Earning a Degree in Applied Behavior Analysis

Discover how to earn a degree in Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA) and unlock endless career opportunities. Learn from industry experts and gain the skills to make a positive impact on individuals with special needs. Explore comprehensive programs and start your journey towards becoming a certified behavior analyst today.

Earning a degree in Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA) presents numerous opportunities to understand and modify behavior in diverse fields such as education, healthcare, and business. This scientific approach involves the application of principles of learning to change human behavior. ABA is commonly employed to help individuals with autism and other developmental disorders improve their social, communication, and learning skills. This article aims to provide an overview of the requirements for earning a degree in Applied Behavior Analysis and also suggest some institutions where such a program is available.

Requirements for Earning a Degree in Applied Behavior Analysis

Entry into an Applied Behavior Analysis degree program typically requires a bachelor's degree from an accredited institution. While some programs may not require a specific major, having a background in psychology, education, or healthcare could be advantageous. Potential students may also need to submit their Graduate Record Examination (GRE) scores, letters of recommendation, and a personal statement.

The coursework for a degree in Applied Behavior Analysis focuses on teaching students how to apply behavioral principles to modify behavior in various settings. Core courses may include Behavior Assessment, Research Methods in ABA, Ethics for Behavior Analysts, and Intervention Strategies in ABA. Some programs also require students to complete a thesis or a capstone project.

In addition to coursework, the Behavior Analyst Certification Board (BACB) mandates that individuals seeking certification must complete a specific number of supervised practical experience hours. This requirement ensures that students gain hands-on experience in the application of ABA principles.

Schools Offering Degrees in Applied Behavior Analysis

  • The University of Southern California (USC) offers a Master of Science in Applied Behavior Analysis. It is a two-year program that prepares students for leadership roles in the implementation and administration of applied behavioral analytic principles and methods. More information can be found on their website.
  • The Florida Institute of Technology (FIT) also offers a degree program in ABA. The Master’s Degree in Professional Behavior Analysis is a 24-month program that combines coursework with an intensive practicum experience to satisfy the BACB’s experience requirements, preparing students for a career as a behavior analyst. Visit their website for more details.
  • Finally, the University of Kansas, recognized for its research and contributions to the field of applied behavior analysis, offers a Master's in Applied Behavioral Science. This program includes comprehensive coursework, research experience, and supervised practice. More information can be found here.

Earning a degree in Applied Behavior Analysis is a significant commitment, but it can open the door to a rewarding career helping individuals improve their lives through behavior change. The requirements for this degree involve rigorous coursework and practical experience to ensure students are equipped with the necessary skills and knowledge. Institutions such as the University of Southern California, Florida Institute of Technology, and the University of Kansas provide quality degree programs in ABA. Prospective students should carefully consider their career goals, resources, and academic background when deciding to pursue this degree and choosing the right program.