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    The Chicago School of Professional Psychology
  Jan 26, 2021
2014-2015 Academic Catalog and Student Handbook with Addendum 
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2014-2015 Academic Catalog and Student Handbook with Addendum [Archived Catalog]

BCBA® Respecialization: A TCSPP Post-Master’s Certificate

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Online - Chicago

Program Overview

The BCBA® Respecialization: A TCSPP Post-Master’s certificate program develops mastery of applied behavior analysis principles. Applied Behavior Analysis is the ethical design, implementation, and evaluation of environmental changes to produce socially significant improvements in behavior. This program meets the academic coursework requirements to qualify to sit for the examination to become a Board Certified Behavior Analyst® (BCBA). The seven required courses comprise a BCBA course sequence that is approved by the Behavior Analyst Certification Board (BACB)®. 

Students are not required to complete their BCBA supervision with The Chicago School of Professional Psychology to receive the BCBA® Respecialization: A TCSPP Post-Master’s certificate; however, the Behavior Analyst Certification Board® requires the BCBA® Supervised Experience requirement to be completed prior to sitting for the BCBA® certification exam.

Learning Outcomes 

Upon completion of this certificate program students will be able to:

  1. evaluate and resolve ethical dilemmas in accordance with behavior-analytic and psychological ethical guidelines
  2. analyze behavior, design interventions, and evaluate interventions, by applying basic behavioral principles and assessment techniques to effect socially significant behavior change.
  3. conduct behavior-analytic research and evaluate behavior-analytic and other psychological research effectively and ethically.
  4. communicate effectively with clients, stakeholders, and other professionals.
  5. demonstrate sensitivity and competence while working with diverse populations.

Admissions Requirements

Applicants to the online BCBA® Respecialization: A TCSPP Post-Master’s certificate program must possess a master’s degree from a regionally accredited institution that was conferred in behavior analysis, education, or psychology.  Applicants must submit official transcripts from all schools where a degree was earned. It is recommended that transcripts are submitted from all schools where credit was received to enhance their applications. Applicants to this program should ensure their resume illustrates relevant work experience. A letter of reference, preferably from a supervisor or manager, is required. A practicum site approval form is also required from students seeking to complete Practicum supervision requirements through the program’s BACB® approved Practicum Experience.

In addition to the admission criteria, applicants into the online BCBA® Respecialization must also have access to a computer that is less than three years old, a broadband internet connection, and the Microsoft Office Suite including Word, Excel, and Outlook and, at minimum, the following computing skills:

  • A comfort with basic Internet technology
  • The ability to open and attach files from and to emails
  • The ability to send and receive email
  • The ability to save documents

TOEFL or IELTS, International Credentials, and International Students 

TOEFL or IELTS: If English is not your primary language, you must submit official TOEFL or IELTS scores with your application (TOEFL School Code: 7161). International students who received a bachelor’s degree from an accredited United States institution are exempt from this requirement. The minimum scores are: TOEFL - 550 paper based, 213 computer based, 79 internet based; IELTS - 6.5.

ELS Educational Services, Inc.: The Chicago School iof Professional Psychology is a cooperative member of ELS Educational Services, Inc. which provides intensive English language programs. Students who have successfully completed ELS course 112 may be considered for admission in lieu of the TOEFL or IELTS. 

International credentials: Applicants with international credentials must obtain and submit an official “course-by-course” evaluation through an evaluation agency such as World Education Services ( or Educational Credential Evaluators Inc ( In addition to the agency evaluation, all official graduate and undergraduate transcripts must be submitted. 

International students: International students must submit a completed application by the general consideration deadline. This will allow sufficient time to obtain the additional documentation required to study in the United States. In addition, once accepted, international students must submit the International Student Information form, a copy of their passport, and financial documentation showing sufficient funding for at least one year of study and all living expenses. This documentation must be submitted at least two months prior to the start of the semester in order to allow sufficient time for the school to issue an I-20 for the student to obtain an F-1 visa, if needed.. An I-20 visa will not be issued without this documentation.

