Applied Behavior Analysis Program (Ph.D.)

  • Program Overview

    Become a leader in the field of applied behavior analysis.

    The Ph.D. in Applied Behavior Analysis is a research-based program preparing you to teach at the university level or work as a scientist-practitioner involving business/industry, developmental disabilities (including autism), education, and public policy.

    Applied behavior analysis is devoted to the understanding and improvement of human behavior by:

    • Objectively defining and measuring the behavior under question, while
    • Demonstrating a reliable relationship between the procedures employed and the behavioral improvements gained, by
    • Utilizing methods of science, including description, quantification, and analysis.

    The Ph.D. program will be offered simultaneously in both classroom-based as well as a synchronous online format, affording students living outside of the Greater Boston area the opportunity to complete the program from their home countries without the need to relocate.

    Applicants must have completed a master’s degree in applied behavior analysis or the equivalent. It is recommended that applicants be a licensed behavior analyst or an active BCBA certificant of the Behavior Analysis Certification Board. Review doctoral program admission requirements here.

    ABA
  • Curriculum

    Application Requirements

    Doctoral applicants are required to have earned a master's degree from an accredited college or university. Candidates for the doctoral program must apply to the Van Loan School at Endicott College using the online application found at endicott.edu/VanLoan/Van-Loan-Admissions. General application requirements for all doctoral programs include submission of:

    • Official transcripts of all post-secondary academic work sent directly from the institution(s) including confirmation of undergraduate degree, date confirmed, and any other graduate work;
    • Non-refundable $50.00 application fee (check made payable to Endicott College, cash or online) Application fee waived for veteran and military students;
    • Current resume and/or curriculum vitae;
    • Official copy of scores from the Graduate Record Exam (GRE);OR Official copy of scores from the Miller Analogies Test (MAT);
    • Three letters of recommendations. Recommendations should address scholarly potential;
    • Personal Statement: An original 6-10 page (double-spaced, 12 pt. font) personal statement should address the following questions.
      • 1. What relevant knowledge, skills, and experiences will you contribute to your doctoral study?
      • 2. In what ways will doctoral study support your academic, professional and/or personal goals?
      • 3. What would be your ideal apprenticeship and why?
    • Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) for all students whose native language is not English; minimum score of 550 (pa- per-based) or 79 (iBT) is required. Endicott also accepts an IELTS score of 6.0 or better.
    • Writing Sample: In addition to the personal statement, doctoral applicants are asked to submit a short paper (limit 10 pages), double-spaced, in APA format, responding to the following question: What are the most critical challenges facing Behavior Analysts today?

      • The writing sample will be evaluated for evidence of: thoughtful analysis, ability to develop main points and support claims, focus and organization, academic style, use of sentence variety and vocabulary to convey meaning clearly, control of sentence structure, language, grammar and punctuation;

    • An admission interview is required of all candidates, which will be scheduled after application review

    Conditional Admission to the ABA Doctoral Program
    A student may be conditionally admitted to the ABA Doctoral Program at the Program Director's discretion. A student is eligible for conditional admission for the following reasons:

    • A student needs additional time to complete admissions requirements. Students seeking conditional admission for this reason should have completed the online program application, paid the application fee and submitted a substantial majority of the required application documentation.
    • It is determined by the program director that a prospective student must demonstrate the ability to succeed in the program prior to full acceptance

    Students requesting conditional admission are first required to speak with the ABA program director. The director's written approval is required for conditional admission. Once approved by the ABA program director, a conditionally admitted student may take either one or two courses as determined by the Director during their first semester in the program. Conditional admission is offered to allow a conditionally admitted student to take courses only in the ABA doctoral program.

    Conditional admission is valid for a student's first semester only. If a student has taken one or two courses in the ABA doctoral program as a non-degree student as allowed by Endicott College policy he or she is not eligible for conditional admission.

