Intentional design considerations were incorporated to ensure this facility met the needs of both children and adults with autism
The Texas Tech University Burkhart Center for Autism Education and Research provides several new clinical facilities serving the College of Education’s student teachers, adults, and children living with autism, as well as their families and regional community members.
Designing for children and adults with autism requires intentional design considerations, so our team was engaged to conceptualize a facility that would meet this need as well as provide a comprehensive early childhood learning facility. A new full-inclusion preschool provides care for both autistic and neurotypical children, while an outpatient clinic supports children and adults with behavior and learning challenges. The facility is enhanced by outdoor play and learning space that includes a play area, beautiful landscape, and public art. We designed the first floor to also provide families with an expanded transition academy for adults, including a mock studio apartment to promote independent living skills.
In the end, the Adult Transition Academy, Teacher Preparation Academy, outreach program, research and support space, class labs, lecture rooms, and academic offices were all designed to meet the needs of individuals with autism of any age, while the comprehensive pre-school meets the needs of all regional families with preschoolers.
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