Emily Iland, M.A. is an award-winning author, advocate, researcher, and leader in the autism field. She is the mother of a young man with ASD and brings personal experience and insight to her professional roles.

Emily is an Adjunct Professor in the Department of Special Education at California State University, Northridge. She is an educational consultant, presenting a variety of topics at conferences in both English and Spanish, all over the U.S. and abroad. She is known for the clear way she presents complex information!

Areas of special focus include Reading Comprehension & ASD, Autism 101, Sibling Issues & Family Balance, Social & Friendship Skills, Play & Social Inclusion, Skills for Safety & Independence, Autism & Law Enforcement,  Transition to Adulthood, Autism & the College Experience, Autism in the Workplace, and Adult Relationships.


Emily received a Master’s Degree in Special Education with distinction at California State University, Northridge in 2007. She was the Nathan O. Freedman Outstanding Graduate Student of the Year, an honor reserved for a single master’s candidate. Her thesis on the obstacles faced by Latina mothers of children with autism is the largest study to date of this population, with significant findings. Emily’s area of specialization is Educational Therapy.


Emily’s newest book is Drawing A Blank: Improving Comprehension for Readers on the Autism Spectrum, which focuses on building understanding for those who can decode but do not understand. DaB examines evidence-based practices and offers practical ideas to improve comprehension.

Autism Spectrum Disorders from A to Z by Barbara T. Doyle and Emily D. Iland is a practical, comprehensive guide that offers in-depth information to help readers:
* Understand Autism
* Secure a diagnosis
* Deal with the impact within the family
* Understand and obtain in-depth, meaningful assessments,
* Obtain supports and services,
* Work effectively as teams,
* Transition from one phase of life to another, and
* Understand the causes of ASD.

Emily translated and published the award-winning Spanish version, Los Trastornos del Espectro de Autismo de la A a la Z, the most comprehensive book on autism available in Spanish.


 Los Trastornos del Espectro de Autismo de la A a la Z won the 2006 Outstanding Literary Work of the Year award from the Autism Society of America. That same year, it was awarded the International Latino Book Award for Health. In April, 2007 both books were honored with the Exceptional Parent Magazine Symbol of Excellence Award. In 2008 Emily was spotlighted as a “Know the Signs” Campaign Champion by the Centers for Disease Control.


Emily is the President of the Autism Society of America, Los Angeles, and a founder of SCAAN,, the Santa Clarita Autism Asperger Network.  She collaborates regularly with Fiesta Educativa, conducting parent education workshops and raising autism awareness in the Latino community. Emily is a collaborator with Dr. Sandy Magaña on a new training project to help Latino immigrant parents of children with autism.


Emily is involved at the state and local level in initiatives and policy related to Autism. She is currently a member of the Senate Select state-wide work group on the Employment of Individuals with Autism Spectrum Disorders, and is helping create a practical guide for employers. Emily was actively involved with the California Blue Ribbon Commission on Autism and provided data from her thesis on Latino families of children with autism to the Commissioners. She was also the co-chairman of the Transition Work Group for North Los Angeles County.


Emily was selected as a subject matter expert (SME) to help create the Peace Officers Standards and Training (POST) Autism Awareness DVD that was provided at no charge to all law enforcement agencies in the state of California in 2010. She is a founding member of C.L.E.A.R, Community and Law Enforcement Aware Response. CLEAR is a collaborative to reduce criminal involvement of people with disabilities and help law enforcement officials be informed in their response to people with special needs. Emily is currently coordinating autism awareness training for up to 9,000 L.A.P.D. officers. The L.A.P.D Police Commission has honored Emily twice for her contribution to this effort.

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