The College of Education & Human Development has been bestowed with an impressive grant of $1.1 million by the U.S. Department of Education, Office of Special Education Programs (OSEP) for a span of five years. This significant fund aims to enrich education and training programs for applied behavior analysts (ABAs) in special education school settings. This revolutionary venture, known as Project BASE:

Bridging Behavior Analysts in Special Education, is being spearheaded by esteemed faculty members Project Director and Principal Investigator MaryAnn Demchak, Ph.D., BCBA-D, LBA and Co-Investigator Chevonne Sutter, Ph.D., BCBA-D, LBA.

Aim of the five-year-long Project BASE

The aim of the five-year-long Project BASE is to train and equip 22 scholars who will play a pivotal role in enhancing the field of applied behavior analysis in special education within the state. The program will be split into two cohorts, with each cohort undergoing a comprehensive master’s degree curriculum spanning 2.5 years. The initial group consists of a total of 10 distinguished scholars in the field of ABA ( applied behavioral analysis), while the subsequent cohort is expected to have an even larger size of 12 ABA scholars.

The Master of Education in Special Education program offered by the University has a specialized focus which has been officially recognized by the Association for Behavior Analysis International as meeting the necessary course criteria for being eligible to sit for the Board Certified Behavior Analyst® (Option 1) certification exam.

Additional prerequisites for completing this program

Prospective candidates must fulfill additional prerequisites to be considered qualified to take the examination. The additional prerequisites for completing this program are supervised fieldwork hours.   To ensure exceptional exposure to specialized education in school-based contexts, Project BASE will offer essential supervision for attaining fieldwork hours. The aim is to adequately equip ABA scholars with the skills and knowledge required for school-based roles and make them eligible to apply for the national exam.

Prevailing Misconception

An extensive amount of proof exists to support the significance and applicability of applied behavior analysis in educating students with disabilities (Demchak et al., 2020). Unfortunately, a prevailing misconception persists that associates behavior analysis solely with individuals diagnosed with autism; this misbelief undermines the recognition of behavior analysis as a scientific discipline and an approach that can benefit all students with disabilities, not just autism (Demchak et al., 2020).

There are diverse applications of behavior analysis and its potential to positively impact students with disabilities beyond just those with autism.

Nevada Autism Center

As advocacy and support for individuals with disabilities continue to grow, Nevada Autism Center is at the forefront of providing high-quality ABA therapy to children with autism and other developmental disorders. Through its commitment to furthering education and training for behavior analysts, Nevada Autism plays a crucial role in promoting the use of evidence-based practices in schools and ensuring that all students receive support.

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