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Dr. Melissa K. Ainsworth
PhD, George Mason University
Associate Professor
Special Education: Severe Disabilities
Special Education: Adapted Curriculum
Special Education

Contact Information

Send email to Dr. Ainsworth

Phone: (703) 993-5469
Fax: (703) 993-3681
Email: mainswor (

George Mason University
Fairfax Campus
Finley Building 206A
4400 University Dr.
MS 1F2
Fairfax, VA 22030


Dr. Ainsworth serves as an Instructional Faculty member for the Graduate School of Education. She teaches courses in the Adapted Curriculum Program both in the Severe Disabilities Consortium and in Cohort Outreach programs

Dr. Ainsworth’s research focuses on instructional practices and quality of life issues for individuals with low-incidence disabilities.  Her research involves individuals with intellectual disabilities, autism and physical disabilities across the life span. 

Dr. Ainsworth earned a B. A. in English from West Virginia University and an M.A. in English from the University of Wyoming and she began her career in education as an English teacher.  She later became interested in special education and earned both her M.Ed and Ph.D. in special education from George Mason University.  

Recent Publications