Applicant Notification 

The Chicago School of Professional Psychology reviews applications on a rolling basis. Once review begins, complete applications will be considered by the Admission Committee and applicants will be notified regarding the admission decision. The Chicago School of Professional Psychology does not share information or provide any feedback regarding admission decisions. Students accepted into the BCBA Respecialization: A TCSPP Post-Master’s certificate program are required to submit the intent to enroll form, but not a tuition deposit.


The following policies are located under Academic Policies and Procedures : Transfer of Credit, Waiver of Courses, Satisfactory Academic Progress, Grading Scale, Grade Change Requests, Degree Completion, Degree Conferral, Minimum and Maximum Timeframe requirements, and Credit Hours per semester for Financial Aid.  Information on the Academic Success Program is located under Student Life .

Academic Development Plans 

An Academic Development Plan (ADP) is initiated and created by the program in which the student is enrolled. When a student demonstrates deficiencies in competencies that interfere with academic performance, training competence, and/or professional behavior, the ADP is initiated. The completion of an ADP does not constitute disciplinary action, but failure to complete the plan may lead to disciplinary action.

Student Learning Assessment 

The Chicago School of Professional Psychology (TCSPP) is committed to offering the highest quality undergraduate completion program and graduate programs in applied professional disciplines. To meet TCSPP’s standard for academic quality, program learning outcomes are aligned with course learning outcomes and guide assessment.   Data collected from the results of student assessment and the aggregation of these data will inform how students are progressing towards achieving program outcomes.  

All academic programs report annual assessments of student learning and other indicators of program effectiveness as part of the Academic Program Review process.


Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA) procedures and principles have made remarkable progress possible for many people. For instance, this progress takes the form of children learning to read, children with severe disabilities learning very basic life skills, increased communication between people, decreased symptoms of adults with brain injuries, and many other examples of reduced human misery and improved functioning and quality of life. Behavior-analytic principles and procedures now address many diagnoses andare applicable to virtually any behavior. Because all ABA work is validated with data about its effectiveness, each clinician generates a data set, and tests what he or she does. As clinicians review their outcomes, they modify and test procedures to get the maximum beneficial results for their clients. 

The reason for the existence of the ABA department is to make even greater progress for many more people by training students to understand and implement these behavior-analytic principles and procedures. This goal requires that the faculty measure students’ performance and ensure that students implement procedures correctly and ethically, and forward competent students to the next steps in the profession.

Ethics and Professional Behavior 

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 Analysis Certification Board during and after their work at The Chicago School of Professional Psychology. A class in ethics is required, and student adherence to ethical codes is evaluated both formally and informally.

Practicum Criteria 

Completing the BCBA® Supervised Practicum Experience required by the Behavior Analyst Certification Board® through TCSPP’s BACB® approved University Practicum option requires fewer field experience hours (1,000) than are required for the Supervised Independent Fieldwork option (1,500). BCBA® Respecialization students must complete a minimum of 10 hours per week and a maximum of 30 hours per week of a combination of documented work with clients plus supervision meetings (individual and group supervision) to meet the supervision requirements of the Behavior Analyst Certification Board.

Applicants in the Online and on-ground Chicago programs are encouraged to gain experience in multiple sites and with multiple supervisors. See for appropriate experience activities and for more information about practicum requirements.

Technical Requirements for Supervised Practicum Students

Students completing virtual supervision through The Chicago School of Professional Psychology will enroll in one of the following series of online courses: EBC 500, EBC 520, EBC 540, EBC 560. To successfully participate, students must have these technical capabilities:  

  • A computer made in the last three years
  • Broadband Internet connection
  • A webcam, digital camera, or digital recorder capable of:
    • Recording 24 frames per second (fps)
    • Recording for 60 consecutive minutes
    • Recording sound
    • Focusing appropriate to collect student-client interaction
  • A cable that connects the camera to the computer
  • Software that converts the raw footage to a smaller file - Windows MovieMaker (PC) or iMovie (Mac)

