Program Guidebook. Ph.D. Applied Behavior Analysis (Post-Master s)

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1 Program Guidebook Ph.D. Applied Behavior Analysis (Post-Master s) NOTE: 1) This guidebook is subject to change. If it does, students will be notified via and will be provided with the revised version. 2) Policies and program information are located in the Student Handbook and Academic Catalog, to access click on the URL: 1

2 Table of Contents Program Overview... 3 Program Learning Outcomes... 3 Statement of Ethical Guidelines... 3 Advising... 3 Independent Study... 4 Performance Feedback... 4 Comprehensive Examination... 4 Dissertation... 5 Requirements to Apply... 5 Requirements for Completion... 5 Campus Specific Information

3 Program Overview The Chicago School Model of Education focuses on the Engaged Professional. In behavior analysis, the engaged professional is one who is strong in the philosophy, science, and application of behavior analysis. The Chicago School of Professional Psychology s Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA) Department strives to become the School of Choice in ABA by training applied behavior analysts who practice state of the art ABA and who are strong in the science and philosophy of behavior analysis. The Ph.D. Applied Behavior Analysis program is a 5 year program that includes the M.S. Applied Behavior Analysis requirements as prerequisites for the 3 year post MS requirements. This Guidebook applies to the post MS requirements; see M.S. Applied Behavior Analysis Program Guidebook for information on coursework, practicum, and other requirements at the MS level. Program Learning Outcomes Apply behavior-analytic principles to an understanding of diversity and will evaluate diversity from a selectionist/radical-behaviorist approach. Evaluate ethical behavior and to arrange contingencies to establish and maintain ethical behavior in their individual work and at a systems level. Communicate effectively with clients, stakeholders, and other professionals; present research and other information to the professional community and the general public; and lead advocacy efforts for clients, agencies, and groups. Develop and apply advanced assessment and intervention techniques. Evaluate systems and train others to design and conduct behavior-analytic interventions and research. Conduct original behavior-analytic research and to synthesize and evaluate behavioranalytic and other psychological research. Analyze complex behavior, interactions, and systems through a radical-behaviorist framework, and design interlocking contingencies to address complex cultural issues. Statement of Ethical Guidelines Students are expected to learn and to follow the ethical guidelines of the American Psychological Association, the Association for Behavior Analysis International, and the Behavior Analyst Certification Board during and after their work at The Chicago School. A class in ethics is required at the Masters level, and student adherence to ethical codes is evaluated both formally and informally. Advising ABA students have a faculty member that serves as their academic advisor at all times. It is strongly recommended that students meet with their advisor prior to registration for each semester/term to discuss progress and plan for the future. This is also an important 3

4 time to discuss concerns or possible need to deviate from the recommended course sequence. Independent Study Independent study (i.e., special topics classes with one or a few students) can be arranged with specific faculty members in order to obtain experience and/or knowledge in a particular subject area that is not addressed in other classes during the student s course of study. See your advisor, department chair, or other faculty members for more information Performance Feedback Grades are assigned in all courses, and students may review course grades online. The ABA Faculty strives to provide rapid and detailed feedback on assignments that clearly indicates satisfactory performance and performance that needs work. The Department of ABA strongly recommends that students monitor their grades continuously throughout each semester and meet with their instructors if they are not progressing satisfactorily in their classes. Students should also meet regularly with their advisors to keep them updated on and seek help for academic or other issues that may impede progress in the program. Comprehensive Examination The Ph.D. Applied Behavior Analysis degree requires students to pass a written and oral comprehensive examination. Subject matter and course material from any and all classes in the Ph.D. program (including MS classes) may be included on the comprehensive exam. Students need to have completed their master s degree and thesis defense prior to taking the Comprehensive Exam preparation courses (i.e., PA730, PA731, PA732, and PA733). Four Comprehensive Examination courses are included in the coursework requirements and are designed to help students prepare for the exams. After successful completion of the four Comprehensive Examination courses, students take the written exam, and if they pass that, they proceed to an oral defense in which they defend their answers in front of a committee that includes at least three faculty members. The entire ABA faculty is invited to attend the oral defense and may participate in the grading of the written and oral exams. If the student fails the written exam, they will be placed on an Academic Development Plan (ADP) and must take another exam (both written and oral components) later in the program. Two attempts are allowed on the written examination and oral defense (three attempts may be allowed under extenuating circumstances and with approval by the Department Chair); if a student fails one of these components twice (or three times, if allowed), a referral is made to the Student Affairs Committee (SAC) for disciplinary action, which can result in dismissal from the program. Specific information related to the comprehensive exam process can be found in the Comprehensive Examination Manual. Once the written exam and oral defense are completed successfully, the student is considered a Doctoral Candidate and is allowed to complete the Dissertation process. 4

5 Dissertation Description Ph.D. Applied Behavior Analysis students complete an empirical, behavior analytic dissertation that marks an original contribution to the body of knowledge in ABA, including complete and comprehensive literature review, dissertation proposal, PowerPoint presentation of the dissertation proposal at a proposal defense, Institutional Review Board (IRB) application, data collection, write-up with figures, PowerPoint presentation of the dissertation at dissertation defense, revision of the dissertation document if necessary, and copy editing. The Dissertation Chair serves as the primary reader and must approve all drafts of the dissertation proposal and dissertation document before the other reviewers and the National Center for Academic and Dissertation Excellence (NCADE) receive it. At least three readers (i.e., chair and two second readers) are required. One of the second readers should be from outside the core faculty of that campus (e.g., faculty from another campus or department, expert from outside TCSPP). The dissertation readers typically suggest revisions and may request to see those revisions before the dissertation or proposal goes to the next step. See ABA Dissertation Manual for more information. Dissertation classes are included in the PhD ABA coursework requirements: one 3 credit Proposal Development Seminar followed by a series of 2 credit Dissertation Development courses. Students must be enrolled in Proposal Development, Dissertation Development, or Dissertation Maintenance while working on their dissertation. The dissertation must be empirical research that makes an original contribution to the scientific knowledge base of Behavior Analysis. The ABA Department recommends that PhD students start thinking about potential topics as soon as they start the program to facilitate timely completion of the dissertation process. Requirements to Apply The student may propose the dissertation after having successfully completed the comprehensive examinations. Requirements for Completion The dissertation process requires a final document to be approved by all committee members and an oral defense that is deemed acceptable by the committee. The final document must go through the copy-editing process before the dissertation process is complete. Campus Specific Information Online The PhD in ABA Online program requires three residencies, one per year, held at a Chicago School Campus. Each residency will be three days in length. 5

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