A master’s in ABA is a degree needed to work in the field of behavior analysis. A master’s degree and certification in ABA is often required when students want to become licensed to work in the field of behavior analysis. You will also need to obtain the BACB’s Board Certified Behavior Analyst designation if you want to work as an independent ABA in the field.
It’s important to choose a graduate program that has been accredited. This gives you the best opportunity to obtain the qualifying designation.
Choosing a Masters in ABA
A board-certified behavior analyst can earn a significant amount annually, but it depends on their role. The 2019 median pay was around $46,240, though some people earn $80,000 or even more depending on their specialties. The Bureau of Labor Statistics predicts a 23% increase in the number of jobs available for substance abuse, behavioral disorder, and mental health counselors between 2019 and 2029.
The following is a list of the top 15 schools where you can earn a master’s in ABA. These are ranked from best to worst based on tuition and enrollment. If you are still interested in learning more, let us help you find the right educational program for your schooling.
The Top 15 Schools for a Masters in ABA
1. McNeese State University
McNeese State University tops our list with 14 ABA master’s awarded each year and an MA in Psychology with a concentration in ABA available. Students do need a GRE to enter into this program.
• Tuition (in-state): $5,703
• Enrollment: 7,295
2. University of Nevada
The University of Nevada offers an MA in Psychology with a specialization in behavior analysis. GRE scores are needed to apply to the program, which is conducted with a junior-colleague model.
• Tuition (in-state): $5,306
• Enrollment: 20,993
3. St. Cloud University
St. Cloud University has an MS in Applied Behavior Analysis available online and on campus. The program requires a GRE for entrance and has one of the highest pass rates of any online-format program.
• Tuition (in-state): $7,460
• Enrollment: 13,049
4. Caldwell University
Located in Caldwell, New Jersey, Caldwell University offers an MA in Applied Behavioral Analysis. Students need to have a GRE or MAT to enter the program unless they already hold a master’s degree. The program does require students to complete an original thesis with the principles of ABA.
• Tuition (in-state): $17,910
• Enrollment: 2,206
5. Endicott College
Endicott College is located in Beverly, Massachusetts, and offers several ABA degrees with various focuses such as autism, special education, and non-licensure special education. No entrance exams are required, and small classes make this a good program for students.
• Tuition (in-state): $12,555
• Enrollment: 4,741
6. Southern Illinois University
Southern Illinois University offers an MS in Behavioral Analysis and Therapy. This is an on-campus program that also has a blended and weekend/online format available. The program requires an internship and thesis.
• Tuition (in-state): $11,268
• Enrollment: 11,695
7. California State University
California State University offers an MS in Counseling with a focus on Applied Behavior Analysis. No entrance exam is required to enter into this program, which is beneficial for those without a GRE.
• Tuition (in-state): $7,176
• Enrollment: 38,674
8. University of North Texas
The University of North Texas offers an MS in Behavior Analysis. This program requires a GRE and accepts students from around the world. It was the first program of its kind to get the BAAB-ABAI accreditation.
• Tuition (in-state): $5,900
• Enrollment: 39,336
9. Teachers College, Columbia University
Located in New York City, Teachers College at Columbia University offers an MA in Teaching as Applied Behavior Analysis. This program only accepts between 15 and 25 students to its program annually. A GRE is required for admission.
• Tuition (in-state): $40,800
• Enrollment: 4,489
10. University of Kansas
At the University of Kansas, students can get an MA in Applied Behavioral Science. This course doesn’t require a GRE, but it is encouraged. Only four ABA master’s degrees are awarded annually from this competitive program.
• Tuition (in-state): $9,989
• Enrollment: 27,552
11. Florida Institute of Technology
At the Florida Institute of Technology, students can get an MA in Applied Behavior Analysis on campus. They can also get a dual degree in organizational behavior management. The GRE may be required for this program.
• Tuition (in-state): $22,338
• Enrollment: 6,022
12. University of South Florida
The University of South Florida offers an MS or MA in Applied Behavior Analysis with on-campus or online options. The programs do require students to have passed the GRE. The classes come in 8-week seminars with 1,000 hours of supervised experience.
• Tuition (in-state): $8,350
• Enrollment: 44,246
13. Eastern Michigan University
In Ypsilanti, Michigan, Eastern Michigan University required a GRE for entrance into the Clinical Behavioral MS program. This program includes behavioral analysis, psychological assessment and psychotherapy.
• Tuition (in-state): $18,912
• Enrollment: 17,784
14. University of Cincinnati
The University of Cincinnati offers an EdS in School Psychology. This program requires a GRE for entrance but does award 258 general school psychology master’s degrees annually. The two-year program requires a 10-month internship.
• Tuition (in-state): $12,790
• Enrollment: 39,263
15. Ohio State University
Ohio State University offers an MA in Educational Studies and Special Education with an ABA emphasis. This degree requires current GRE scores unless the incoming student has a GPA of 3.0 or better. The program is accredited by the Behavior Analysis Accreditation Board of ABAI.
• Tuition (in-state): $11,560
• Enrollment: 61,391
In this article, we have listed the schools above from our preferred school to the least preferred. These are ranked based on tuition and enrollment, with higher tuition rates and enrollment being negative. Every effort has been made to provide accurate information. Keep in mind that the list is not guaranteed and may be altered at any time.
Does Your School’s Ranking Concern You?
If you work at one of these schools and are concerned about your ranking, the information provided here, or have questions about anything at all, please contact us. We’re happy to speak with you about this list and can update information as needed. If you’d like to have your school represented here, let us know!