDF) credits.

A certificate of completion will be awarded to participants who successfully finish the program components. This certifies1 that the participant:

♦ Understands the impact of challenges related to interpersonal skills, executive function, restricted/repetitive interests and sensory processing/integration, as well as strengths that can be utilized in the workplace

♦ Is able to modify the traditional coaching model to meet the needs of individuals on the autism spectrum

♦ Can utilize strategies and techniques to assist individuals in finding the right job/career; finding a job; and staying employed


Weeks One & Two, Understanding Adults with Asperger’s/Autism:

Definition of autism spectrum disorder and the “Asperger profile;” impact on adults in the workplace (communication, executive function, etc.); strengths associated with this processing style.

Week Three, Adapting the Coaching Model: Modifying core coaching skills to meet the needs of these students/clients; evaluating readiness; obtaining accurate background information.

Week Four, Working with Individuals: How to address ten common challenges, plus strategies for executive function difficulties.

Week Five, Choosing the Right Job/Career and Getting Hired: Guiding individuals to find the right occupation; assessments; creating a realistic job search plan; interview preparation, including navigating the landmine of behavioral questions (continues to next session).

Week Six, Americans with Disabilities Act: How individuals are protected in the workplace; deciding whether, when and how to disclose; case examples.

Practicum begins week five or six (or later due to COVID-19)

Week Seven, Staying Employed: Tools and techniques for addressing common employment challenges; teaching individuals to self-advocate; intervening with an employer (continues to next session).

Week Eight, Educating Employers: Explaining Asperger’s/autism to employers; tips for modifying the interview process and on-boarding; innovative employer models and how to adapt them for internships and to small/mid-size organizations.

Weeks Nine and Ten, Practicum Continues (no weekly sessions): Participants coach an individual on the spectrum for 1 hour per week for six weeks. Written feedback is provided on weekly client notes, plus there are 3 calls with Barbara (30 min. each) to discuss progress, problems, strategies.

Week Eleven, Group Discussion: Participants present summaries of their coaching practicum to the group; wrap-up questions/comments; written practicum feedback provided by Barbara.

The program content is for professionals who are assisting students/clients with competitive, not sheltered or heavily supported, employment.

To request an application or if you have questions about the program, send an email to

1Certification is not an endorsement from Barbara Bissonnette or Forward Motion Coaching.

Dates and Registration

Group One: Live sessions from 10:00 — 11:30am Eastern U.S. time

Weekly sessions: 9/25, 10/2, 10/9, 10/16, 10/23, 10/30, 11/6, 11/13
Practicum continues (no weekly sessions): 11/20 or 11/27
Final group discussion, 1 session of 2 hours: 12/4

Group Two: Live sessions from 4:00 — 5:30pm Eastern U.S. time

Weekly sessions: 10/1, 10/8, 10/15, 10/22, 10/29, 11/5, 11/12, 11/19
Practicum continues (no weekly sessions): 11/26 or 12/3
Final group discussion, 1 session of 2 hours: 12/10

Program Features

♦ Comprehensive instruction on how to assist students/clients to find and maintain employment

♦ Detailed case studies illustrating a variety of Asperger’s/ autism profiles and employment situations

♦ Weekly written assignments with feedback from Barbara

♦ 6-week supervised practicum featuring written feedback plus 3 calls with Barbara

♦ Written feedback on practicum case study and group presentation

♦ Worksheets, resources, tools

♦ Group size limited to 10 to ensure full participation by all

Download flyer

To download a flyer, clickhere

Fee and Cancellation Policy

The cost of the Asperger’s/Autism Employment Coach Certification is $2,400.00 and includes written materials. Upon acceptance, a $250.00 deposit is required to hold a spot. Full payment is due prior to the first meeting. The deposit and/or fee can be charged to a VISA or MasterCard through the Forward Motion Coaching Web site, or paid via check.

Participants accepted into the program may cancel and receive a refund, less a $175 processing fee, up to September 11, 2020. After that date there are no refunds for any reason. Cancellations must be submitted in writing.

Forward Motion Coaching reserves the right to cancel the program due to low enrollment, in which case participants will receive a full refund of all monies paid.

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What Participants Say

“The content, readings, case studies and group discussions were insightful and extremely helpful in better equipping me to work with individuals with Asperger’s/autism. I have already had the opportunity to put a lot of what I’ve learned into practice with clients.” SO, University Career Counselor

“I found the course to be informative, relevant, practical and encouraging. It offered a balance of theory and application. Barbara provided a rich learning experience through the presentations, discussions, assignments and one-on-one coaching for participants. Actual client stories delivered a realistic perspective into the challenges of coaching [these individuals].” JY, Neurodiversity Consultant

“[This program provided] excellent and up-to-date knowledge … Almost immediately, [it] helped me be more patient and empathetic to the young man I have been coaching.” BS, Executive Director, Counseling Organization

“I particularly valued the coaching tool kit, resources and the personal coaching sessions provided by Barbara. I highly recommend this program to anyone who is seeking more knowledge or plans to work with individuals on the autism spectrum who are seeking employment or need guidance on how to be more successful.” KS, Transition Teacher

“Using case studies was helpful to see how to apply the concepts. The tools you shared were thorough yet easy to use.” LR, Job Developer, Non-Profit

“I came away with many tools and strategies to help the population of autistic students at my university. Barbara pulled heavily from her expertise in the field and provided real-life examples to bring concepts to life. I recommend this course to anyone wanting to improve their career services practice to better serve neurodiverse clients.” GS, University Career Counselor


♦ Qualifies for 23 GCDF credits