When you are considering a Board-Certified Behavior Analyst career, it is important to consider the current trends in the BCBA job outlook. After all, you’ll be working in a field that highly emphasizes a data-driven approach in ABA therapy, so it makes sense to use the same approach as you seek out employment.
We’ve put together a brief guide detailing behavior analyst demand and how you can use this information to help you join one of the fastest-growing mental health fields in 2021.
BCBA Job Duties and Requirements
Though each clinic and role will vary, a Board Certified Behavior Analyst (BCBA) will generally be expected or required to:
- Conduct functional behavior assessments for children who are diagnosed or potentially have autism spectrum disorder.
- Oversee clinical plan development, therapist assignments, and analyze program data.
- Develop and conduct staff training.
- Provide treatment for people who may benefit from ABA therapy.
- Ensure medical record documentation and protocols are complied with.
- Maintain BCBA certification through the Behavior Analyst Certification Board.
- Maintain Continuing Education Units (CEU) requirements every two years.
There will be other state-required or clinic mandated duties, but these baselines are good to understand as you aspire to enter this rewarding field.
Are BCBAs in Demand?
In a word – yes. More specifically, the demand for BCBAs has grown by thousands of percent over the last decade-plus, and the number of jobs has been rising annually alongside it. States like Arizona, California, Georgia, and Texas are adding BCBA jobs along with other mental health career opportunities rapidly as the field continues to grow.
BCBA Job Outlook and Growth
While past performance does not guarantee future results, there is no sign that BCBA job growth is slowing down. As autism spectrum disorder and other developmental disabilities are being better diagnosed, there continues to be a need for applied behavior analysis.
Similarly, BCBA demand has continued to rise as the importance of experts in the clinical field supersedes unlicensed caretakers that were more prevalent in decades past. Simply put, the job growth we have seen in board certified behavior analysts seems unlikely to turn around any time soon.
What is the Average BCBA Salary?
We are not able to give an exact salary target for BCBAs, as it varies by state, clinic, experience, and a myriad of other factors. However, a blend of salary aggregation sites can give you examples of what BCBA salaries might look like in your state.
For example, Indeed.com shows a range of $55,000 to $130,000 per year for BCBAs in Arizona. However, this range may be only taking certain BCBA roles into account, and you should always explicitly discuss salary, benefits, and any other perks that come along with a BCBA job you are interested in. After all, you are in a field that has high demand for new entrants!
How to Become a BCBA
In order to receive BCBA certification and work as a credentialed analyst, you must meet the requirements of the Behavior Analyst Certification:
- Either a Master’s degree, equivalent graduate-level coursework (225 hours), or a position teaching and researching behavioral analysis.
- Meet supervised experience requirements (varies by year)
- Pass the BCBA exam.
There are many education and work options to fulfill these requirements at each step, and great resources online to guide you.
After you have passed the BCBA exam, it is time to start updating your professional network profiles and apply for jobs using your in-demand status as a BCBA. We recommend reading up on ways you can bolster the beginning of your BCBA career and making sure your first job and clinic are the right fit for you. Ultimately, a BCBA position is as rewarding as you and your clinic make it, and the goal is to be able to help as many children and families as possible.
Are You Ready for a New Career Path?
At Ally Pediatric Therapy, we pride ourselves on having a dynamic team at our clinic that includes top BCBAs in Arizona. We are always looking to bring enthusiastic and hardworking individuals on so that we can continue to help children with autism and their families.If you are interested in learning more about a BCBA position at Ally Pediatric Therapy, please reach out today. We’d love to start a conversation about working together for a brighter tomorrow.