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Washington State University
College of Education

Josh Taylor

Josh Taylor

Assistant Professor
Special Education

WSU Pullman
Cleveland 338


Curriculum Vitae

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About Dr. Taylor

Josh Taylor is an Assistant Professor of Special Education in the Department of Teaching and Learning at Washington State University. Dr. Taylor draws from his background as a K-12 special educator to inform both his research and teaching, with a particular focus and passion around promoting positive outcomes for students with autism and other intellectual and developmental disabilities. He earned a PhD in special education from Virginia Commonwealth University with a focus on research-to-policy implementation, and a Master’s in Education from the University of Virginia. Although Dr. Taylor’s background is in K-12 settings, much of his research is focused on employment interventions and outcomes, particularly for transition-age youth. When he isn’t teaching or conducting research, you can find Josh running, hiking with his dog Julio, cooking his beloved Southern food, listening to live music, and cheering on each of WSU athletics’ teams. Go Cougs!





Research Interests

Josh Taylor’s research focuses on promoting lifelong success for individuals with autism and developmental disabilities through implementation of evidence-based practices in inclusive school, work, and community settings. He has published extensive peer-reviewed research related to the transition from school to work, with particular focus on ensuring equity for students and young adults from traditionally marginalized groups. Much of his work focuses on leveraging partnerships with various community, state, and national stakeholders in order to implement research-based recommendations in policy and practice.

Selected publications

  • Taylor, J., Thoma, C., L., Scott, L., Broda, M., Wehman, P., & Whittenburg, H. (2023). Inclusive educational & vocational predictors of postsecondary education for youth with intellectual and developmental disabilities. International Journal of Inclusive Education. Online ahead of press.
  • Taylor, J., Scott, L., Thoma, C., Bruno, L., Howard, R., & Dayton, M. (2023). We have to stand up for ourselves: Barriers to self-determination experienced by Black youth. Journal of Intellectual Disabilities. Online ahead of press.
  • Avellone, L., Taylor, J., Wehman, P., Inge, K., & Brooke, V. (2023). State-level analysis of subminimum wage use for individuals with disabilities in the United States: Implications for policy and practice. Research and Practice for Persons with Severe Disabilities, 48(3), 127–138.
  • Taylor, J., Avellone, L., Brooke, V., Wehman, P., Inge, K., Schall, C., & Iwanaga, K. (2022). The impact of competitive integrated employment on economic, psychological and physical health outcomes for individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities. Journal of Applied Research in Intellectual Disabilities, 35(2),  448–459.
  • Taylor, J. P., Whittenburg, H. N., Rooney-Kron, M., Gokita, T., Lau, S. J., Thoma, C. A., & Scott, L. A. (2022). Implementation of Pre–Employment Transition Services: A Content Analysis of Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act State Plans. Career Development and Transition for Exceptional Individuals, 45(2), 60-70.

Areas of Expertise

  • Transition from K-12 to adulthood
  • Autism and other intellectual and developmental disabilities
  • Inclusive and equity-focused education
  • Teacher education
  • Policy

Teaching/Professional Interests

Josh Taylor teaches a range of courses in Special Education and Teaching & Learning. He believes strongly in the potential of all students to succeed in school and work when provided with the right instruction and support based on evidence-based practices. Teaching students with disabilities is a passion for Josh, and one that he loves sharing with current and future teachers. Josh draws from over 10 years of experience in promoting improved outcomes for people with disabilities in education and employment as a special education teacher and autism specialist in Arlington Public Schools (VA), as a Research, Training, and Technical Assistance Associate with the Virginia Commonwealth University’s Rehabilitation Research and Training Center (VCU-RRTC), and most recently as an Assistant Professor with the University of Maine. Professionally, Dr. Taylor is a member of the Council of Exceptional Children and is actively involved in the Division on Career Development and Transition (DCDT) and the Division on Autism and Developmental Disabilities (DADD).


  • American Association on Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities (AAIDD) Student and Early Career Scholarship Recipient (2021)
  • Council on Exceptional Children Division on Career Development and Transition (DCDT) Sitlington Dissertation Award Finalist (2020)
  • Doctoral Fellowship, U.S. Department of Education Office of Special Education Programs (VCU- Research to Policy Advocacy Leadership Project)
  • VCU Graduate School Travel Scholarship (2019-20)
  • VCU School of Education Faculty Merit Award (2018 & 2017)