The Master of Science in Applied Behavior Analysis degree program teaches students to become independent practitioners of applied behavior analysis.

The Master of Science degree in Applied Behavior Analysis prepares students with training in the science of learning and behavior and prepares them to work as Board Certified Behavior Analysts (BCBA).   Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA) is a scientific approach to the study of behavior.  Behavior analysts work directly with individuals to improve their social, educational, health, adaptive skills, and behavioral outcomes through the development of programming based upon the principles of ABA.  Behavior analysts are trained to describe behavior, explain, predict, and analyze the occurrence and non-occurrence of behavior, and change behavior through the development of programming based on ABA principles.

Through coursework firmly grounded in theory, with an emphasis on application of theory to socially significant and effective practice, the M.S. in ABA program provides students with an excellent foundation to meet the proficiencies mandated by the Behavior Analyst Certification Board (BACB).  Students will be prepared to complete the required supervised field work and sit for the Board Certified Behavior Analyst (BCBA) examination. Pass-rate data for University of Michigan-Dearborn candidates are not available at this time.  Pass-rate data are not published for sequences with fewer than six first-time candidates in a single year or for sequences within their first four years of operation. Pass-Rate Data is available at the BACB website.

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BCBAs provide services within mental health, educational, and human services environments that may include collecting and analyzing data, writing and evaluating behavior intervention plans, training others to implement components of treatment plans, and overseeing the implementation of treatment plans.  BCBAs are qualified to provide services to individuals with a variety of needs such as academic performance, skill deficits (e.g., communication, adaptive behavior and functional skills), and problem behavior (e.g., aggression, self-injurious behavior), and social interactions.  BCBAs also provide supervision to Board Certified Assistant Behavior Analysts (BCaBA) and Registered Behavior Technicians (RBT).

The program usually takes between 1.5 to 2.5 calendar years to be completed, depending on the course load each semester. Students may attend the program full- or part-time. Evening courses are available.

What will I Learn?

Graduates of the Master of Science in Applied Behavior Analysis will:

  • describe and apply the principles of Applied Behavior Analysis to a variety of behavioral issues across a range of clinical, educational, pre-vocational, vocational, home, and community settings;

  • describe and demonstrate behavioral assessment procedures, hypothesis development, and functional analysis methodology;

  • describe and demonstrate the principles and practices of single-subject research methodology;

  • acquire and demonstrate skills related to the education and treatment of individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities and other mental health needs;

  • acquire skills that demonstrate an understanding of the physical, educational, and mental health needs of individuals who have had adverse childhood experiences.

Visit the University Catalog to learn more about required coursework for the M.S. in Applied Behavior Analysis. Students can also learn about the 4+1 Accelerated Program  that is designed for undergraduate students from any major who have the interest, and demonstrated ability, to pursue the MS in Applied Behavior Analysis.

Admission Requirements

Students must submit the follow items with their application.

The GRE is not required for admission to this program. The Office of International Affairs lists additional admission requirements for international students.

  • Bachelor's degree from an accredited institution
  • Official transcripts from all post-secondary institutions attended
  • 3.0 GPA or higher on submitted transcripts
  • Three professional letters of recommendation
  • Personal statement

Completion Requirements

Before exiting from the M.S. in Applied Behavior Analysis, you need to complete two steps:

  1. Apply for graduation.
  2. Submit an Exit Survey.

Exit Survey:

The purpose of this survey is to assist the College of Education, Health, and Human Services with the evaluation of the master’s degree program and to serve as a guide for program development. The Exit Survey is a requirement for completion of the program. Submit the exit survey.

Course Offerings

The following is the schedule of courses for the MS in Applied Behavior Analysis. Please follow the schedule closely with assistance from your academic advisor as course patterns are subject to change.

  • Fall Course Offerings
    Course # Course Title Hrs Term
    EDC 506 Applied Behavior Analysis I 3 Odd/Even Years
    EDC 514 Early Child Ed Special Needs 3 Odd/Even Years
    EDC 516 Research Methods Behavior Analysis 3 Even Years
    EDC 622 Science and Human Behavior 3 Even Years
    EDT 530 Assistive Technologies 3 Odd/Even Years
  • Winter Course Offerings
    Course # Course Title Hrs Term
    EDC 507 Applied Behavior Analysis II 3 Odd/Even Years
    EDC 508 Intro to Developmental Disabilities 3 Odd/Even Years
    EDC 539 Child Maltreatment and Trauma 3 Odd/Even Years
    EDC 623 Ethics in ABA 3 Odd/Even Years
  • Summer Course Offerings
    Course # Course Title Hrs Term
    EDC 580 Behavioral Assessment 3 Odd/Even Years
    EDC 624 Prog Develop, Super & Mgmt 3 Odd/Even Years

Department Contact Information

CEHHS Office for Student Success
262 Fairlane Center South (FCS)
313-593-5090
cehhs-oss@umich.edu

Academic Advisor

Kim Killu, Ph.D., LLP, BCBA-D, LBA
kimkillu@umich.edu
313-593-5240, D17 FCS

Schedule an advising appointment with Dr. Killu.

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