Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA)

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Background -

ABA involves applying interventions based on behavioral principles to improve socially significant behaviors and positively impact lives. Job titles in this field include Board Certified Behavior Analyst (BCBA), Board Certified Assistant Behavior Analyst (BCaBA), Registered Behavior Technician, and Behavior Consultant. Daily activities may include working directly with individuals in various settings (e.g., home, clinic, and school), consulting with school staff to incorporate behavior analytic strategies at the student or classroom level, conducting functional behavior assessments, and supervising and training behavior technicians.

What do people earn in this career? Median salary of $60, 075*

What classes at GVSU may help me to prepare working in Applied Behavior Analysis? Discuss with your advisor, which courses, including those listed below, would best serve your career goals. 

  1. PSY 310 - Behavior Modification
  2. PSY 303 – Psychopathology
  3. PSY 304 - Exceptional Child
  4. PSY 326 - Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities
  5. ABA Graduate Certificate at GVSU – BACB Verified Course Sequence
    1. Master’s degree in psychology, education, or behavior analysis required
    2. 21 credits fully align with the coursework required to take the BCBA exam
    3. Additional supervised fieldwork hours are required to become licensed
    4. Additional information

What skills are important for someone working in this field to have? Strong communication and analytical skills, observation of the environment and individual behavior, the ability to work in a fast-paced setting, a desire to help people, curiosity to learn functions of behavior, interest in collaborating with a team.

Employer Possibilities - 

  1. During undergraduate degree (part-time & without BCBA)
    1. Behavior technician: Work in a clinic, home, or school setting to help children with learning and behavior challenges to build skills and become independent.
  2. As a BCBA, BCaBA, or Behavior Consultant
    1. Work in an Autism Center, Community Mental Health clinic, or a school delivering services based in behavior analysis. 

For Additional on Applied Behavior Analysis -

*Salary – Median salary after 10 year of experience (