How can Ohio make the arts and arts education more accessible to
individuals with Autism Spectrum Disorder and other disabilities?


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Ohio Resources

National Resources


Click here for more information about the ACT dis/ability conference+festival

The Arts & Autism: Ohio Resource Guide Series was supported by the Ohio Arts Council and developed by experts across Ohio.
The guides provide a host of information, resources, and best practices tailored for Cultural Institutions, Teaching Artists, and Families. 

Click each image below to view a PDF of the guides.

*Resource Guides are online via, a free PDF viewing system. Be sure your web browser is up to date.

To acquire hard copies or for other accessibility issues, contact VSA Ohio at 614.241.5325.

Arts & Autism Ohio Resource Guide for Cultural Organizations  Arts & Autism Ohio Resource Guide for  Arts & Autism Ohio Resource Guide for Teaching Artists


Online Resource Directory - Nexus

The Nexus is now available for use by all through a partnership with the Ohio Center for Autism and Low Incidence.
This one-stop resource for cultural institutions to post accessible arts opportunities, and families to search for them launched in February 2015. 

   Start using Nexus today at

Postcard, Nexus: Connect with your community, Build your audience, Access the Arts Today!



2016 Arts and Autism Conference link



Ohio Resources

Appalachian Family Ceter for Autism and Disability Resources and Education

Autism Society of Central Ohio

Autism Society of Greater Cincinnati

Autism Society of Greater Cleveland

Autism Society of Greater Akron

Autism Society of Northwest Ohio

Autism Society of Mahoning Valley

Autism Speaks Ohio

Cincinnati Center for Autism

Dayton Autism Society

Great Lake Collaborative for Autism

Mid-Ohio Valley Autism Community

Milestones Autism Resources - Resource Center

The National Autism Network

Nationwide Children's Hospital, Autism Treatment Network

Nisonger Center at The Ohio State University

Northeast Ohio Autism Group

Ohio Center for Autism and Low Incidence

OCALI, Autism Internet Modules

Regional Autism Advisory Council of Southwest Ohio

The Rich Center for Autism at Youngstown State University


National Resources

Annotated Bibliography - Arts and Autism Literature Review (pdf)

The John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, resources for cultural administrators



This is an exciting, ground-breaking initiative – no similar coordinated, statewide efforts have yet been identified in the US.
In the fall of 2012, the Ohio Arts Council engaged VSA Ohio to help address a growing need and responded to a constituent request for information about arts activities in Ohio geard toward young people with autism. Partnership and research efforts ensued, including constituent surveys, focus groups, a literature review, formation of an Advisory Group, and resource development. Research yielded rich information, themes and ideas which continue moving this Initiative forward. This project is continuously met with enthusiasm and has received recognition from the National Endowment for the Arts, The Kennedy Center, VSA International, and National Assembly of State Arts Agencies.


Numerous themes emerged from the research, representing barriers to accessing the arts, as well as solutions. Information about accessible arts opportunities is essential, but generally absent or out of reach for those who need it. Specializationis required to meet the needs of individuals on the spectrum. Preparation is essential for everyone involved. The process of art-making, as well as repetition and practice is most likely to yield positive outcomes. Sustained and substantial investments make a difference on impact. Collaboration is key to success, and efforts should be coordinated. Advocacy by grassroots and grasstops will increase awareness and knowledge.

Arts & Autism in Ohio Initiative, Phase 1 Report

Arts & Autism in Ohio Initiative, Phase 2 Report

The Arts & Autism in Ohio Initiative is supported by

Ohio Arts Council Logo, Ohio Arts Council, five "A"s on a circle forming a multi-color wheel   

National Endowment for the Arts logo, primary color triangles stacked on Art Works.   The Columbus Foundation logo, acorn graphic atop The Columbus Foundation