Autism Clinic

two therapists working with child on iPad

WIU's Autism Center of Excellence (ACE)

Autism Center Services

Psychoeducational Evaluations

WIU's Autism Clinic provides FREE autism evaluations for children between 0-5 years. Evaluations for children older than age 5 will be considered on a case-by-case basis. If your child is school-aged we recommend you see our resources for other steps to take. 

Evaluations are conducted by a team consisting of at least one speech-language pathologist and one school psychologist with graduate students in training. The estimated time for an evaluation is 2-3 hours but varies by age and cooperation.

Parent(s)/Guardian(s) are required to be present.

Evaluations consist of:

  • Cognitive assessment
  • Speech and language evaluation
  • Hearing screening
  • Autism specific evaluation
  • Review of adaptive and behavioral functioning

This clinic does not conduct full psychological evaluations or evaluate for other potential clinical diagnoses. If you are interested in a full psychological evaluation for your child, please contact the Psychology Clinic at (309) 298-1919. Please do not call the Psychology Clinic for the autism evaluations. Our preferred method of contact is by email: 


Memorial Hall (2nd floor) - Macomb Campus


Appointments are held on Fridays between 9:00 a.m. and 2:30 p.m during the academic year.

Schedule an Evaluation

If you are interested in scheduling an evaluation, please complete and submit the following intake form (Jotform). Once we receive this form, we will respond within within 5 business days to complete an initial screening to determine next steps in the evaluation process. We will be closed for the University break over summer (May 10 - August 16th), we will continue to accept referrals but our response time may be delayed during this period.

Contact & Staff


Please contact the Autism Clinic by email at or if you have not heard a response within two weeks please contact us through the Speech Clinic at (309) 298-1955. We do anticipate longer than normal response times during the summer break, please be patient with us as we have limited staff available during this time. 


Leigh Ann Fisler, PhD, BCBA, NCSP
Associate Professor, School Psychologist and Behavior Analyst

Dr. Fisler completed her B.A. in Psychology from Syracuse University and a PhD in School Psychology from University of California, Riverside. has worked with children and young adults with autism for 16 years. During this time, she has provided early intervention services, behavioral support, family consultation, conducted psychoeducational evaluations, and provided group social and life skills training. Dr. Fisler completed her post-doctoral training with experience at UCLA with the PEERS® program and continues to provide college and career support for autistic young adults.

Nicole Pierson, MS, CCC-SLP/L
Speech-Language Pathologist, Instructor, Internship Coordinator

Professor Pierson earned bother her Bachelor's and Master's degrees from Western Illinois University. She is currently pursuing her doctorate in Educational Leadership (Ed.D.) in Organizational Justice, Equity and Inclusion. Nicole has experience working with preschool- 4th grade students with a variety of speech and language impairment and is committed to pro-neurodiverse approaches to intervention. This means that neurodiversity is valued and each child honored as a person.

Emilee Doyle, M.S., CCC/SLP

Speech Language Pathologist, Instructor

Professor Doyle earned both her Bachelor's and Master's degrees from Western Illinois University. She has worked in the medical field for 13 years across the early intervention setting in the home setting, preschool, as well as inpatient and outpatient clinics. She is certified in Picture Exchange Communication System (PECS) and Lee Silverman Voice Treatment (LSVT LOUD).

Graduate Assistants
  • Keri Devolder, Speech Pathology graduate assistant
  • Elida Zarate, Psychology graduate assistant

Steps for Parents to Take

NOTE: The information below is intended for general informational purposes only, and is not an endorsement of the organizations or services listed. The information provided is not intended to nor does it constitute legal or medical advice. Please consult a lawyer or doctor if you require legal or medical advice. Reasonable efforts have been exercised to provide current information for the resources given.

If you think your child might have autism or a development delay, refer to the following.

Under Age 3

Early Intervention (EI) services provide a developmental evaluation to determine if your child is eligible for supports and services.

Regional Office of Education (ROE) 26

ROE 26 Early Beginnings provide developmental services for Fulton, Hancock, McDonough, and Schuyler counties.

Main Office Phone: (309) 575-3226
View additional contact information.

Parent & Child Together (PACT) for West Central Illinois

PACT provides home and center based developmental services for ages 0-5.

Macomb Office Phone: (309) 298-3143

Ages 3 and over
  1. Request a School District Assessment by submitting a written request for an assessment to your principal or special education director.
  2. The school has 15 working days to respond to the request and may confirm or deny the request. This process will often be conducted during what is called a Domain Meeting. If they confirm the request, they will create an assessment plan and send it to you to sign.
  3. When you return the signed assessment plan, the district has 60 working days to complete the assessment and set up a date to meet with you about the results in a formal Individual Education Plan (IEP) meeting.
  4. If you child qualifies for services: an Individual Education Plan will be created.
    • If your child does NOT qualify for services: You should speak to your district about options and accommodations or you can request an evaluation outside of the school district.

Speech-Language Hearing Clinic

  • Speech and Language therapy (individual and group)
  • Parent support groups- Learn more about the Comfort Circle
  • Audiological services

Learn more about the Speech-Language Hearing Clinic.

Psychology Clinic

  • Comprehensive psychological testing for adults ages 18 or older
  • Individual psychotherapy for children and adults
  • Couples and family therapy
  • Group based support
  • Consultation

Learn more about the Psychology Clinic.


The Autism Program of Illinois- serves autistic individuals and supports families through a network of providers.

Autism Navigator- To help with the early signs of autism, family resources, and professional courses.

Autism Speaks 100 Day Kit for Young Children- helps families of children make the best possible use of the first 100 days following a diagnosis.

American Speech-Language Hearing Association (ASHA)- and the Importance of understanding the challenges with communication and social skills for autistic children.

Child Mind Institute- What is Applied Behavior Analysis with clinical experts Dr. Susan Epstein and Dr. Catherine Lord

Wrights Law- Navigating the IEP Process