Popular Accredited BCBA Programs and Certification in Nevada [2024 Guide]

BCBA (Board Certified Behavior Analyst) programs in Nevada equip you with essential skills to positively impact individuals needing behavioral support. Designed for your success, they open doors to various career opportunities in this expanding field.

In a BCBA program, you will learn how to effectively help individuals with behavioral needs, a skillset increasingly sought after in many professional settings. With comprehensive training and practical experience, these programs prepare you to make a significant impact in people’s lives.

Some of the popular BCBA degree programs in Nevada are outlined below. Use this list to get familiar with these programs and get your college search underway!

Best Accredited BCBA Programs and Certification in Nevada - Online ABA Masters

BCBA Programs in Nevada

Listed below are some of the popular schools offering BCBA programs in Nevada:

  • University of Nevada, Reno
  • University of Nevada, Las Vegas
  • Capella University
  • Simmons University
  • National University
  • Simmons University
  • Walden University

University of Nevada, Reno

Online Master of Science in Behavior Analysis

The University of Nevada, Reno offers a Master of Science degree in behavior analysis, designed to build upon your undergraduate knowledge. This program is suitable for those aiming for doctoral studies or careers in government, as well as in public and private sectors. It offers a comprehensive education and research training in behavior analysis at the Master’s level.

The Association for Behavior Analysis International (ABAI) has verified the coursework requirements of this program for eligibility to take the Board Certified Behavior Analyst (BCBA) examination.

The program is a blend of classroom instruction and hands-on experiential learning. It includes research training, preparation for certification exams, and practical training coordination. This means that you acquire the necessary knowledge and skills for the BCBA certification as part of the program.

Some of the core courses that you will take include:

  • Principles of Behavior
  • Ethics in Psychology
  • Experimental Analysis of Behavior
  • Behavioral Interventions (3 credits)
  • Research Methods in Applied Behavior Analysis
  • Behavior Analysis Practicum
  • Thesis

The program emphasizes various aspects such as the philosophies of behaviorism, the theory and methodology of behavior analysis, research in human and animal behavior, application of behavioral principles in various fields including organizational administration and consultation, instructional design and technology, training for parents and teachers, and dealing with clinical populations, participatory governance, and fiscal management.

The program is also offers thorough training in behavior analysis, fostering specialized interests in basic, applied, and theoretical aspects of this field. The objectives are to provide knowledge of behavior science, develop new knowledge, apply this knowledge for societal betterment, and contribute to the profession’s viability through governance participation.

Unlike other graduate programs in behavior analysis where students must organize their practicum and find a supervisor, the University of Nevada, Reno provides a practical training component designed for flexibility and support. A practical training coordinator assists you throughout your fieldwork experience, from site selection to supervisor collaboration.

There are two types of practicum experiences available: intensive supervised fieldwork and supervised fieldwork.

  • Intensive supervised fieldwork involves 1,500 hours, with 10% supervised by a qualified supervisor and four monthly meetings or observations.
  • Supervised fieldwork requires 2,000 hours, with 5% supervised and two monthly meetings or observations.

You are not required to complete all your supervised fieldwork during the online master’s program. Only half of the required BCBA hours need to be completed within the program. The remaining hours can be fulfilled after completing the master’s program.

The program focuses on empowering students to advocate for themselves. You are given a range of fieldwork hours per month, allowing flexibility to balance education, work, and personal life. The emphasis is on training quality, overseen by the Practical Training Coordinator, and quality is also promoted in the training provided to supervisors.

The practicum courses also include fieldwork coordination and exam preparation. Test preparation modules are integrated throughout the program to ensure you are ready for the BCBA certification exam upon graduation.

To enroll in this online master’s program, you must have completed a four-year bachelor’s degree from an accredited institution with a minimum GPA of 2.75.

To apply, you need to submit:

  • A completed online application
  • Two letters of recommendation
  • A statement of purpose
  • Transcripts from all attended universities or colleges
  • A curriculum vitae (CV)

Upon entering the program, you will be assigned an academic advisor from the core behavior analysis faculty. This advisor assists you during your first semester or until a research advisor is arranged. You and your advisor will develop a tentative study plan, which may include the transfer of previous graduate courses.

