About the Institute on Disability

The Institute on Disability (IOD) was established in 1987 to provide a university-based focus for the improvement of knowledge, policies, and practices related to the lives of people with disabilities and their families and is New Hampshire’s University Center for Excellence in Disability. Located within the University of New Hampshire, the IOD is a federally designated center authorized by the Developmental Disabilities Act. Through innovative and interdisciplinary research, academic, service, and dissemination initiatives, the IOD builds local, state, and national capacities to respond to the needs of individuals with disabilities and their families. Learn more about the IOD at iod.unh.edu.

View the 2021 IOD Annual Report

A University Center for Excellence in Disability


Association of University Centers on DisablitiesThe Institute on Disability is a member of the Association of University Centers on Disabilities (AUCD), a network of 67 university-based Centers located in every state and territory in the United States that receive funding by the Administration on Intellectual Developmental Disabilities (AIDD). Organizationally, AIDD is located within the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services' Administration on Community Living (ACL), the Federal agency responsible for implementation and administration of the Developmental Disabilities Assistance and Bill of Rights Act of 2000 (DD Act). The source of this funding is a discretionary grant program authorized by Subtitle D of the DD Act and is essential for organizational administration and operations by providing a stable base from which the IOD can attract additional support from such sources as local, state, and federal grants and contracts, fees for services, and university support. The IOD, working with the Division of Medical Genetics, Department of Pediatrics, Geisel School of Medicine at Dartmouth, is the flagship for New Hampshire's University Center for Excellence in Disability (UCED).

Since 1963, UCEDs have been working 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.

Centers are in a unique position to facilitate the flow of disability-related information between community and university. Centers work with people with disabilities, members of their families, state and local government agencies, and community providers in projects that provide training, technical assistance, service, research, and information sharing, with a focus on building the capacity of communities to sustain all their citizens. Centers 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 UCEDs.

As a UCED, the IOD is designed to increase the independence, productivity, and community integration and inclusion of individuals with developmental disabilities and works closely with local and state agencies to advance policies and practices that improve the quality of life for children and adults with disabilities and their families.

For more information, visit the AUCD website at aucd.org.