M.A. in Applied Psychology: Applied Behavior Analyst (ABA)

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Applied behavior analysts use their evidence based assessment and interventions to produce meaningful and socially significant changes in behavior in community, home, educational and work settings.

Applied Behavior Analysis Highlights

  • Provides training in evidence-based practices in Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA) to support to clients, community members and family members across a variety of settings

  • Designed to fill the critical need for highly trained behavior analysts

  • Prepares students for certification as a Board Certified Behavior Analyst (BCBA)

  • Career opportunities include working with children with autism spectrum disorders

About Rider's Program

Students in Rider’s Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA) graduate program learn how to apply behavioral principles to solve performance problems, build new behaviors and strengthen existing appropriate behaviors. Students will gain a compassionate understanding of individual differences and the skills needed to develop strategies that will impact behavior and learning.  Through a combination of coursework and supervised practical experiences, students completing this program will earn a master’s degree in Applied Psychology and meet the Behavior Analysis Certification Board (BACB) requirements for taking the exam to become Board Certified Behavior Analysts.

Rider’s convenient location between Philadelphia and New York City, offers rich opportunities for internship placements and employment as an applied behavior analyst in education, business, and non-profit organizations.

The Added Value of National Certification Preparation

The Behavior Analyst Certification Board, Inc.® (BCBA) has verified the Rider University’s ABA core course sequence as meeting the coursework requirements for eligibility to take the Board Certified Behavior Analyst Examination®. Applicants will have to meet additional requirements to qualify. Access information from the BACB about the pass rates of verified course sequences.

This important credential will increase your marketability as a practitioner.

Course Information

Required Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA) Core (24 credit hours)

  • Introduction to Applied Behavior Analysis
  • Principles of Learning
  • Observational Methods and Functional Assessment
  • Single Subject Research Design and Analysis
  • Creating Effective and Ethical Behavior Intervention
  • Language Assessment and Intervention
  • Social Skills Assessment and Intervention
  • Field Placement in Applied Behavior Analysis

Electives Courses (12 credit hours — any 4 courses listed below)

  • Psychological Tests
  • Cognitive Development
  • Interventions for Individuals with Developmental Disabilities
  • Interventions for Individuals with Autism Spectrum Disorders
  • Health Psychology
  • Advanced Developmental Psychology
  • Drugs and Human Behavior
  • Psychology of Family
  • Developmental Psychopathology
  • Aging, Brain and Cognition
  • Independent Research and Study
  • Selected Topics in Applied Psychology (topic varies each semester)

Special Career Opportunities in Autism Spectrum Disorders

Over the past 20 years, the number of children identified with autism spectrum disorder has grown steadily, with New Jersey leading the nation in diagnosed cases.

In recent years, applied behavior analysis (ABA) has shown remarkable success in helping students learn, particularly children with autism spectrum disorders, as well as individuals with other developmental disabilities, intellectual disabilities, and brain injuries. With the growing number of children and adults presenting with unique behavioral challenges and requiring additional supports, mental health providers, agencies and school districts are increasingly seeking the services of professionals with highly specialized training in ABA.

As a result, board certification as an applied behavior analyst is becoming increasingly important, providing professionals with enhanced training and credentials to work with children and adults with autism and other developmental disabilities.

Rider University’s ABA program is designed to respond to this demand regionally and nationally.  Students gain real-world experience through field placement, networking, and mentoring as a result of our longstanding, successful relationships with nationally recognized schools and organizations providing services for individuals with disabilities.

Distinguished Faculty

Rider students learn from the best. Our professors are dedicated and passionate teachers. Our faculty members have strong faculty expertise in behavior analysis, research methods and applied research, as well as developmental disabilities and special education. The psychology department has longstanding, successful relationships with nationally recognized, local private schools providing services for children with disabilities.

Become a Board Certified Behavior Analyst – Call today: 609-896-5036