Online Practicum 

Students wishing to complete the Approved University Practicum option in the Online program must secure a practicum position at an approved site. They then have two options. If the student has a supervisor holding the BCBA® credential on-site, and that supervisor is willing to provide individual BCBA® supervision to the student, the student must obtain and document that individual supervision and must also enroll in one additional online course per term for five terms (Group Supervision). If the student does not have a supervisor on-site holding the BCBA® credential, the student must enroll in two additional online courses per term for five terms (both Group and Individual Supervision). Students must have completed AB520 and AB550, and must have either completed or be concurrently enrolled in AB547 in order to enroll in Supervision classes and, therefore, begin Practicum. Students must submit an application for site approval to the Department Chair who will review it with the BCBA® supervisor and advisor. An applicant may not start accumulating Supervised Experience hours until he or she has begun the coursework required to meet the BACB® coursework requirements. Sites must meet BACB® criteria for approved activities and hours (see All students must complete a minimum of 10 hours per week (hours in excess of 30 hours per week will not count toward the practicum requirement) of documented work with clients plus individual and group supervision to meet the requirements of the Behavior Analyst Certification Board®. 

On-ground Practicum 

Students in the on-ground program who wish to complete the Approved University Practicum option apply for a practicum position at an approved practicum site through the department’s Applied Professional Practice (APP) office, following procedures detailed in a Practicum Manual. Students complete four semesters (three 2-credit courses and one 1-credit course) of Practicum Seminar while accruing hours of Supervised Experience at their site. Similar to the requirement for the online students, at least 10 and no more than 30 hours are required per week; this includes work on-site, individual supervision meetings, and group supervision meetings (i.e., the Practicum Seminar class).    


The BCBA® Respecialization: A TCSPP Post-Master’s certificate program coursework is approved by the Behavior Analyst Certification Board® and meets the requirements necessary to take the Board Certified Behavior Analyst® (BCBA) exam. ABA curricula are periodically reevaluated by the BACB® and recertified. 

Full-Time vs. Part-Time 

Students entering the BCBA® Respecialization: A TCSPP Post-Master’s certificate program are considered part-time. In general, faculty plan for students to dedicate at least 10 hours per week to their studies. This respecialization program falls under the Executive and Professional Education division of The Chicago School of Professional Psychology, which emphasizes blending real-world experience with career enhancement course work. Students are therefore expected to be working in a relevant field and should consider carefully the balance between school, work, family, and other responsibilities and the rigors of specialized, online study.

The Curriculum

The Applied Behavior Analysis BCBA Respecialization requires 21 credits of core course work.  Students choosing to participate in The Chicago School of Professional Psychology approved supervised field experience will take 5 (group supervision only) or 10 (group and individual supervision) additional credits of supervised practicum work for a total of 26 or 31 semester credit hours.  Students will work with their assigned academic advisor to determine the best practicum option.

Required Core Courses:  21 credits

BCBA Supervised Practicum Options

Group Supervision: 5 credits

Group and Individual Supervision: 10 credits

Total Program Credits

BCBA Respecialization: 21 credits

BCBA Respecialization with Field Supervision (Group Only): 26 credits

BCBA Respecialization with Field Supervision (Group and Individual Supervision): 31 credits

Optional BCBA Supervised Practicum

Students wishing to participate in supervised field experience at an approved site declare their preference upon enrollment in the program and register for

 /  or  /   each term after successful completion of both   and  . Students must be concurrently enrolled in or have completed   to begin field work (practicum).  Depending on the availability of an on-side BCBA credentialed supervisor, students will enroll either in group supervision only, or group and individual supervision.

BCBA Supervised Practicum Options

Option A: 10 eight week terms (approximately 15 hours per week of supervised field work)

  • 5 Credits (Group Supervision) or 10 Credits (Group Supervision and Individual Supervision)

Option B:  5 eight week terms (approximately 30 hours per week of field supervised work)

  • 5 Credits (Group Supervision) or 10 Credits (Group Supervision and Individual Supervision)

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