Applied behavior analysis is a subject area that not many people are aware of. It is the study and practice of applying psychological theory to real-life situations in the hope of changing behavior. There are a few ways that you can study a master’s degree in this subject, so if you are interested in a career change or aren’t sure of the pathways to get there, this is how you can start!
The University Pathway
If you are wanting to take a master’s degree in applied behavior analysis and you are wanting to go to university or college, then there are a few subjects that can help you on your way. When you are applying to college’s make sure that you keep this end goal in the back of your mind when you are selecting what courses you want to major in. Subjects such as psychology, sociology, and maths are all excellent to have, as they all feed into the theory of psychology, human behavior, and the statistical analysis behind the theory.
If you are going to pursue college to get your master’s degree in applied behavior analysis and have relevant experience but haven’t got a degree, you can apply to a graduate school and take the GRE to see if you can gain entry. The GRE is a benchmarking exam that helps colleges see if you have the relevant experience in the correct field for study. The GRE doesn’t test you on the subject that you want to be studying at a masters level, rather it focuses on other key attributes that can easily be benchmarked across an array of subjects. The exam is broken down into verbal reasoning, quantitative reasoning, and analytical writing. It seeks to work out whether or not the candidate can reason at various levels and draw sound conclusions when limited data is available. You are limited as to which schools will accept a GRE entrance exam, so you will have to research this first.
How To Prepare For The GRE
You will need to prepare before you take the GRE. Practice will be needed to help score well on the GRE as this is the sort of test that you need to prepare for well in advance. As aforementioned it is broken down into three categories, you will need to look at past test papers to see what types of questions have been asked. First, take an old text in the same conditions as the GRE and work out your base point, from there find out where your weaknesses are, so you can work on them. The mathematics section of the test can be easily practiced, but make sure you practice with and without a calculator. If you are unsure of where to start on preparation for your GRE, there is an array of resources that can help. There are also tutors that specialize in this test that you can reach out to, who will be able to guide you through and assess you throughout your journey.
Don’t worry if you don’t have a bachelor’s degree in psychology or any type of behavioral sciences, as you don’t necessarily need one to gain access to a master’s degree in this field. If you have come from nursing, or social work, there is an array of colleges that will accept you if you have the correct experience. If you have worked with children on the spectrum, then you are already well placed to take a master’s degree in this field, likewise, if you have been a nurse in a psychiatric ward, you’ll find yourself well places for a master’s degree such as this.
Applied behavior analysis isn’t a widely recognized subject, but it is one that is far-reaching. There is an array of applications once you are qualified and it can provide you with a level of job satisfaction that you might not be able to find anywhere else. If you are thinking of going to college to eventually study a master’s degree, then you would do well to study behavioral sciences first. If you are currently working, then you can take a GRE to gain entry into a master’s course, if you have the relevant background and work experience. If you aren’t sure where to start with your GRE journey, first contact the college you want to study at and make sure they accept the exam and form there contact a tutor. This way you can be sure that you will get the right information you need to pass.