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Bachelor of Arts and Bachelor of General Studies in Applied Behavioral Science

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Requirements for the B.A. or B.G.S. Major

All majors must complete the introductory and core course work as well choose from 1 of the following specialty area options.

Applied Behavioral Sciences Introductory Knowledge
Applied Behavioral Sciences Introductory Knowledge

Introduction to Applied Behavioral Science
Satisfied by ABSC 100 or ABSC 101

Applied Behavioral Sciences Core Knowledge and Skills
Majors must complete a course in each of the following areas:
Principles and Procedures of Behavior Modification and Therapy. Satisfied by ABSC 304
Research Methods and Application. Satisfied by ABSC 308
Contemporary Behavioral Science: Historical, Conceptual & Comparitive Foundation. Satisfied by ABSC 509

Early Childhood Education & Intervention Specialty

This option is for students interested in understanding typical and atypical child development and learning to promote healthy development in young children (ages 0-6 years). Students who choose this option are required to participate in parctica in classrooms that serve toddlers and preschool children. Faculty: Professors Claudia Dozier (practicum supervisor), Pam Neidert (practicum supervisor), Lynn Marotz, and Jan Sheldon.

Required Specialty Area Core Knowledge and Skills
Satisfied by ABSC 160 and ABSC 444 (Students may substitute PYSC 333 Child Psychology for ABSC 160. The credit hours for PYSC 333, however, do not count toward the 33 required ABSC major hours or toward the 15 required junior/senior ABSC hours.)

Specialty Area Electives
Satisfied by completing 8 hours of any junior/senior-level courses approved by the adviser. The following are recommended: ABSC 350, ABSC 405, ABSC 455, ABSC 486, ABSC 535, or ABSC 565.

Practicum 1
Satisfied by ABSC 675 or ABSC 677. Two semesters or practicum courses are required with a total of 6-10 hours. The courses are offered for 5 credit hours during the fall and spring semesters, and 3 hours during the summer session. No more than 6 hours of practicum apply to the major.

Practicum 2
Satisfied by choosing one from the following: ABSC 675, ABSC 676, ABSC 677, or ABSC 678.

3 Semesters of Practicum Courses — BCABA Certification Examination Eligibility. Satisfied by choosing 1 from the following list: ABSC 675, ABSC 676, ABSC 677, or ABSC 678. By completing a third semester of ABSC practicum courses, a student is eligible to sit for BCABA Certification Examination.

Early Childhood Autism Intervention Specialty

This option is for students interested in conducting intervention procedures to address language and social skill deficits of children with autism in home and school settings. Students who choose this option are required to take a preparatory course and practica focusing on children with autism. Faculty: Professors Claudia Dozier (practicum supervisor), Pam Neidert (practicum supervisor), Florence D. DiGennaro Reed, Jan Sheldon, Jim Sherman (practicum supervisor).

Required Specialty Area Core Knowledge and Skills
Satisfied by ABSC 160, ABSC 350, and ABSC 444 (Students may substitute PYSC 333 Child Psychology for ABSC 160. The credit hours for PYSC 333, however, do not count toward the 33 required ABSC major hours or toward the 15 required junior/senior ABSC hours.)

Specialty Area Electives
Satisfied by completing 5 hours of any junior/senior-level courses approved by the adviser. The following are recommended: ABSC 405, ABSC 455, ABSC 486, ABSC 535, or ABSC 565.

Practicum 1
Satisfied by 1 semster of ABSC 680. The courses are offered for 5 credit hours during the fall and spring semesters, and 3 hours during the summer session. No more than 6 hours of practicum apply to the major.

Practicum 2
Satisfied by ABSC 680.

BCABA Certification Examination Eligibilty. By completing a third semester of ABSC practicum courses, a student is eligible to sit for BCABA Certification Examination. Satisfied by choosing 1 of the following: ABSC 675, ABSC 676, ABSC 677, ABSC 678, or ABSC 680.

ABSC Early Childhood Research Specialty

This option is for students interested in gaining research experience in early childhood possibly as preparation for graduate school or employment in educational and clinical research centers. Students who choose this option will enroll in research-oriented practica. Interested students would consult with Professor Claudia Dozier. Faculty: Professors Claudia Dozier (practicum supervisor), Pam Neidert (practicum supervisor).

Required Specialty Area Core Knowledge and Skills
Satisfied by ABSC 160 (Students may substitute PYSC 333 Child Psychology for ABSC 160. The credit hours for PYSC 333, however, do not count toward the 33 required ABSC major hours or toward the 15 required junior/senior ABSC hours.)

