Child & Adolescent Psychiatry Fellowship Program

Applications Due
September 30th, 2023

Dulce Madrid

COVID-19 Information



, PhD, MEd

Health Sciences Clinical Professor
Department of Psychiatry and Biobehavioral Sciences
David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA


Dr. Tanya Paparella is a specialist in the field of autism with more than 20 years of intervention and research with children on the autism spectrum. She is a Health Sciences Clinical Professor in the Division of Child Psychiatry at the University of California Los Angeles (UCLA), a licensed clinical psychologist, and Co-Director of UCLA’s KidsConnect Child AutismTreatment Program which is an internationally recognized treatment program for young children with autism.

Dr. Paparella’s formative years in autism intervention were at the Douglas Developmental Disabilities Center at Rutgers University from 1990 to 1996, where she designed, implemented, and evaluated educational programs for children on the autism spectrum. Dr. Paparella received her Ph.D. in Educational Psychology from UCLA and completed a two-year National Institute of Mental Health postdoctoral fellowship in the UCLA Division of Child Psychiatry.

Dr. Paparella oversees the daily activities of KidsConnect staff and is actively involved in the comprehensive evaluation and treatment of children with autism from two to four years of age. She works closely with parents to support and educate them in all aspects of their child’s treatment. Dr. Paparella provides ongoing clinical instruction for students, interns, and M.D. fellows from different specialties. Her clinical and research interests relate to the effectiveness of early intervention –particularly with respect to predictors of best outcome for young children on the autism spectrum. She has authored many scientific publications as well as the book “More Than Hope for Young Children on the Autism Spectrum.”


University of Cape Town, South Africa, B.A.
Rand Afrikaans University, South Africa, Teaching Credential
Rutgers University, New Brunswick, NJ, M.Ed.
UCLA, Post-Doctoral Fellowship, Child Psychiatry

Research & clinical interests

Social communication in young children with autism
Effective intervention for young children with autism and behavior disorders

Roles within the division/Fellowship

Co-director, KidsConnect
KidsConnect Child Autism Treatment
Center for Autism Research and Treatment(CART)
Lecture on topics such as special education, regional centers, educational resources for youth