    A student who is conditionally admitted must complete all requirements of the ABA doctoral admission process. No admissions requirements for candidates for the ABA doctoral program may be waived for conditionally admitted students. If a conditionally admitted student does not complete the admissions requirements stipulated by the Van Loan School Academic Catalog within their first semester in the program, the student will not be allowed to register for future classes until such requirements are completed in full.

    A student granted conditional admission is not guaranteed admission to the ABA Doctoral Program. In all other respects conditionally admitted ABA doctoral students are required to adhere to policies that are in effect for traditionally admitted ABA doctoral students.

    International Applicants for Graduate Admission
    Endicott College welcomes and encourages applicants from around the world. International applicants are required to hold a college or university degree equivalent to a four-year American baccalaureate degree. Educational documents in a foreign language are required to be translated into English. All transcripts and translations of transcripts must be official originals and must show courses completed, grades received, grading scale, duration of study, degree or diploma received, and the date conferred. Endicott College reserves the right to request verification of the credentials by an external agency.

    International applicants must submit current TOEFL scores when their native language is not English or when their baccalaureate transcript is not from an institution where English is the language of instruction. Once students have been admitted as degree candidates, Endicott College will send detailed instructions about the process for acquiring an Endicott-sponsored student visa.

    Program of Study

    Learning Outcomes

    Upon completion of the program, students will: 

    • Organizes the knowledge, principles, and skills of Applied Behavior Analysis in the conduct of problem-oriented research
    • Formulate research questions that are in keeping with a problem-oriented model
    • Design problem-oriented research projects to provide evidence-based solutions to socially significant problems
    • Demonstrate skill in planning curriculum and instruction, delivering effective instruction, managing classroom climate, promoting equality and meeting professional standards
    • Analyze and compare previous research solutions to topics within the scope of Applied Behavior Analysis

    Required Curriculum

    Core Courses - 24 Credits

    ABA 701 - The History of Behavior Analysis
    ABA 705 - Behaviorism and Philosophy of Science
    ABA 710 - Conditioning and Learning
    ABA 715 - Verbal Behavior and the Science of Human Behavior
    ABA 720 - Professional and Ethical Issues in Behavior Analysis
    ABA 730 - Research Methods and Applied Behavior Analysis
    ABA 745 - Experimental Design & Analysis
    ABA 760 - Technology of Teaching Seminar

    Electives - 6 Credits

    Must Take Two (6 credits)

    ABA 735 - Advanced Seminar in ABA Research
    ABA 740 - Analysis & Intervention in Developmental Disabilities
    ABA 751 - Research in Social Skills Training
    ABA 754 - Behavioral Research on Complex Skill Acquisition
    ABA 758 - Bridging the Gap: The Scientist-Practitioner Model
    ABA 761 - Topical Seminar

    Immersion Experiences - 9 Credits

    ABA 762 - Clinical Immersion
    ABA 765 - Research Immersion Practicum I
    ABA 766 - Research Immersion Practicum II

    Additional Requirements - 21 Credits

    ABA 855 - College Teaching Practicum
    ABA 865 - Research Tool Demonstration
    ABA 870 - Research Project
    ABA 886 - Qualifying Examinations
    ABA 891 - Doctoral Dissertation I
    ABA 893 - Doctoral Dissertation II

    Total Degree Requirements - 60 credits


    View academic catalog and learning outcomes
  • Careers and Internships

    An education from the Van Loan School of Graduate and Professional Studies at Endicott College means you'll have access to premiere career resources—long after you graduate.

    Whether you're finishing your undergraduate study, adding new credentials, or working toward a new career path, you'll find resources through our Internship and Career Center to help you get where you want to go. From career advising to resume support, we're here to prepare you for your next step.

    View Internships and Careers

Institute for Behavioral Studies

For more than a decade, Endicott's Institute for Behavioral Studies has been on the forefront of research, academics, and knowledge sharing related to improving lives for those with autism or other behavioral challenges.