In order to apply for board certification as a Behavior Analyst or an Assistant Behavior Analyst (after you complete your program here at Antioch University New England) you will need to follow some complex directions outlined by the Behavior Analyst Certification Board
Our ABA classes have been approved by BACB as meeting the educational coursework requirements you will need to sit for the exam. Applicants will have to meet additional requirements to qualify for certification. One of these is having completed clinical supervised experience.
All the regulations pertaining to this process are outlined on the BACB Changes in Standards page, and we strongly encourage you to visit that site to inform yourself fully about the Board’s regulations.
What we discuss below pertains to applying for certification as a Board Certified Behavior Analyst (BCBA). Bachelor’s level students can only be certified as Board Certified Assistant Behavior Analysts (BCaBA), which has different clinical and supervision requirements . But AUNE is encouraging all its ABA students to train to the higher standards of the BCBA clinical supervised experience.
If you enroll in AUNE’s ABA certificate program, you will be required to familiarize yourself with these regulations and it will ultimately be your responsibility to ensure your clinical supervised experience meets BACB standards.
At this point, however, you need this information to decide whether your current job can serve as your clinical supervised experience – known to BACB as “Supervised Independent Fieldwork” – or whether you need to apply for a placement through Antioch University New England – known to BACB as “Practicum”. (Note: BACB describes a category called “Intensive Practicum”. This option is not available through AUNE’s ABA program.)
The BACB regulations are a little hard to find on their site, so we include here an overview of their Supervised Independent Fieldwork and Practicum requirements, and we describe how these requirements align with Antioch University New England’s practicum options.
Amount of Supervised Experience Required
Supervised Independent Fieldwork: Students must complete 1500 hours of Supervised Independent Fieldwork in behavior analysis. The distribution of Supervised Independent Fieldwork hours must be at least 10 hours per week, but not more than 30 hours per week.
Practicum (completed as part of a University program only): Students must complete 1000 hours of Practicum in behavior analysis within a university experience program approved by the BACB. The distribution of Practicum hours must be at least 10 hours per week, but not more than 30 hours per week.
Amount of Supervision Required
Supervised Independent Fieldwork: Students must be supervised at least once every 2 weeks for 5% of the total hours they spend in Supervised Independent Fieldwork. Total supervision must be at least 75 hours. A supervisory period is two weeks.
Practicum**: Students must be supervised at least weekly for no less than 7.5% of the total hours they spend in University Practicum. Total supervision must be at least 75 hours. A supervisory period is one week.
COMPARISON OF CATEGORIES
|Total hours required||1500||1000|
% of total hours
|Total number of
|Frequency of supervisor contacts||1 every 2 weeks||1 every week|
Onset of Experience:
Students may not start accumulating experience until they have begun the coursework required to meet the BACB coursework requirements.
Appropriate Student Activities
In helping you to determine if you can use an existing job as your clinical supervised experience, here is a listing of appropriate activities that BACB requires:
The student’s primary focus should be on learning new behavior analytic skills related to the BACB Fourth Edition Task List. Activities must adhere to the dimensions of applied behavior analysis identified by Baer, Wolf, and Risley (1968) in the article Some Current Dimensions of Applied Behavior Analysis published in the Journal of Applied Behavior Analysis.
Students are strongly encouraged to have multiple experiences (e.g., sites, populations) and with multiple supervisors from each of the activity areas below.
Appropriate experience activities include:
- Conducting assessment activities related to the need for behavioral interventions (e.g., stimulus preference assessment, functional assessment, staff performance assessment),
- Designing, implementing, and systematically monitoring behavior analysis programs for clients,
- Overseeing the implementation of behavior analysis programs by others,
- Training, designing behavioral systems, and performance management,
- Other activities normally performed by a behavior analyst that are directly related to behavior analysis, such as attending planning meetings regarding the behavior analytic program, researching the literature related to the program, and talking to individuals about the program.
Examples of activities that are not appropriate as experience activities include: attending meetings with little or no behavior analytic content, providing interventions that are not based in behavior analysis, doing non-behavior analytic administrative activities, and completing nonbehavioral assessments or any other activities that are not directly related to behavior analysis.
Clients may be any persons for whom behavior analysis services are appropriate. However, the student may not be related to the client or the client’s primary caretaker. Students must work with multiple clients during the experience period.
The supervisor may not be related to, subordinate to, or employed by the supervisee during the experience period. Employment does not include compensation received by the supervisor from the supervisee for supervision services.
