An Intervention Specialist Master's Degree with an ABAI®-Verified Course Sequence
The Special Education Master of Arts – Intervention Specialist: Applied Behavior Analysis Emphasis program prepares educators with knowledge and skills in the area of Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA) and leadership, for preparation to sit for the Board Certified Behavior Analyst® (BCBA®) exam.
This Special Education Program Blends in School Psychology Coursework
Learning outcomes include...
- Concepts and foundations of applied behavior analysis
- Measurement and experimental design
- Identifying functions or problem behavior
- Designing, implementing and evaluating interventions
- Behavior change systems
- Management and supervision
- Application of applied behavior analysis through the lifespan, including individuals with cultural and linguistic diversity, autism, traumatic brain injury and extremely challenging behaviors.
Includes an ABAI-Verified Course Sequence
This graduate program prepares educators to become leaders in schools and communities in the area of applied behavior analysis. Because the ABA coursework is an Association for Behavior Analysis International® (ABAI) verified course sequence, those who complete this emphasis will fulfill the coursework and graduate degree requirements to take the examination for certification as Board Certified Behavior Analysts (BCBA).
Time to Completion:
Delivery Option & Start Term:
Online program: start Fall or Spring term
This online program has been designed to fit around your schedule, with an accelerated delivery that lets you focus on one course at a time.
- Each term you will take two courses back-to-back, with 8-week sessions in the Fall and Spring and 6-week sessions in the Summer.
- An optional orientation will be offered on-campus in Greeley, Colorado.
Required Coursework (30 Credit Hours)
To see the upcoming courses, visit this program's Current Students page.
Core Intervention Specialist Courses (9 Credit Hours)
- EDSE 670 Legal and Policy Foundations of Special Education (3)
- EDSE 672 Leadership in the School Community (3)
- SRM 600 Introduction to Graduate Research (3)
Applied Behavioral Analysis Emphasis Coursework (21 Credit Hours)
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 (see below) before they can be deemed eligible to take the examination.
The ABAI-verified content hours by category are listed after each course.
- EDSE 630 Applied Behavior Analysis I (3) – 30 hours in Identification & Assessment; 10 hours in Intervention & Behavior Change Considerations
- EDSE 632 Ethics in Applied Behavior Analysis (3) – 45 hours in Ethical & Professional Conduct
- EDSE 633 Applications of Applied Behavior Analysis (3) – 10 hours in Behavior Change Systems; 10 hours in Implementation, Management & Supervision; 30 hours Discretionary
- SPSY 627 Philosophical Underpinnings of Applied Behavior Analysis (2)
- SPSY 628 Concepts and Principles of Applied Behavior Analysis (3) – 45 hours in Concepts & Principles of Behavior Analysis
- SPSY 629 Measurement and Experimental Design in Applied Behavior Analysis (3) – 25 hours in Measurement (including Data Analysis); 20 hours in Experimental Design
- SPSY 631 Applied Behavior Analysis II (4) – 45 hours in Fundamental Elements of Behavior Change & Specific Behavior Change Procedures
Additional Requirements by the BACB® For Your BCBA Credential
The Behavior Analyst Certification Board® (BACB) is an organization that credentials behavior analysts who have...
Completed an ABAI-verified course sequence such as this one;
Accrued sufficient field experience hours [To qualify at the BCBA level, the BACB requires supervisees to complete 1,500 hours of Supervised Independent Fieldwork in behavior analysis - UNC can provide some support for supervision hours for master's students to contribute to this requirement] and;
Demonstrated proficiency in the field via the BCBA examination. UNC will provide simulated exams and other student exam preparation tools for all students. Note: pass-rate data are not published for sequences with fewer than six 1st-time candidates in a single year or for sequences within their 1st four years of operation.
For full details, see the official program listing in the UNC Graduate Catalog.
- This is one of two emphasis options for the Special Education Master of Arts – Intervention Specialist program. If you want a program more focused on overall leadership and advanced skills in Special Education intervention, see our Special Education MA: Intervention Specialist – Academic Coaching & Leadership Emphasis.
- Students who already have a graduate degree in behavior analysis, education or psychology, and are only interested in the BACB-verified course sequence can instead pursue the Applied Behavior Analysis Graduate Certificate.
- Learn more about the School of Special Education Faculty.
- Learn more about the UNC School Psychology Faculty.