The USC University Center of Excellence in Developmental Disabilities at Children’s Hospital Los Angeles was founded in 1966. It is one of 67 UCEDDs in the nation, which were authorized under the Developmental Disabilities Assistance and Bill of Righs Act (DD Act) of 1963. The USC UCEDD has a 50-year history of promoting the well-being of persons with developmental disabilities through training, research and evaluation, community services, technical assistance, information dissemination, and policy development. UCEDDs work to accomplish a shared vision that foresees a nation in which all Americans, including Americans with disabilities, participate fully in their communities. Independence, productivity and community inclusion are key components of this vision.

UCEDDs have played key roles in every major disability initiative over the past four decades. Many issues, such as early intervention, health care, community-based services, inclusive and meaningful education, transition from school to work, employment, housing, assistive technology, and transportation have been directly benefited by the services, research, and training provided by UCEDDs.



UCEDDs are part of the National Network of University Centers for Excellence in Developmental Disabilities Education, Research and Service authorized under the DD Act, with Protection and Advocacy Agencies and State Councils on Developmental Disabilities in every state.  UCEDDs are unique in the DD network because they are affiliated with universities and help individuals with DD and their families through the following four core function activities:

  • Training graduate students to be future leaders in the DD and related systems through operating Professional Training Programs (Interdisciplinary Pre-Service Training Programs). 

  • Developing and disseminating exemplary Clinical and Community services and supports to address unmet needs of individuals with DD and their families, and providing technical assistance to public, private, and community based organizations to improve their services to individuals with DD and their families, especially those that are currently underserved.

  • Disseminating new and important information to individuals with DD and their families through educational products and training materials we develop, testimonials to the legislature or policy briefs we write, organizing community education events, and publishing articles in professional journals and writing books.

  • Conducting Research (in the laboratory, in places where individuals with DD and their families get services, or in the communities where people live, work, and play).  We want research to find cures and treatments for specific developmental disabilities and related conditions, to evaluate programs and services so we know what works and what doesn’t work, to inform policy and regulations that guide the services and supports people with DD and their families get so they can live, be educated, work, have meaningful relationships, and contribute to their communities.

The USC UCEDD has expertise in the following focus areas:

Early intervention, prevention, infant mental health
Autism Spectrum Disorders
Racial disparities, equity, and cultural proficiency
Behavioral health

A welcome message

From Dr. Larry Yin, MD, MSPH

Our mission

To provide leadership in strengthening family-centered, culturally-competent services and systems for the benefit of individuals with, or at risk for, developmental, behavioral and/or special health care needs and their families in partnership with those who utilize the services.

Our Division 

Little girl with pediatrician

General Pediatrics 

The Division of General Pediatrics in the Department of Pediatrics at Children's Hospital Los Angeles provides comprehensive diagnostic and treatment services that begin at birth and continue throughout childhood and adolescence.

Our expert physicians, nurses and support staff provide patients and their families with a wide range of well-child care, acute care and specialty services in a family-centered atmosphere. In addition, staff have particular expertise caring for children with special health care needs and developmental disabilities, the economically underprivileged and victims of child abuse and neglect.

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Our services

We provide services that are sensitive to the needs, values, and beliefs of not only the individual, but also the entire family. We provide clinical services to more than 5,000 individuals each year and our interdisciplinary training programs reach more than 16,000 parents, students and professionals.



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