Specialty Area Electives
Satisfied by completing 11 hours of any junior/senior-level courses approved by the adviser. The following are recommended: ABSC 350, ABSC 444, ABSC 405, ABSC 455, ABSC 486, ABSC 535, ABSC 565, ABSC 786, or ABSC 871.

Practicum 1
Satisfied by ABSC 679. The courses are offered for 3-5 credit hours during the fall and spring semesters, and 3 hours during the summer session. No more than 6 hours of practicum apply to the major.

Practicum 2
Satisfied by ABSC 679.

3 Semesters of Practicum Courses — BCABA Certification Examination Eligibility. Satisfied by choosing 1 from the following list: ABSC 675, ABSC 676, ABSC 677, or ABSC 678. By completing a third semester of ABSC practicum courses, a student is eligible to sit for BCABA Certification Examination.

Youth Development & Juvenile Justice Specialty

This specialty area is for students who want to work with children and adolescents who may be involved formally or informally with the juvenile justice system. It includes courses addressing issues such as juvenile law, developing relationships, counseling and problem-solving, behavioral contracting, and other techniques used when working with school-aged children and adolescents. The course sequence culminates in a yearlong practicum during which students work with children and adolescents in the Truancy Prevention and Diversion Program. The practicum is in collaboration with the school district, Social and Rehabilitation Services, the district attorney's office, and the juvenile court.

Graduates with this specialty are excellent candidates for positions as probation officers, counselors in mental health programs, intake and assessment officers, truancy prevention specialists, and treatment personnel in intervention and treatment programs for children and adolescents. Many students also pursue graduate study in social welfare, law, counseling, and psychology. Faculty: Professors Yo Jackson, Jan Sheldon (practicum supervisor), Ric Steele, and Eric Vernberg.

Required Specialty Area Core Courses
Satisfied by ABSC 410 and ABSC 560. Students should plan their program with a department adviser. ABSC 410 must be taken prior to enrolling in the practicum. It is offered only in the spring semester.

Specialty Area Electives
Satisfied by completing 5 hours of any junior/senior-level courses approved by the adviser. The following are recommended: ABSC 405, ABSC 455, ABSC 486, ABSC 535, or ABSC 565.

Practicum 
Satisfied by ABSC 680 (6-10 hours). Two semesters are required. The courses are offered for 5 credit hours during the fall and spring semesters, and 3 hours during the summer session. No more than 6 hours of practicum apply to the major.

Applied Behavioral Science Adults with Disabilities Specialty

This specialty area is for students interested in working with people with developmental disabilities and in the development of supportive teaching programs in the community for people with developmental disabilities. The courses teach observing and defining behavior, increasing appropriate and decreasing inappropriate behavior, developing relationships, counseling, legal and ethical issues, and experimental design. The course sequence culminates in practicum work in a community-based residential service agency or day treatment program for adults with developmental disabilities.

Graduates of this specialty are excellent candidates for positions in residential treatment programs, community human service agencies, and vocational and pre-vocational teaching programs for people with disabilities. Many students also pursue graduate studies in applied behavioral analysis, special education, and psychology. Faculty: Professors Jan Sheldon and Jim Sherman (practicum supervisor).

Required Specialty Area Course
Satisfied by ABSC 350.

Specialty Area Electives
Satisfied by completing 11 hours of any junior/senior-level courses to meet the 33 hour major requirement. The following are recommended: ABSC 410, ABSC 437, ABSC 535, ABSC 560, ABSC 565, or ABSC 671.

Practicum 
Satisfied by ABSC 685. ABSC 304 and ABSC 350 must be taken prior to enrolling in the practicum. However, no more than 6 hours of practicum apply to the major.

Community Health & Development Specialty

This specialty area is for students interested in building healthy and well-functioning communities. They may do so through public service (e.g., AmeriCorps, Peace Corps) or in a career following graduate study in an appropriate field such as public health, public policy, law, rehabilitation, psychology, social welfare, or medicine. It provides opportunities to better understand and make a difference with important community problems and goals (e.g., substance abuse, violence, education, child and youth development, independent living of people with disabilities, well-being of older adults).

Course work and practicum experiences focus on (a) intervention methods used to address community problems and goals (e.g., strategic planning, intervention, advocacy) and (b) research methods used to study the effects of community initiatives for health and development (e.g., community assessment, evaluation). The course sequence culminates in a 2-semester practicum arranged with faculty members and representatives of community organizations or governmental agencies (e.g., in public health, child advocacy, independent living, youth development, community development). Faculty: Professors Jomella Watson-Thompson (practicum supervisor), Stephen Fawcett (practicum supervisor), and Glen White (practicum supervisor).