University of Nevada, Las Vegas

Master of Education – Special Education

If you hold a baccalaureate degree and are interested in pursuing a master’s degree in special education or early childhood education, with or without licensure, the M.Ed. program at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas is designed for you. You are expected to develop a study plan that aligns with your educational goals.

The program offers various focus areas that can lead to Nevada Department of Education endorsements in Autism, Early Childhood, Early Childhood Special Education, Generalist-Mild Disabilities, Gifted and Talented, Intellectual Disabilities, Teaching English as a Second Language, or other professional areas like Applied Behavioral Analysis.

For the Applied Behavioral Analysis track, you need to complete 24 credits from the following list of courses or other advisor-approved courses:

  • Applied Behavior Analysis
  • Characteristics of Students with Autism Spectrum Disorders
  • Advanced Behavior Management
  • Advanced Educational Strategies for Students with Autism Spectrum Disorders
  • Speech and Hearing Therapy for Classroom Teachers
  • Ethical Evaluation of Programs for Persons with Exceptionalities/Special Needs
  • Advanced Techniques in Applied Behavior Analysis
  • Administration and Supervision of Special Education Programs

Upon completing this program, you will have developed the ability to:

  • Discuss the advantages and disadvantages of current issues and trends in Special Education and Autism Spectrum Disorders.
  • Distinguish between science-based and non-science-based treatments and instructions for individuals with Autism Spectrum Disorders.
  • Describe and clarify the typical developmental, academic, social, vocational, and functional traits of individuals with Autism Spectrum Disorders and their need for varying levels of support.
  • Differentiate among various placement options for students with Autism Spectrum Disorders, including home-based and school-based programs.
  • Aid students, with support from parents and other professionals, in preparing for their transition to adulthood, encompassing employment, community involvement, and everyday life, aiming for full participation in community and decision-making.

To earn your master’s degree from the University of Nevada, Las Vegas, you must pass a comprehensive examination during your last semester of coursework or the following semester. You must apply for this exam, adhering to deadlines set by the Department of Early Childhood, Multilingual, and Special Education. If you fail the comprehensive examination on the first try, you have one more opportunity to retake it during the same semester. A second failure leads to probation, and a third failure results in separation from the program.

You must complete your master’s degree within six years and maintain continuous enrollment during this period, unless you have an approved leave of absence.

To be admitted, you must meet the Graduate College’s admission requirements and the specific requirements of the Department of Early Childhood, Multilingual, and Special Education. These include a minimum GPA of 2.75 for all undergraduate work or 3.00 for the last two years of undergraduate study. If your GPA is below 2.75, you may be admitted provisionally. Additionally, you must submit a 350-400 word letter of application/intent detailing your desired special education concentration, professional and academic goals, and relevant experience.

Capella University

Online Graduate Certificate – Applied Behavior Analysis

Capella offers a 40-credit online Graduate Certificate in Applied Behavior Analysis. This program is designed to positively impact lives, regardless of background. The coursework has been verified by the ABAI, ensuring it meets the requirements for BCBA exam eligibility.

This program not only enhances your existing skills but also allows the credits earned to be applied towards a future MS in Psychology, Applied Behavior Analysis degree at Capella.

Here is an overview of the core courses you will undertake:

  • Basic Foundations in Applied Behavior Analysis: This course equips you with an understanding of the fundamental principles and ideas of behavior analysis science. It enables you to distinguish between therapies that utilize behavior analysis and those that do not.
  • Advanced Concepts in Applied Behavior Analysis: In this course yo will explore the concepts central to the science of behavior analysis. It teaches you to identify various triggers and consequences that influence behavior and to use scientific terminology common in this field.
  • Measurement and Research in Applied Behavior Analysis: This course provides knowledge about common measurement, data display, and experimental methods in applied behavior analysis. You will learn to differentiate between types of measurements and understand their appropriate applications.
  • Behavior Analytic Assessments: In this course, you are taught to apply various assessment approaches in behavior analysis. You will gain skills in evaluating a client’s preferences, needs, and skill strengths and weaknesses.
  • Supervision and Management in Applied Behavior Analysis: This course focuses on applying evidence-based supervision practices for overseeing behavior-analytic programs. It includes learning to implement behavior change methods and developing programs that address verbal behavior, based on Skinner’s analysis.
  • Applied Behavior Analysis Capstone: This final course demonstrates your grasp of ethical and professional conduct, core concepts and principles in behavior analysis, assessment techniques, and implementation of behavior-analytic methods. You will evaluate their effectiveness and showcase your knowledge, scholarship, and research proficiency in Applied Behavior Analysis.

