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What are BCBA certification programs?

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BCBA certification programs are educational programs offering required courses of study for potential board-certified behavior analysts. The programs also prepare candidates for the BCBA certification examination.

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Board certified behavior analysts provide detailed behavioral assessments, analyze results and design interventions to discourage undesirable behavior. They provide behavioral support in schools and community environments. The Behavior Analyst Certification Board is the organization that determines the standards necessary for certification in behavioral analysis. The BACB maintains international standards for granting certification and is accredited by the National Commission for Certifying Agencies. The board also administers the BCBA examinations several times a year.

Board-certified behavior analysts must have the necessary applied skills and academic training and must pass the BCBA examination to be certified. A minimum of a master’s degree from a BACB-approved institution is required in order to become a board-certified behavior analyst. The BACB lists appropriate degrees on its website. English, occupational therapy and other similar degrees are acceptable. In addition to a master’s degree, certain coursework is necessary before becoming eligible to take the BCBA certification examination. This coursework includes content areas specific to behavioral analysis such as discretionary behavior and experimental evaluation of interventions.

Many universities offer BCBA certification programs. The BACB has a list of more than 240 approved universities on its website. Approved courses are also available online. Some online courses can be completed in 16 months.

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