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Nicole Smith


  • Ph.D. in Education, Claremont Graduate University
  • M. Ed in Special Education, California State Polytechnic University 
  • B.A. in Social Ecology, University of California, Irvine
  • A.A. in Liberal Arts, Mt. San Antonio College

Research Interest

  • Campus collaboration on inclusive models for students with various backgrounds.  
  • Universal design for learning as a vehicle for social justice and person-centered learning in the classroom.  
  • Using innovative instructional strategies, effective pedagogy, and collaborative models for positive student engagement outcomes. 
  • Social integration and engagement of students with disabilities, diverse ethnicities, and gender differences in higher education. 


  • Gustin, L., Funk, H. E., Reiboldt, W., Parker, E., Smith, N., Blaine, R. (2020). Gaining Independence: Cooking Classes Tailored for Students with Autism. Journal for Postsecondary Education and Disability.  
  • Smith, N. V. & Pelonis, E. M.  (2014). Accommodating students with autism in higher education through peer mediated intervention. Communiqué. 12-15. 
  • Smith, N. V. (2014). LIFE Project Training Manual. Long Beach, CA. CSULB. 

Accomplishments and Awards


  • Education Specialist Credential
  • Education Specialist II Credential
  • Multiple Subjects Credential


  • TPA Certified Assessor Tasks 1, 2, 3, & 4 
  • Therapeutic Crisis Intervention