What are the Most Common Job Settings for a Behavior Analyst?

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A Behavior Analyst is a person who has extensive training in the principles of behavioral sciences and their application to psychology, education, business management, healthcare administration or law. Behavior analysts work with individuals and groups on issues related to understanding human behavior and development.

A criminal behavior analyst is a person who works with law enforcement to prevent, identify and solve crime. They work in many settings including schools, prisons, courts and other institutions. Read more in detail here: where do criminal behavior analysts work.

The finest jobs are those that provide choice and freedom. 

People who pursue careers in Applied Behavior Analysis can:

  • establish a new business
  • their own schedules
  • to work from, choose from a range of settings.

Although there are many various career settings that graduates with an applied behavior analysis master’s degree may find employment in, many people tend to identify Applied Behavior Analysis mainly with a classroom or clinical context. Such queries as “What is a behavior analyst and where do behavior analysts work” may come up.


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The Behavior Analyst Certification Board (BACB) states that behavior analysis specialists often work in:

  • healthcare
  • education
  • social contexts

That’s not all, however. Specialists in applied behavior analysis may also work in:

  • government 
  • businesses
  • home environment
  • a clinical setting

Applied behavior analysts may contribute their knowledge everywhere a behavior specialist is required. Applied behavior analyzers can change human behavior anywhere it needs to be changed, including:

  • in a school for autistic spectrum disorders with a youngster with autism
  • a company attempting to boost workplace productivity
  • young people in residential treatment for eating disorders

The answer to the question “Where do BCBAs work?” might be somewhat wide, however this article will mostly concentrate on the most typical work environments for applied behavior analysis professionals.

Applied behavior analysis: What is it?

Applied behavior analysis is a methodical, empirically based approach to:

  • evaluating
  • understanding
  • Adapting to new habits

This method is often used to those who have developmental delays, traumatic brain injuries, or autism spectrum disorder Although there are many demographics for whom applied behavior analysis methodologies may be taught and deployed. 

What is the role of a behavior analyst? Behaviorists assist their clients in forming constructive habits to:

  • overcome obstacles
  • alleviate tension
  • attain personal objectives
  • enhance their standard of living

An inability to: has been successfully addressed by applied behavior analysis.

  • social
  • language
  • practical abilities

Clients may also benefit from applied behavior analysis techniques for lowering violence, self-harming behaviors, and other unsuitable socially relevant behaviors.

Before beginning to engage with a client, a behavior health analyzer must first examine, appraise, and monitor the client in their natural settings. These settings might include:

Following that, information is gathered and a behavior intervention plan is created. Interventions to support the client’s success, develop more suitable behaviors, and gain important skills are offered to teachers, parents, and other engaged parties. Through the use of certain ABA treatments, the behavior analyst may impart new abilities to their clients. In order to help the process along, they also use penalties and reinforcement. Additionally, it is a process; behavior analysts have received extensive training in how to evaluate, track, and alter a variety of behaviors. 

In conclusion, careers in applied behavior analysis are desperately required! You must have a degree in applied behavior analysis and BACB certification. So where are BCBAs employed?

Psychiatric clinics

working at a Psychiatric clinics is a common job for an ABA therapistIndividuals with the Behavior Analyst (BCBA) certification in behavior analysis have the option of working in a clinical mentally sound environment. In a clinic, behavior analysts assist patients of all ages in resolving a range of issues, such as:

  • social
  • personal
  • mentally sound

For the purpose of creating beneficial management strategies and treatments, clinical behavior analyzers identify the unfavorable circumstances that support and contribute to unwanted conduct.

How can a behavioral analyst assist young people? Parents participate in intake exams with behavior analysts who deal with children and adolescents so they may create suitable behavioral plans based on best practices. To help families execute behavioral plans and methods at home and at school, a behavior analyst may collaborate with parents, teachers, and other care providers.  

What services do behavior analysts provide for adults? Adults who work with behavior analyzers tend to concentrate more on behavioral issues that obstruct professional and personal objectives. Working with a behavior analyst, adults with developmental impairments or behavioral issues can:

  • social abilities
  • everyday life abilities
  • talents in communication

An adult may operate more effectively at home and in society by honing these talents. 

Applied behavior analysts often belong to teams of licensed mentally sound care providers; however, they can also choose to open their own practice or business. 