In addition to holding the BCBA or BCBA-D credential, as of December 31, 2014 supervisors will now need to:
- pass a post-certification, competency-based, BACB-approved training module/workshop on supervising pre-certification individuals; AND
- pass an online, competency-based training module on BACB experience standards (at www.BACB.com); AND
- obtain three hours of continuing education related to supervision during each certification cycle.
Contractual and Ethical Considerations:
The supervisor and student must execute a written contract prior to the onset of the experience that states the responsibilities of both parties, delineates the consequences should the parties not adhere to their responsibilities (including proper termination of the relationship), and includes an attestation that both parties will adhere to the BACB Guidelines for Responsible Conduct. The parties should pay particular attention to Sections 1, 2, and 3 of the Guidelines and consider the supervisor to be the client of the student except as noted above.
Nature of Supervision:
The purpose of supervision is to improve and maintain the behavior-analytic, professional, and ethical repertoires of the supervisee and facilitate the delivery of high-quality services to his/her clients. Effective behavior-analytic supervision includes:
- Development of performance expectations
- Observation, behavioral skills training, and delivery of performance feedback
- Modeling technical, professional, and ethical behavior
- Guiding behavioral case conceptualization, problem-solving, and decision-making repertoires
- Review of written materials (e.g. behavior programs, data sheets, reports)
- Oversight and evaluation of the effects of behavioral science delivery
- Ongoing evaluation of the effects of supervision.
The supervisor must observe and provide feedback to the supervisee on his/her behavior-analytic activities with a client in the natural environment during each required supervisory period. In-person, on-site observation is preferred. However, this may be conducted via web cameras, videotape, videoconferencing, or similar means in lieu of the supervisor being physically present; synchronous (real-time) observation is strongly encouraged.
Supervision may be conducted in small groups for no more than half of the total supervised hours in each supervisory period. Small groups are interactive meetings in which 2 to 10 supervisees who share similar experiences participate in the supervision activities described above. If non-supervisees are present during the meeting, their participation should be limited so as to increase the interaction opportunities of supervisees. The remainder of the total supervision hours in each supervisory period must consist of individual supervision.
The Supervision Contract:
The supervisee and supervisor must execute a written contract prior to the onset of the experience. The purpose of the contract is to protect all involved parties and align experience activities with the purpose of supervision described under Nature of Supervision. The contract should:
• State the responsibilities of the supervisor and supervisee; and
• Include a description of the appropriate activities and instructional objectives; and
• Include the objective and measurable circumstances under which the supervisor will sign the supervisee’s Experience Verification Form when the experience has ended; and
• Delineate the consequences should the parties not adhere to their responsibilities (including proper termination of the relationship); and
• Include a statement requiring the supervisee to obtain written permission from the supervisee’s on-site employer or manager when applicable; and
• Include an attestation that both parties will adhere to the Guidelines for Responsible Conduct for Behavior Analysts and the Professional Disciplinary and Ethical Standards.
The supervisee and supervisor are responsible for retaining and providing to the BACB, if requested, a copy of the contractual agreement.
Documentation of Supervision:
University supervisors are responsible for providing documentation for each supervisory period on a feedback form provided by the BACB, or with an independently constructed form that contains the following elements:
- Date of each supervisory meeting
- Duration of each supervisory meeting
- Format of each supervisory meeting (i.e. individual or small group)
- An evaluation of supervisee performance
- The total experience hours obtained during the supervisory period
- The total individual and small-group supervision hours obtained during the supervisory period
- Date lines for supervisor and supervisee indicating when the form was completed and signed
- Signature lines for supervisor and supervisee
The supervisor must review the completed feedback forms with the student each supervisory period. The university supervisor is responsible for retaining copies of the forms. Forms must be kept by the supervisor for at least seven years, and the
Policies and Forms
ABA Field Supervisor’s Handbook – Policies and procedures for students who are seeking an Antioch practicum. This includes information on site requirements and a draft practicum contract.
ABA Experience Verification Form – Used for Antioch practicum students to tack their contact hours at an Antioch practicum.
ABA Supervised Independent Fieldwork Tracking Form- Used to track hours for those students who are using their job as a supervised independent fieldwork.
Practicum Information Form – A form used by students to convey correct contact/mailing information for their practicum sites. This is completed at the beginning of the fall semester and returned to the Professional Seminar leader at the beginning of class.
BACB Fieldwork and Practicum Experience Supervision Form - BACB Form used to record supervision sessions.
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