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Faculty and Staff

Elizabeth Harkins

Professor • Special Education, Professional Counseling and Disability Studies

Elizabeth A. Harkins (Monaco) (she/her/disabled), Ed.D., is a former special education administrator, classroom teacher, and family advocate. She has worked with autistic students and students with developmental disabilities in a variety of settings. Trained in Intergroup Relations, she is now an assistant professor of Disability Studies and Special Education in the Department of Special Education, Professional Counseling, and Disability Studies at William Paterson University. Dr. Harkins also serves as the program director of the Autism and Developmental Disabilities Advanced Master’s program.

Dr. Harkins' current scholarship is focused on social justice in special education, specifically intersectional pedagogy, and sociocultural sustainability and disability studies in education. Rooted in Black feminist theory and culturally relevant pedagogy, Dr. Harkins' work examines the awareness and effects of multiple, intersecting sociocultural markers across special education communities, policies, and pedagogy.

Dr. Harkins is on the Fulbright Specialist Roster and has served multiple roles on the Board of Directors for the Council for Exceptional Children’s (CEC) Division on Autism and Developmental Disabilities (DADD). Currently, she is the president for DADD. Dr. Harkins also serves on the Publications Committee for CEC. She earned her doctorate in Educational Leadership and Supervision from American International College. She holds two MEds in Special Education from Lesley University, and a BA in Comparative Literature from the University of Massachusetts at Amherst.

In her free time, she is fueled by live theater, music, her dogs, and plants.

Degrees

EdD , American International College ,

MEd , Lesley University ,

BA , University of Massachusetts, Amherst ,

Specialization

Intersectional pedagogy, Disability Studies, Special Education, Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities, Autism

Licenses and Certifications

10/31/2014
Supervisor/Director, State

04/30/2014
Severe Disabilities (3-22), State

05/31/2011
Moderate Disabilities (grades 5-12), State

Representative Publications


Culturally Inclusive Pedagogies and Practices; High Leverage Practices; Council for Exceptional Children; 2024


Neurodiversity-Affirming Interventions in the Science of Reading;


Restraint and seclusion of students with disabilities: An intersectional perspective;
http://40 Landing Trl


Guidance for the Antiracist Educator Culturally Sustaining Pedagogies for Disability and Diversity; 2023


Leading with an Equity Lens: Addressing the Intersection of Racism and Ableism in Public Schools; 2022

Representative Presentations


Can Neurodiversity have a seat at the table? Diverse perspectives on autism research
Divison on Autism and Developmental Disabilities International Conference Divison on Autism and Developmental Disabilities
, 2023


Outside in or inside out: Intersectionality in disability policy.
Council for Exceptional Children (CEC) National Conference, Council for Exceptional Children
, 2024


Assessing Our Awareness: Tools for Developing Teachers' Cultural Competence.
Council for Exceptional Children Critical Conversations Webinar series
, 2021


Assessing Our Awareness: Tools for Developing Teachers' Cultural Competence.
Council for Exceptional Children Critical Conversations Webinar series
, 2021


Disability, intersectionality and belonging in special education: Socioculturally sustaining practices.
Council for Exceptional Children (CEC) National Conference Council for Exceptional Children
, 2024

Fellowships, Grants and Research

INTERSECT: Framing an Intersectionality Based Analysis for Disrupting Disparities in Autism Diagnosis
Grant

Assessing PreK-12 Teachers' Level of Awareness Regarding Students' Intersectional Identities
Assigned Release Time

By appointment

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