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Program Overview

Individuals who graduate from the Applied Behavior Analysis program will be skilled and experienced as a behavior analyst in a variety of settings. In the masters program, students will learn how to put data into practice through establishing strategies and activities for children with autism, intellectual, and neurodevelopmental disabilities. At the completion of MSU's Master of Arts in Applied Behavior Analysis (MA-ABA), students will be eligible to take the examination to become a Board Certified Behavior Analyst®.   

Program Highlights 

#13 in Special Education in U.S. News Ranking for 2020

Program Outcomes

In the M.A. in Applied Behavior Analysis program, students can expect small class sizes and hands-on training from faculty members who are leaders in their field. This will lead students to be well-prepared for the national Board Certified Behavior Analyst exam, in fact, Spartans typically surpass the national first-time pass rate (65%) with an MSU average first-time pass rate of 85%. Based on the most recent data available, all students were able to begin a doctoral program or start a job immediately following graduation.

Career Outlook

Due to nationwide standards requiring insurance companies to provide ABA therapy to those in need, there is a high need for individuals with skills such as those gained from the Master of Arts in Applied Behavior Analysis. Career opportunities vary across many fields, supervising ABA therapy for individuals with ASD, counseling, social work, special education and more. These opportunities can be found in clinics, homes, schools or residential treatment facilities with an average starting salary of $60,000+.



  • CEP 845Autism Spectrum Disorders: Assessment and Intervention3 Credits
  • CEP 851Concepts and Principles of Behavior Analysis3 Credits
  • CEP 852 Experimental Analysis of Behavior 3 Credits
  • CEP 853 Functional Behavior Assessment and Behavior Change 3 Credits
  • CEP 854 Ethics in Behavior Analysis 3 Credits
  • CEP 855Verbal Behavior in Education3 Credits
  • CEP 894F Practicum in Applied Behavior Analysis 10 Credits
  • CEP 899 Master’s Thesis Research 6 Credits
  • CEP 942Single-case Experimental Design for Educational Research3 Credits

Admissions and Requirements

To be accepted to this program, you must have:

  1. A bachelor's degree

  2. Previous work experience


  3. Taken the GRE
  4. A written personal statement

    The personal statement should present an interpretive summary of your background, academic interests, and future goals as justification for your admission to a program of graduate study.

  5. 3 letters of recommendation

    Three letters of recommendation are required. Provide contact information for your recommenders and the MSU application system will provide instructions to them.

  6. Official transcripts from all previous schools

To apply to this program:

  1. Complete a university graduate application (Program code: 6771)
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Key Dates

Fall 2021

Application Deadline

January 15, 2021

Tuition & Fees

In State Tuition

  • $29,175
  • Total

Out of State Tuition

  • $56,148
  • Total


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