ABA Programs Available at Western Connecticut State University
Western Connecticut State University is also featured in our ranking of the Top 20 Online Applied Behavior Analysis Bachelor’s Degree and BCaBA Coursework Programs.
Applied behavior analysis (ABA) is an area of the social sciences that focuses on the ways in which people diagnosed with autism and related conditions interact with the environment and those around them. Western Connecticut State University offers both a graduate degree and a certificate in ABA. Both programs meet the standards designed by the Behavior Analyst Certification Board (BACB), which is the professional board that grants certificates to those who meet these standards and have ABA degrees.
The university’s certificate program includes just five classes and 19 credits of work. Applied Behavior Analysis I is the first class they take. All the courses that come later will use the same name but feature a different number at the end. Students who complete the certificate program will also need to do 1,500 hours of fieldwork to meet the minimum requirements for taking the BACB exam. Western Connecticut State University does not allow students to transfer any credits into the program and requires that students take just one class at a time. The knowledge they learn in each class will help them in their future courses.
Students in the university’s Master of Science (M.S.) in Applied Behavior Analysis will spend more than 300 hours in the classroom as they take credits of classes. While they will take the same five Applied Behavior Analysis courses as certificate students do, they will also take another nine credits of courses. Those credits include Grant Writing for Applied Behavior Analysis and Research in Applied Behavior Analysis Literature, which is a course that looks at some of the newest research into ABA therapy. Assistive Technology for Applied Behavior Analysis is another required course that focuses on the new forms of technology that professionals can use with their clients. To finish an M.S., students will also do a capstone project. Before taking the BACB exam, students will also need to do between 750 and 1,500 hours of fieldwork.
About Western Connecticut State University
Western Connecticut State University is a public university that started as a teachers college. Founded in 1903 as the Danbury Normal School in honor of the surrounding town, it served as the Danbury State Teachers College for more than two decades and then became Danbury State College. As its curriculum changed, the college became known for more than just its teaching programs, which eventually led to it becoming Western Connecticut State College and then Western Connecticut State University. Though most call the campus WCSU, it uses other names that include Western Connecticut State and WestConn.
The Jane Goodall Center for Excellence in Environmental Studies opened on the campus in 1995. Goodall herself came several times to lecture students on the importance of protecting and preserving the environment. This center is now a nonprofit organization that raises money for environmental causes. Students can attend lecture series at the center and see guest speakers talk in other buildings on the campus too. WCSU now has two campuses in Danbury and offers a shuttle that lets students get between the two.
Western Connecticut State University Accreditation Details
Both the degree and certificate program in ABA offered by WCSU meets the standards of the BACB, which lets students know that they will meet some of the requirements to get their professional licenses once they graduate. WCSU has accreditation for its education, nursing and music programs and also holds regional accreditation. The New England Association of Schools and Colleges (NEASC) awarded WCSU institutional accreditation and renewed that accreditation as needed over the years. This accreditation comes from that organization’s Commission on Institutions of Higher Education (CIHE).
Western Connecticut State University Application Requirements
The ABA degree program offered by WCSU charges a $50 application fee that students must pay before the university will process their applications. Students have until March first to submit their applications if they want to start in the fall and November first if they want to start in the spring. This gives the university time to go over the applications and the other information it requires. Students can only begin the degree program if they have a bachelor’s degree.
They will need to provide transcripts from their former schools that show the courses they took, the grades they earned and the degrees awarded to them. Students can apply before completing a bachelor’s degree but will need to show proof before starting classes that they finished their degrees. The program only accepts students with a grade point average of 2.8 or higher. Those who did not complete at least 12 credits of psychology and related courses will need to take classes at WCSU first. The university offers those classes each semester.
The certificate program has fewer requirements and is open to students who possess a bachelor’s degree or a graduate degree. Students need to submit the WCSU application and pay the $50 fee. They can then have their former schools send in their transcripts.
Tuition and Financial Aid
ABA students attending WCSU pay a $60 registration fee each semester when they sign up for classes. The university will always charge this fee, even if the student decides to drop classes or leave before the semester begins. They also pay $616 per credit hour for all their classes, which applies to both residents and nonresidents. Part-time and certificate students pay the same rate. There is also a $3 per credit hour student activity fee charged each semester. Full-time graduate students pay $6,379 per semester as a Connecticut resident and $12,773 per semester as a nonresident. Students who do not live in Connecticut but are residents of New England pay $7,809 per semester in the ABA program.
Through the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA), ABA majors at WCSU can qualify for financial aid. Certificate students generally do not receive financial aid because they take a limited number of classes, but both full-time and part-time students seeking their degrees can get financial aid. The FAFSA helps students meet the requirements for getting unsubsidized student loans, which come from the federal government. They can also qualify for a PLUS loan and veterans benefits that go to those who served in the military. Western Connecticut State University also offers a small number of scholarships and grants that go to students in its ABA program.