A board certified behavior analyst is a licensed mental health professional who applies the principles of behavioral psychology to assist clients overcome social, emotional and behavioral problems. Below explains what they do, how to become one and who certifies board certified behavior analyst.
What Does a Board Certified Behavior Analyst Do?
A board certified behavior analyst has many mental health care related duties and responsibilities. First, they must administer, conduct, evaluate and supervise behavioral assessments. This includes both functional and industry standard assessment measures. They must provide effective delivery of evidence-based behavior services through designing behavior support plans based on assessment results. They must successfully recruit, treat and maintain clients through providing personalized goals and treatment objectives for clients and group programs. Therefore, they must create and maintain formal documentation, such as mental health assessments, and plans for internal and insurance purposes. They regularly enter quantifiable behavioral data into industry standard information systems.
They must also regularly review progress reports, evaluate behavior plans and achievement of individual goals and program objectives. They must also generate written reports that contain behavioral highlights and recommendations for staff, caregivers and other personnel. A board certified behavior analyst will work with other mental health care professionals to provide comprehensive services. This must continually collaborate with staff regarding the client’s progress, struggles and achievements. Finally, they must strive to improve service improvements through integrating new techniques, seeking professional development and supporting evidence-based practices.
How To Obtain the Board Certified Behavioral Analyst Certification?
There are three ways for applicants to obtain the BCBA certification through the Behavior Analyst Certification Board (BACB). First, the applicant must have an accredited graduate degree, proof of coursework in behavior analysis and a supervised period of practical experience. Second, the applicant must have an accredited graduate degree, supervised experience and a full-time job that involves researching and teaching behavior analysis. The third option is that applicants have an accredited doctoral degree and at least 10 years of hands-on experience.
How to Maintain the BCBA Certification?
The BACB certification program has two types of certifications: two-year and three-year. Keep in mind that the three-year recertification cycle is being phased out by the Behavior Analyst Certification Board. Still, the three-year BCBA cycle requires 36 hours of continuing education hours every three years. The two-year cycle requires 32 hours of continuing education credits every two years. Both cycles require ethics classes. One hour of college coursework equals one continuing education credit (CEU). One academic semester credit equals 15 CEUs. Candidates must also continue to agree to the ethics standards of behavior analysis practices and complete the renewal and re-certification applications.
The Behavior Analyst Certification Board
The Behavior Analyst Certification Board is a non-profit organization that provides professional training and credentials to behavior analysts. Their goals are to protect clients of behavior analysis services by methodically establishing, endorsing, and distributing professional exams and standards. They offer different certifications, which include registered behavior technician and board certified behavior analyst – doctoral. However, the board certified behavior analyst is the most common accreditation sought by graduate-level independent practitioners of behavior analysis.
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A board certified behavior analyst is a certified mental health care professional who provides beneficial services to clients. Working as a board certified behavior analyst allows practitioners to help others while enjoying a rewarding career.