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Master of Arts in Applied Behavior Analysis

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Interested in Pursuing a Career in Applied Behavioral Analysis?

The Department of Psychology offers a BACB approved Master's Degree in Applied Behavior Analysis to individuals who work in a number of different settings such as schools, including traditional and special education classrooms, business and industry specific employers, healthcare, and other community based environments.

Why Westfield?

All courses are offered weekdays during the evening, making the program flexible and accommodating. Upon completion of this program, students are eligible to sit for the BCBA exam to be a Board Certified Behavior Analyst.

Our program allows you to complete the curriculum on a full or part time basis, with classes being offered in Fall, Spring and Summer sessions.

Read about our Applied Behavior Analysis program in MassLive!

How much will it cost?

We offer affordable programs. Please visit our Tuition and Fees Page with up to date costs.

Admissions requirements for MA programs in Psychology- Applied Behavior Analysis:

  1. A Bachelor's degree from an accredited college or university.
  2. Applicants with a firm foundation in psychology, education, or related field are highly preferred. [Note - an applicant with a degree in an unrelated field may enhance their application through the successful completion of undergraduate course(s) in Statistics, Child or Adolescent Development, Personality, Abnormal Psychology, Counseling, and/or Behavior Modification, as appropriate to the targeted degree program.]
  3. A 3.0 overall undergraduate GPA.
  4. Applicants must submit the Graduate Admissions application specifying Applied Behavior Analysis AND whether they would like to attend full-time or part-time.
  5. Official transcripts from all colleges and universities attended indicating a bachelor's degree from an accredited college or university.
  6. Applicants must submit three letters of reference, including at least one academic reference.
  7. Applicants must submit a personal statement that describes (1) reason for interest in the field, (2) assessment of personal strengths and limitations, and (3) goals of graduate study.
  8. Applicants must submit a professional vitae or resume, including information on prior and/or current volunteer and /or employment positions. Applicants to the ABA program should indicate whether or not BCBA supervision is available in their current employment setting.
  9. Applicants selected for interviews must attend a formal interview with members of the graduate admissions committee.
  10. Applicants may  transfer in up to 6 graduate credits toward their degree program. These transferred courses may not count toward BACB-approved core courses in the ABA program.
  11. In extraordinary circumstances, one or more of the above requirements may be waived by the graduate admissions committee.

Deadlines and Notice of Decision:

Our Master of Applied Behavior Analysis program is available to begin in the Fall semesters only. The application deadline is February 1st of each year. Students can expect a decision on or about April 15. Accepted students may be requested for an interview.

Due to the competitive nature of this program, we require a nonrefundable “competitive program deposit” of $150.00 within 10 days of acceptance. This deposit is used to ensure your space in the program. The deposit is applied to your first registration as a matriculated student in the Fall semester immediately following your acceptance. If we do not hear from you within 10 days, we will assume you have selected an alternative direction, and we will close your matriculation.

Throughout diverse settings, behavior analysts consult with a wide variety of medical professionals, therapists, educators, families, as well as provide direct services to children and adults diagnosed with mental illness, traumatic brain injury, developmental disabilities and Autism. Our graduate program will prepare students to conduct descriptive and systematic behavioral assessments and to provide behavior analytic interpretations of the results.

Students will learn to design and supervise behavior analytic interventions in a range of cases, and will have the knowledge and skills to perform an appropriate evaluation of treatment. The graduate may teach and supervise others (e.g., students working towards certification) in carrying out ethical and effective behavior analytic interventions based on published research.

Candidates will be subject to an ongoing dispositional assessment coordinated by the faculty advisor in collaboration with cooperating course instructors, faculty supervisors, and site supervisors. In order for a candidate to advance academically from semester-to-semester, advance to a Field Placement or graduate with an M.A. Psychology degree, they must hold no unresolved “0” or “-1” scores in their dispositional record*.

*Any candidate who fails to achieve and maintain a satisfactory level on the Dispositional Assessment will be subject to review by the Graduate Committee in Psychology who may determine that the candidate can proceed without intervention or may work with the candidate (or provide a designated faculty member to work with the candidate) on a remedial plan. The Graduate Committee in Psychology may also decide the candidate is not eligible to proceed academically or proceed to Field Placement. If a candidate’s assessment displays “0” or “-1” scores, the Graduate Committee in Psychology may remove them from a Field Placement.

Applied Behavior Analysis - 48 Credits

Required Courses - 30 Credits

PSYC 0633 - Behavioral Consultation
PSYC 0643 - Ethics for Behavior Analysis
PSYC 0646 - Principles of Applied Behavior Analysis
PSYC 0647 - Autism and Developmental Disability
PSYC 0648 - Behavior Analysis Applications: Ethics, Assessment, and Intervention Decisions
PSYC 0649 - Behavioral Interventions
PSYC 0651 - Single Subject Research Methodology & Design
PSYC 0660 - Theoretical Foundations of Behavior Analysis
PSYC 0662 - Clinical Behavior Analysis
PSYC 0664 - Experimental Analysis of Behavior

Elective Courses - 6 Credits

PSYC 0554 - Psychology: Special Topics
PSYC 0606 - Organizational Behavior Management
PSYC 0642 - Behavioral Pharmacology
PSYC 0671 - Thesis I: Applied Behavior Analysis
PSYC 0672 - Thesis II: Applied Behavior Analysis

Practicum Series - 12 Credits

PSYC 0693 - Practicum I: Applied Behavior Analysis
PSYC 0694 - Practicum II: Applied Behavior Analysis
PSYC 0695 - Practicum III: Applied Behavior Analysis
PSYC 0696 - Practicum IV: Applied Behavior Analysis

Prerequisite, Concentration or Other Requirements: PSYC 0646 is prerequisite to the following courses: PSYC 0647, PSYC 0648, PSYC 0649, PSYC 0651.

Students complete PSYC 0693, PSYC 0694, PSYC 0695, PSYC 0696 in succession over 4 academic terms, excluding summer months.

Students electing the Thesis Option must complete PSYC 0671 - Thesis I: Applied Behavior Analysis prior to PSYC 0672 - Thesis II: Applied Behavior Analysis.

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