What is Applied Behaviour Analysis?

Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA) is the process of behaviour analysis to better understand and improve behaviors in order to teach a variety of skills (e.g., communication, adaptive skills, toilet training, and feeding). Interventions using the principle of ABA have been empirically shown to be effective in increasing socially appropriate behaviors and decrease problem behaviors (e.g., tantrums, aggression, non-compliance) for individuals with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) and intellectual disabilities (National Autism Center, 2009; Wong et al., 2014). Although ABA has received most of its recognition in treating individuals with autism and intellectual disabilities, ABA has also been used to encourage positive behaviour change and improve quality of life for individuals struggling with behaviour addictions (e.g., gambling, weight loss, substance abuse), sports and fitness, mental health (e.g., ADHD, Depression), organizational behaviour management (OBM), forensics, and education. Learn more about other areas that ABA is being used in. 

What is a BCBA?

BCBA stands for Board Certified Behaviour Analyst. In order to become a BCBA, a person must have obtained a Masters degree in a human service field like Behaviour Analysis and they must have completed special graduate level course work in Behaviour Analysis during their Masters program. In addition to the course work, they must have obtained 2000 hours of supervised experience under someone who is a BCBA or someone who has been approved by the Behavior Analysis Certification Board (BACB).

Once a person has obtained their Masters and 2000 hours of supervised experience, they then are eligible to apply to write the certification exam. If they pass the exam, they are then considered a BCBA. For more information relating to the certification process, see www.BACB.com.