NEWPORT, R.I. – Salve Regina University’s new 36-credit master’s degree in applied behavior analysis (ABA), the first program of its kind in the state, will train students to work in one of the fastest growing professional areas in psychology.
The program, which is currently enrolling students for fall 2013 classes, incorporates the six master’s-level courses and practicum experience required by the Behavior Analyst Certification Board (BACB) to sit for the national certification exam. Graduates of this program who successfully complete BACB certification are prepared to work in a variety of settings, such as law enforcement and corrections, business, hospitals and treatment centers.
The combination of coursework and practicum experience allows students to explore integration of theory and practice necessary to build strong skills in the field. Coursework is offered in areas such as ethics and professional conduct, measurement and data analysis, behavior change techniques, assessment and systems management.
Best known as a treatment for children with autism, applied behavior analysis is a scientifically valid, systematic approach to behavior change that examines variables that influence social behaviors. With the prevalence of autism growing (the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates autism prevalence in the United States to be 1 in 50 – National Center for Health Statistics, 2013), ABA represents one of the fastest growing professional areas in psychology.
“There is a desperate need for trained ABA professionals,” said Dr. Sheila Quinn, Salve Regina’s graduate director in psychology. “Salve Regina’s master’s in ABA is the only program in the state of Rhode Island whose curriculum has been reviewed and approved by the Behavior Analysis Certification Board.”
In addition to the master’s degree in applied behavior analysis, Salve Regina offers a certificate of advanced graduate studies (CAGS) in ABA for those students who have completed a master’s degree in a related field and are interested in seeking national certification as an applied behavior analyst.
Salve Regina also offers a post-baccalaureate certificate program for those students who have a bachelor’s degree and want to complete the assistant behavior analysis courses. For more information on these programs, please visit Salve Regina University’s graduate studies web page on www.salve.edu/graduatestudies.