Working in a mentally sound clinic can be a great choice for applied behavior analysts. It gives them the flexibility to work with different types of clients with a variety of needs. By going the mentally sound route, a Board Certified Behavior Analyst BCBA can start their own consulting business, which is what many behavior analysts strive for. 

mentally sound Centers

In contrast to a mentally sound clinic, where clients of all types can be seen in an outpatient setting, mentally sound centers typically focus on one type of disease or disorder. Examples of this are;

  • residences for eating disorders
  • centers for drug and alcohol addiction
  • places designed exclusively for people with autism

Many behavior analysts work for centers or programs that target specific conditions. What can you do as a behavior analyst working in a mentally sound center?  While behavior analysts are based out of a center, they are trained to implement one-on-one intervention programs with children in their:

  • homes
  • schools
  • social contexts

Maladaptive behaviors may be targeted by a Board Certified Behavior Analyst to promote the optimal development of social and academic abilities. This can include educating their patients on:

  • settling disputes
  • anger control
  • pro-social methods of communication

In order to better understand particular illnesses and behaviors, a behavior analyst is also in charge of gathering and evaluating patient data during the course of the day.

A behavior analyst may sometimes need to enter a client’s school and serve as a background support by coaching and managing instructors and parents.

This job setting is similar to one at a mentally sound clinic, except that a mentally sound center focuses on more specific types of disorders and does not broadly work with just anyone. Many mentally sound centers offer residential or full-day programs for their clients. Working in a center can be advantageous to behavior analysts who have expertise in a particular type of disorder or disease and want to focus on those. 

Schools, public

one common aba job is in Schools, publicMany applied behavior analysts work in Schools, public as ABA specialists. They work with students who struggle with behavior and emotional/social challenges. The work is done in a self-contained setting like an autism classroom or a resource classroom. Children who struggle in these areas typically are not in a general education class setting and thrive more in a small class size. 

Implementing educational programs for target clientele including people with behavioral problems and learning or developmental impairments is something an applied behavior analyst may do. They spend one to two hours each day meeting with a few student clients. Behavior analysts guide and instruct kids in appropriate skills like:

  • play
  • social
  • academic
  • communication 

An applied behavior analyst may sometimes be required to watch a specific student in a classroom for the whole of the day or for many days in order to collect data and create an FBA/BIP. 

Behavior analysts in Schools, public are in charge of recording student data and documenting how each student is progressing and responding to their specific program. They share their conclusions, recommendations, and narrative reports with:

  • educators
  • parents
  • manager of cases


To focus on certain skills, an applied behavior analyst may also decide to visit clients’ homes and accompany them around the neighborhood. 

A parent who has asked for behavior analysis services for their three-year-old autistic kid owing to behavioral and communication issues is an illustration of this. The behavior analyst sees the parent and child at home and conducts an observation in the setting where most improper behaviors are most likely to occur. Additionally, the analyst will stand to:

  • converse with the parent
  • learn more about actions performed away from home
  • to determine interventions, do an FBA.

This kind of analyst/client communication is also possible in public settings. In order to do jobs and run errands on a regular basis, the applied behavior analyst may accompany the parent and kid while also collecting observations and gathering data in the background. 

A Behavior Intervention Plan (BIP) may be made after the FBA is finished. Interventions and new skills to replace the improper behaviors will be openly taught to the parent and kid. To ascertain if the treatments are effective over time, additional observations will be made and more data will be collected. 

Teaching in the Natural Environment is the name of this line of activity (NET). 

Working with a client in their natural settings—at home and in the neighborhood—has clear advantages: 

  • less organized
  • more emphasis on the values of the kid and practical play
  • In the place where they will be employed, skills are taught
  • Sessions are extremely participatory.
  • less organized
  • more emphasis on the values of the kid and practical play.
  • In the place where they will be employed, skills are taught
  • Sessions are extremely participatory.

Learning in a natural environment speeds up skill acquisition and makes it simple for students to apply what they have learned in other contexts. 

Applied behavior analyzers may decide whether to go to clients’ residences based on their place of employment. Before accepting a job, this is a personal choice that should be taken into account. 

What are the Most Common Work Environments for a Behavior Analyst? Conclusion

Celebrate Students’ Differences 

With a master’s degree, applied behavior analyzers have several work prospects. They are fortunate in that they have more options for the customers they encounter and the environments in which they use their knowledge. Applied behavior analysis professionals who own their own companies and work on a contract basis have even more freedom and options. They may choose the settings that work best for their schedule and professional objectives, seeing however many clients at once. Work environments for Applied Behavior Analysts include:

  • Psychiatric clinics
  • centers
  • schools
  • natural settings

If they don’t align with your professional objectives, there are a ton more options available in fields like corporate behavior management and behavioral gerontology.  

Jennifer Cerny

Northeastern State University offers the Master of Education degree.

Disorders of Behavior and Learning | Georgia State University

amended in August 2021


Behavior analysts are typically employed in the public sector and work with children, adolescents, and adults. They might also be employed by private companies or school systems. Reference: is a behavior analyst a therapist.

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