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The Master of Science in Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA) program will train you to be an exceptional behavior analyst who has the skills to improve quality of life for people with behavioral challenges, including children and adults with developmental needs. You will also gain experience, and knowledge, in cutting edge research in the field of ABA. Behavior analysts successfully use ABA techniques across a variety of populations and settings to bring about meaningful and positive change in behavior. Behavior analysts are employed in numerous fields, including general and special education, mental health, disability, business, and institutions of higher learning. There is a high demand for individuals who finish their degree and obtain certification who then can practice as independent educational specialists or clinicians. The Behavior Analyst Certification Board, Inc. has approved the course sequence as meeting the coursework requirements for eligibility to take the Board Certified Behavior Analyst Examination. Applicants will have to meet additional requirements to qualify.

In our program, you’ll learn the conceptual foundations of ABA and how these behavioral principles are applied to improve behavior. Central to this program is a collaboration with the MU Thompson Center for Autism and Neurodevelopmental Disorders, which serves as the primary practicum site to give you an exceptional experiential learning opportunity working with individuals with developmental needs.

Degrees Offered

Applied Behavior Analysis, Master of Science

On Campus

Admission Criteria

  • Deadline for Fall entrance: March 1

Minimum Language Requirements

Click here to view the minimum English language proficiency test scores

Required Application Materials

For the Graduate School

  • Completed Graduate School online application
  • Unofficial Transcripts- As part of the application submission process, all applicants are required to upload unofficial copies of all post-secondary transcripts to the online application. Official transcripts are only required if accepted by the academic program.
  • Official Results of English Proficiency Exams (International applicants only)

For the Applied Behavior Analysis Program

  • Statement of purpose, around 500 words, in which you summarize your professional goals, including career objectives, research interests, your motivation for advanced graduate work and other pertinent information
  • CV/Resume
  • Three letters of recommendation
    • The letters should attest to your professional competence, academic preparation and potential for graduate work.
    • Ideally, two letters should be from college or university professors who can discuss your academic abilities, and one should be from an administrator or colleague who can describe authoritatively your professional experience and potential.
    • Letters are submitted through the online application system.
  • GRE score from the past five years
  • Personal data sheet (built into the Graduate School online application)

Applied Behavior Analysis, Graduate Certificate

On Campus

View Federal Gainful
Employment Disclosure

Officially approved as:

Stand Alone: Yes
Degree Dependent: Yes

Total Credit Hours: 18

Certificate description: A Graduate Certificate in Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA) program will train you to be an exceptional practitioner of ABA-based interventions to improve quality of life for people with behavioral challenges, including children and adults with developmental needs. MU graduate students can complete the certificate program while pursuing a degree, and the certificate also complements the skills of recent graduates and experienced professionals who want to specialize in ABA. The program is designed to meet eligibility requirements to sit for the Behavior Analyst Certification Board’s (BACB) Board Certified Behavior Analyst (BCBA) exam. This course sequence is approved by the Behavior Analyst Certification Board (BACB).

In our program, you’ll learn the conceptual foundations of ABA and how these behavioral principles are applied to improve behavior. Central to this program is a collaboration with the MU College of Education and the MU Thompson Center for Autism and Neurodevelopmental Disorders. Partnership with the College of Education allows for shared courses taught by professors from the School of Health Professions and the College of Education, and the MU Thompson Center serves as the primary practicum site to give you an exceptional experiential learning opportunity working with individuals with developmental needs.

Application Process

  • Current Mizzou Graduate Students: Complete the Change of Program Form and submit the form directly to the Applied Behavior Analysis program.
  • New/Returning Mizzou Graduate Students: Students new to Mizzou or former Mizzou graduate students returning after a semester break or longer, should complete the Graduate Application for Admission. Please include the application materials listed below in your online application.

Required Application Materials

  • Unofficial transcript: Please upload all of your undergraduate and graduate unofficial transcripts.
  • Personal data sheet (built into the Graduate School online application)
  • Statement of purpose, around 500 words, in which you summarize your professional goals, including career objectives, research interests, your motivation for advanced graduate work and other pertinent information.
  • Resume/CV: Please make sure to include the month/year for the start and end dates of all work experience.
  • One Letter of Recommendation
    • The letter should attest to your professional competence, academic preparation and potential for graduate work.
    • Ideally, the letter should be from college or university professors who can discuss your academic abilities, or from an administrator or colleague who can describe authoritatively your professional experience and potential.
    • Letters are submitted through the online application system.


Program website, click here.

For information about certificate, contact:
Dr. Karen O’Connor
Email: OConnorKV@health.missouri.edu

Dr. Casey Clay
Email: claycj@health.missouri.edu
Phone: (573) 884-6052
Address: Thompson Center for Autism & Neurodevelopmental Disorders, University of Missouri, 205 Portland St. Columbia, MO 65211

Federal Gainful Employment Disclosure

Graduate Certificate in Applied Behavior Analysis
Program Length12 months
Program Costs
  • $6,948 for in-state tuition
  • $12,074 for out-of-state tuition
  • $1,130 for mandatory fees
  • $1,026 for books and supplies
  • This College charges an additional $98.00 per credit hour for course fee.
  • All tuition and fees are subject to change. A student’s residency (e.g., resident vs. nonresident), location (e.g., on campus vs. online) and enrollment level (i.e., number of credit hours taken) effect tuition and fee costs. Visit the MU Cashiers Office website for more program cost information.
Median DebtFewer than 10 students completed this program within normal time. This number has been withheld to preserve the confidentiality of the students.
Licensure RequirementThe following states do not have licensure requirements for this profession:
Missouri
Other InformationFor more information about graduation rates, loan repayment rates, and post-enrollment earnings about this institution and other postsecondary institutions, please click here: https://collegescorecard.ed.gov/.


These disclosures are required by the U.S. Department of Education