How Do I Become a BCBA in Nevada?

To become a BCBA in Nevada, you must:

  • Hold a master’s degree.
  • Have completed the required ABA course sequence.
  • Have completed the required number of supervised work hours.
  • Pass the BCBA examination

What Degree is Best for BCBA?

The best degree for pursuing a career as a BCBA is typically a master’s degree in behavior analysis, psychology, or education with a focus on behavior analysis. This is because the Behavior Analyst Certification Board (BACB), which grants the BCBA certification, has specific educational requirements that must be met before you can sit for the certification exam. Here’s what to consider:

  1. Master’s in Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA): This is the most direct path. Programs specifically in ABA are designed to cover all the areas required by the BACB and often include supervised fieldwork, which is a requirement for certification.
  2. Master’s in Psychology or Education with a Focus in Behavior Analysis: Some programs in psychology or education offer a specialization in behavior analysis. These can also prepare you for BCBA certification, provided they include the required coursework and supervised experience.
  3. Accredited Programs: It’s important to choose a program that is accredited or has a Verified Course Sequence (VCS) by the ABAI, as this ensures the coursework meets the BACB’s requirements.
  4. Coursework Requirements: Regardless of the degree, the program must cover specific content areas outlined by the BACB. If your chosen master’s program does not include all these areas, you may need to take additional courses to meet the certification requirements.
  5. Supervised Experience: In addition to coursework, you will need to complete a certain amount of supervised practical experience, which is often integrated into ABA-specific programs.

What is the Salary of a BCBA in Nevada?

As of January 2024, the average salary of a BCBA in Nevada is $88,890 per year. Top earning BCBAs in Nevada make over $140,000 per year.

The salary of a BCBA in Nevada can vary widely, indicating that there are likely numerous opportunities for career progression and salary growth depending on your expertise, geographic location, and years of experience.

Is a Career as a BCBA Worth It?

Whether a career as a BCBA is worth it depends on several factors, including your personal interests, career goals, the job market, and the potential financial and personal rewards. Here are some considerations to help you decide:

  • Personal Interest and Passion: If you have a strong interest in psychology, behavior analysis, and working with individuals with behavioral needs, a career as a BCBA can be deeply fulfilling. BCBAs often work with individuals with autism and other developmental disorders, which can be both challenging and rewarding.
  • Educational Investment: Becoming a BCBA requires significant educational commitment, including a master’s degree and specific coursework in behavior analysis, followed by a supervised practical experience and passing a certification exam. Consider if you are ready for this academic journey.
  • Job Market and Demand: There is a growing demand for BCBAs in various settings such as schools, behavioral consultation firms, and private practice. Research the job market in your area or where you plan to work to understand the opportunities and demand.
  • Financial Considerations: While the investment in education can be substantial, BCBAs often earn a competitive salary. Research the typical salary ranges for BCBAs in your region and balance this against the cost of education and certification.
  • Impact on Lives: BCBAs have the opportunity to make a significant positive impact on the lives of individuals they work with. This aspect of the job can be a powerful motivator and source of job satisfaction.
  • Work Environment and Flexibility: Consider the type of work environment you prefer. BCBAs work in a variety of settings, including schools, clinics, and in-home therapy, and some positions may offer flexible scheduling.
  • Continuing Education and Growth: This field requires continuous learning and staying updated with the latest research and techniques in behavior analysis. If you’re someone who enjoys ongoing learning and professional development, this could be a fitting career.
  • Personal and Professional Challenges: Like any career, being a BCBA comes with its challenges, including working with challenging behaviors, administrative responsibilities, and ensuring effective outcomes for clients.

Reflect on these factors in relation to your personal and professional aspirations. It might also be beneficial to talk to current BCBAs, visit workplaces, or engage in informational interviews to gain a deeper insight into the career.

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