Required Specialty Area Course
Satisfied by ABSC 150 or ABSC 151 and ABSC 310 or ABSC 311.

Specialty Area Electives
Satisfied by completing 8 hours of any junior/senior-level courses that are related to the student's interests and approved by the adviser. The following are recommended: ABSC 410, ABSC 437, ABSC 455, ABSC 486, ABSC 535, ABSC 565, ABSC 626, or ABSC 671.

Practicum 
Satisfied by ABSC 690 or ABSC 691 — 6 hours (3 hours in both fall and spring semesters). ABSC 310/ABSC 311 is a prerequisite for the practicum, either previously taken or enrolled in concurrently.

Basic Research

Students pursuing the basic research option learn about behavioral processes and research methods, and acquire skills in the experimental analysis of behavior. Students completing this option complete a 2-semester hands-on practicum in which they assist in the conduct of research on human or nonhuman behavioral processes. Students are involved in all aspects of the research endeavor, from conceptualization of problems to data collection, analysis, and presentation. Students pursuing this option are required to complete an introductory course in statistics. Faculty: Professors Derek Reed (practicum supervisor), Florence D. DiGennaro Reed (practicum supervisor), and Edward K. Morris (practicum supervisor).

Specialty Area Electives
Satisfied by completing 12 hours of any junior/senior-level ABS courses approved the practicum adviser. The following are among the recommended courses: ABSC 425, ABSC 565, ABSC 535, ABSC 632, ABSC 671, ABSC 735, or ABSC 796.

Statistics in Psychological Research
Satisfied by PSYC 210 or PSYC 211

Practicum
Satisfied by ABSC 692 (6-10 hrs). Practicum courses are offered for 3-6 credit hours during the fall and spring semesters, and 3 hours during the summer session. However, no more than 6 hours total apply to the major.

Conceptual Foundations

Students pursuing the conceptual foundations option learn about contemporary conceptual issues in behavior analysis, its history and philosophy, and its relations with the behavioral, social, and cognitive sciences in general. As a result, they acquire skills in critical thinking about behavior and the behavior of scientists. Students who complete this option complete a 2-semester practicum in which they read and research a relevant literature and write a paper that advances their understanding of the field. Faculty: Professors Derek Reed (practicum supervisor), Florence D. DiGennaro Reed (practicum supervisor), and Edward K. Morris (practicum supervisor).

Specialty Area Electives
Satisfied by completing 14 hours of any junior/senior-level ABSC courses approved by the practicum adviser. The following are among the recommended courses: ABSC 565, ABSC 535, ABSC 632, ABSC 671, ABSC 796, or ABSC 798.

Practicum
Satisfied by ABSC 693 (6-10 hrs). Practicum courses are offered for 3-6 credit hours during the fall and spring semesters, and 3 hours during the summer session. No more than 6 hours total apply to the major.

Applied Behavioral Science Major Hours & Major GPA

While completing all required courses, majors must also meet each of the following hour and grade point average minimum standards:

Major Hours
Satisfied by 33 hours of major courses.

Major Hours in Residence
Satisfied by a minimum of 15 hours of KU resident credit in the major. 

Major Junior/Senior (300+) Hours
Satisfied by a minimum of 12 hours from junior/senior courses (300+) in the major.

Major Junior/Senior (300+) Graduation GPA
Satisfied by a minimum of a 2.0 KU GPA in junior/senior courses (300+) in the major. GPA calculations include all junior/senior courses in the field of study including F’s and repeated courses. See the Semester/Cumulative GPA Calculator.

Study Abroad

The department offers students opportunities to obtain international experience in a program offered jointly with the Office of Study Abroad (ABSC 279ABSC 479) and research experience with faculty members who teach research courses or a research practicum (ABSC 499ABSC 599ABSC 679ABSC 692ABSC 693ABSC 698ABSC 699). Research experience is recommended for students planning to attend graduate school. The department also offers some courses that include a service-learning component. Many of these programs, research experiences, and service-learning courses meet university requirements in these areas.

Graduation Plan

With careful planning and commitment to a full-time course load, you can graduate in 4 years. Download a sample 4-year plan for applied behavioral science.

Double Majors

The department encourages double majors and minors in other departments. Double majors are especially appropriate for students planning to attend graduate school or enter professional programs (e.g., psychology, law, medicine). Any of the College’s other majors may be appropriate, but among the more common are psychology, human biology, sociology, political science, and speech-language-hearing.

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