Master's Degree Program Highlights
The master’s degree in psychology with a concentration in Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA) program at McNeese provides students with a well-rounded educational experience. Students acquire a firm foundation in behavior analytic principles and procedures through coursework, completion of an empirical thesis, and on-site supervised practicum experience at the McNeese Autism Program (MAP).
MAP is an outpatient treatment center that provides ABA services to individuals diagnosed with neurodevelopmental disorders, such as autism spectrum disorder, intellectual disability, attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder, and genetic disorders such as down syndrome. These services are designed to improve patients’ quality of life by reducing maladaptive behavior and establishing adaptive, academic, communication, feeding, independent living, social, and vocational skills. MAP serves approximately 30 patients of various ages and diagnoses, whose programs are implemented by graduate students, supervised by a team of BCBAs, and overseen by the ABA program faculty. Students in the campus program gain a breadth and depth of clinical experience that will prove invaluable following graduation.
The combination of a rigorous course sequence, research experience, on-site practicum, and outstanding faculty creates scientist-practitioners who excel in their professional environments.
Prepare to take the Board Certified Behavior Analyst exam with this nationally and internationally accredited degree
A Board Certified Behavior Analyst is a nationally certified behavioral health care professional who provides and supervises behavioral health care services. A BCBA® is qualified to address behavioral problems of social significance, within their areas of expertise, at an individual or group level. McNeese’s ABA program prepares students with all coursework requirements necessary to sit for the BCBA® exam. The campus program provides students with the supervised experience (practicum) required to sit for the board exam. Students obtain on-site supervised experience through internships at MAP.
McNeese’s on campus ABA program is the only graduate program in the State of Louisiana—and one of only twenty-three programs worldwide—that is accredited by the Association for Behavior Analysis International (ABAI). Our on campus, online, and graduate certificate programs are ABAI Verified Course Sequences (VCS) meaning the Association for Behavior Analysis International has verified the following courses toward the coursework requirements for eligibility to take the Board Certified Behavior Analyst® or Board Certified Assistant Behavior Analyst® examination. Applicants will need to meet additional requirements before they can be deemed eligible to take the examination.
At a Glance
Degree Type: Master of Arts (M.A.)
Degree Program: Psychology
Program Length: 2 years
Availability: online, in person
Two ways to earn your degree
Accredited by the Association for Behavior Analysis International, McNeese's on campus program incorporates a five course internship sequence and on-site placement at MAP.
Earn your ABA master's degree on your own schedule with our online degree option. Students obtain off-campus internship placements through approved supervisory Board Certified Behavior Analysts. Off-site experience/practicum sites and supervisors must be approved by the ABA program faculty.
What can you do with a degree in applied behavior analysis?
Past McNeese ABA graduates have been successful in securing clinical BCBA positions prior to or within weeks of graduation. Many students have secured job placements as board-eligible candidates prior to sitting for their BACB credentialing exams. Recent McNeese ABA graduates work as clinical BCBA staff members in local/regional centers in Southwest Louisiana and Texas. Employers have reliably found that our alumni are highly skilled and well-rounded in their knowledge of ABA. Alternatively, some students choose to pursue doctoral degrees upon graduation. Opportunities for further study and career paths with this degree include:
Graduate Schools or Programs
- PhD in Applied Behavior Analysis
- PhD in Experimental Psychology
Potential Credential and Job Titles
- Board Certified Behavior Analyst®
- Clinical Supervisor
- ABA Service Provider
- Behavioral Consultant
- Training Coordinator
- Animal Behavior Consultant
- School Behavior Analyst
- Special Education Assistant
- Non-human Animal Behavior
- Developmental Disabilities
- Behavioral Gerontology
- Behavioral Health and Technology
- Verbal Behavior
- Organizational Behavior Management
- School-Based Behavior Analysis
- Gambling, Addiction, Substance abuse
Students can join a variety of clubs and networking opportunities on campus, including the Autism Society at McNeese, the international honor society in psychology Psi Chi, and the Student Association for Methods in Behavior Analysis (SAMBA).
Our students stay active in the ABA community by presenting at local, regional, and international conferences, including the Louisiana Association for Applied Behavior Analysis Conference, the Texas Association for Applied Behavior Analysis Conference, and the annual convention of the Association for Behavior Analysis International. Students are also encouraged to participate in regularly held fundraising events for MAP.
The Department of Psychology and MAP are located in Farrar Hall on the McNeese campus, which houses office suites, session rooms, classrooms, and research laboratories including a rat laboratory and vivarium.
|Number of students whose degrees were conferred by the program.||9||20||17||7||6|
|Median years until graduation for students whose degrees were conferred by the program.||2||2||2||2||2|
|Number of students enrolled in the program on January 1st of the reporting year.||22||33||33||26||18|
|Number of students no longer enrolled for any reason other than conferral of degree.||0||1||0||0||3|
|Number of completed applications received.||47||42||52||45||27|
|Number of students admitted during the reporting year.||17||21||25||22||16|
|Number of Core Program Faculty Members.||4||3||3||2||3|
|Number of Other Contributors.||0||0||9||7||7|
|Number of first-time candidates sitting for their Board Certified Behavior Analysis (BCBA) examination.||8||18||11||–||8|
|Percentage of first time candidates passing the BCBA certification.||89%||85%||73%||–||50%|
|Number of graduates obtaining a master- level state license as a behavior analyst.||8||14||5||5||3|
|Median undergraduate grade point average (GPA) for applicants admitted (report on a 4-point scale).||3.5||3.4||3.9||3.36||3.38|
|Median score on GRE combined (verbal + quantitative)||292||289||289||293.5||291.5|
Programs Related to the Master's in Applied Behavior Analysis
Not sure if the master's degree in psychology with a concentration in applied behavior analysis is right for you? Check out these other master's degree programs at McNeese and talk about your options with a recruiter.
Dr. Cam Melville, Ph.D. - ABA Program Integrity Director