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About Learning Paths

Learning Paths are small collections of curated activities that focus on an early intervention topic. To learn about the topic, you will complete each activity on the path. Activities might include reading an article, taking an online module, watching a video, etc. Once you complete the learning path, you will take a final quiz to earn a certificate documenting the professional development hours earned.

Available Learning Paths

Autism Pathways


Path #1: What is Autism Spectrum Disorder?

Map IconThis learning path provides an overview of autism spectrum disorder, including information about the diagnosis, primary and secondary characteristics, early identification, and other introductory information relevant to those who provide early intervention. GET STARTED



Path #2: Early Signs and Symptoms of Autism Spectrum Disorder

Map IconThis learning path focuses on illustrating and describing the early signs and symptoms of autism spectrum disorder (ASD) in very young children. With this knowledge, early intervention practitioners can improve early identification and provide appropriate early intervention for children who have or are suspected of having ASD. GET STARTED



Additional Resources

The ITC of VA does not endorse any particular intervention for children with an autism spectrum disorder. As with all children, intervention must be individualized and evidence-based. In addition, practitioners are expected to use caregiver coaching and natural learning environment practices with all children and families. If you would like to learn about strategies for supporting very young children who have or who are suspected of having ASD and their families, consider the following additional resources.


Guidance Documents


Online Courses/Modules

Functional Assessment Pathways


Path #1: Introduction to Functional Assessment

Map IconThis learning path provides an overview of functional assessment. Topics include a definition, key components, and other introductory information related to the importance of using functional assessment throughout the early intervention process. GET STARTED


Path #2: A Continuous and Collaborative Process

Map IconThis learning path illustrates how functional assessment (FA) is both a continuous and a collaborative process. Functional assessment is continous when service providers us it to gather information about the child and family throughout early intervention. When FA reflects a collaborative team process, it includes building and maintaining rapport and relationships among early intervention team members (i.e., the service coordinator, service providers and family members/caregivers). GET STARTED


Path #3: Functional Assessment During Naturally Occurring Learning Opportunities in Multiple Situations and Settings

Map IconThis learning path focuses on two specific components of functional assessment: multiple situations and settings, and naturally occurring. The component “multiple situations and settings” includes a child’s functional skills in different places, activities, and people. The component “naturally occurring” refers to the activities and routines the child participates in that are unique to the family’s culture, community, and values. GET STARTED


Path #4: Observing, Listening and Asking Meaningful Questions

Map IconThis learning path focuses on three specific components of functional assessment: observing, listening, and asking meaningful questions. Observing involves watching children and families in-person or on video, in the home and in other natural environments. Listening means connecting with the family to gain a comprehensive understanding of their priorities and concerns based on their resources, values, and culture. Asking meaningful questions helps promote a conversation with a family using open-ended questions to convey respect that enhances family-centered services. GET STARTED


Path #5: Analyzing Multiple Sources of Information

Map IconThis learning path focuses on analyzing the information from all sources (parent report, observation, age-anchored assessment tool, clinical opinion, etc.) in order to understand the child’s functioning compared to same age peers. GET STARTED

Transition from Early Intervention Pathways


Path #1: Transition from Early Intervention

Map IconThis learning path is designed to inform EI service coordinators and service providers about practices and requirements for ensuring a smooth transition for children and families when they leave early intervention. GET STARTED



Social Emotional Development Pathways


Path #1: Introduction to Social Emotional Development

Map IconThis learning path provides an introduction of social emotional development. Topics include evidence-based research, a framework for infant mental health, and the importance of family, environment, experiences, and culture. GET STARTED





Path #2: Temperament

Map IconZero to Three (2022), a global non-profit organization specializing in resources, research, and supports related to infants and toddlers (birth to age three) defines temperament as, “...a child’s personal ‘style’ – the way he or she experiences the world.” This learning path explores different types of temperaments and defining characteristics. Topics include an overview of temperament and strategies to assist early interventionists in their work. GET STARTED




Path #3: Understanding Behavior

Map IconThis learning path provides a context for how social emotional development can influence behavior. Topics include understanding child behaviors, how challenging behaviors may manifest themselves in daily routines, and how to implement behavior management tools that are effective and supportive of the child. GET STARTED




Path #4: Attachment

Map IconAttachment describes a part of the relationship between a caregiver and child where the caregiver serves as the secure base for the child to feel loved, safe, and secure. This learning path provides an overview of attachment theory and strategies to nurture the caregiver-child relationship. Topics include attachment theory, attachment styles, the impact of attachment, and responsive care. GET STARTED




Path #5: Attunement and Responsive Interactions

Map IconThis learning path provides a context for how attunement and responsive interactions influence brain development and infant mental health. Topics include serve and return interactions, misattunement, and building a child’s brain through responsive relationships. GET STARTED




Path #6: Trauma

Map IconTrauma can lead to negative consequences for a child’s future social and academic success later on in life. This learning path provides an overview of trauma and the potential impact on young children and their families. Topics include trauma and early childhood development, historical trauma, and understanding and building the capacity of caregivers to support their child. GET STARTED




Path #7: Stress and Trusting Relationships

Map IconStress can negatively impact the child as well as the parent-child relationship. This learning path provides information on stress and the potential impact on families. Topics include toxic stress, trusting relationships, and strategies to support families. GET STARTED



Sensory Disabilities Pathways


Path #1: The Impact of Deafblindness on Learning and Development

Map IconThis learning path provides foundational knowledge of deafblindness. Topics include an overview of deafblindness, the impact deafblindness has on learning, and the importance of early identification of deafblindness. GET STARTED




Path #2: Early Intervention for Children Who Are Deafblind

Map IconThis learning path, designed specifically for early interventionists, focuses on how deafblindness affects learning and development. Topics include strategies to support children and families with communication and concept development skills. Transition to preschool support is also discussed. GET STARTED



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This website is the intellectual property of the Department of Behavioral Health and Developmental Services through the Integrated Training Collaborative contract and the Virginia Early Intervention Professional Development Center (VEIPD). All information and materials on this site are for educational and informational purposes and are not intended as a substitute for professional advice. In order to use, reuse, republish or reprint this content, existing logos must be maintained and the content must be appropriately cited. For citation or reference guidance, email infoveipd@vcu.edu.


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