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Applied Behaviour Analysis MSc/PGDip/PGCert


Course facts

  • Name: Applied Behaviour Analysis
  • Qualification: MSc/PGDip/PGCert
  • Duration: One full calendar year as a full time student or 2 years Full-time for those doing the practicum. Also available part-time.


This programme is aimed at those wishing to specialise in applied behaviour analysis. The course is designed to develop advanced theoretical and practical knowledge of the basic principles of behaviour analysis and the application of the principles within clinical and research settings.

The programme has been developed by Board Certified Behavior Analysts (BCBA) to meet the professional requirements of the Behavior Analyst Certification Board (BACB). If completed in full with no breaks or time away from study, the course covers the BACB Task List specifications and is recognised by the BACB as providing the content eligibility criteria necessary to sit the full BCBA exam. Students who complete 2 year MSc with practicum will also fulfil the applied work experience requirement and will be in a position to apply to sit the BACB exam when their degree is conferred. It is recommended that students visit the BACB website ( to become familiar with the professional requirements.

Students wishing to can exit the programme after achieving either a PG Certificate or PG Diploma if they don’t wish to undertake the full MSc. The full course leads to a Master’s degree, but it is designed to be flexible to meet the differing needs of our students. For example, you may choose to take a smaller number of modules for a Postgraduate Certificate or Diploma, or for Continuous Professional Development purposes. The course requires attendance at university on two full days per week as a full time student and one day as a part time student. 

Additional Course Costs:

Additional costs may also be charged as follows: Enhanced DBS check (approx. £65).


Is the course offered as distance-learning? The course is primarily neither distance learning or online learning. We have some distance sites, however these are professional settings who send their staff on the course. Under special circumstances, distance sites can accommodate some additional students, however this is by special arrangement with the Course Director.

When are the classes? Students are required to come to class Tuesdays 10 to 5pm (part-time first years), Mondays 10 to 5pm (second year part-timers) or both if full time, plus exams and welcome day. Please note that these times and days are subject to change.

Is a 'Practicum' option offered with this course? Unlike previous years we are NOT able to offer a practicum element to ABA students this year however we plan on reinstating that route starting in September 2021.

What is a ‘Practicum’? It involves completing 2000 hours of supervised work (c20 hrs per week unpaid) in a practicum setting arranged by the course, instead of a thesis. The setting is arranged by the university and supervision is provided by a Board Certified Behaviour Analyst and students cannot complete the practicum in a setting of their choosing. When available students who are enrolled on the MSc in Applied Behaviour Analysis apply in writing at the beginning of their course and the application process includes interviews and written statements. When the practicum is next available (2021/22 academic year) places will be limited and awarded on a competitive basis.

Student Profiles

To get a taste of what life as a postgraduate student in the School of Psychology is like, you may want to read the profiles of some of our current and past Postgraduate students.

Course content is for guidance purposes only and may be subject to change.

Course Content

The course consists of two parts. Part One comprises taught modules designed around the BACB Task List. The first four modules introduce the basic theory and practice of the science and the second four offer more detailed analysis of both applied and research procedures.

On successful completion of Part One, you will proceed to Part Two - a clinical research study, planned and conducted in collaboration with your BCBA-qualified research supervisor.

The Association for Behavior Analysis International has verified the following course toward the coursework requirements for eligibility to take the Board Certified Behavior Analyst® or Board Certified Assistant Behavior Analyst® examination.

Teaching, Learning and Assessment

Teaching is done through a combination of taught workshops, seminars, specialised computer-based instructional packages and practical ’hands-on’ research experience. We aim to provide a high quality teaching and learning environment that is intellectually stimulating and that uses the principles of behaviour analysis. This requires innovative course content and instructional procedures, measurement of learning, flexible communication among students and staff, and a friendly and supportive environment. Assessment methods include written examinations, oral presentations, case reports, essays, and a research thesis.

Modules for the current academic year

Module listings are for guide purposes only and are subject to change. Find out what our students are currently studying on the Applied Behaviour Analysis Modules page.

Entry Requirements

You should have a single or joint honours first degree in Psychology or a related field with at least a 2.2. Relevant work experience is welcomed and mature candidates with at least 3 years relevant experience who are not graduates may also gain entry to the diploma level of the course and will be considered on a case by case basis. Candidates may apply to have some coursework recognised from another institution, but preference will be given to candidates who wish to take all of their coursework at Bangor. We may ask candidates to interview for a place on the course.

International students will be given individual consideration, but you must be able to demonstrate English language proficiency equivalent to an IELTS score of 6.0 (with no element below 5.5) and you will be expected to demonstrate that you have a suitable academic background for the programme.

International Students

For information and further detailed guidance on entry requirements for International Students, including the minimum English Language entry requirement, please visit the Entry Requirements by Country pages on the International Education Centre section of our website.

Ask the IEC for assistance...

If you want advice or a general chat about what’s available contact the International Education Centre on +44 (0) 1248 382028 or email


Admissions to the programme are made on a rolling basis, so early applications are encouraged. Applications are made directly through the Postgraduate Office of Bangor University to the School of Psychology. To learn more about the application process please click here.

Need help applying?

If you have any questions about entry requirements, how to apply or the course you are interested in please do not hesitate to contact Bethan Pentith, Postgraduate Admissions Officer on +44 (0)1248 388453 or by emailing We look forward to hearing from you.

How to Apply

Home/EU students

Home/EU students: apply online yourself with the help of our Guidance Notes on online application for Home/EU students. We strongly recommend you read these before you start to apply online.

Apply online

Once you have read the Guidance Notes you should apply using our Online Application form.

Need help applying? Home/EU students please contact:

Postgraduate Admissions: or write to:

Admissions Office
Bangor University
LL57 2TF

Telephone: +44 (0)1248 383717.

International students

  • Agents: if you are an agent applying on behalf of the student, then you can Apply here. For further guidance click here

Need help applying? International students please contact:

International Education Office: or write to

International Education Centre
Bangor University
LL57 2DG

Telephone: +44 (0) 1248 382028

When to apply

The University will accept applications throughout the year, but we would generally advise that you send in your application form by the end of June to ensure that you have time to make any funding and/or accommodation arrangements, and for documents such as transcripts and references to be obtained if not submitted with the application. This will also give you more time to meet any conditions we may potentially attach to an offer. If you are making an application for one of our professional courses, which has limited place availability, you are advised to contact the academic school for advice on the final dates for applications.

Careers and Employability

This BCAB recognised MSc is a highly relevant qualification for those interested in pursuing a career with special educational or developmental needs in a wide range of settings.

Research/Industrial Links

The course director, Dr Sharp, is an elected Advisor for the Cambridge Centre for Behavioral Studies, an international organisation devoted to the dissemination and promotion of the uses of behavioural psychology. Dr Sharp is organiser of the Experimental Analysis of Behaviour Group, UK and Europe (EABG); the longest standing organisation devoted to behaviour analysis in Europe and is a founder member of the European Association of Behaviour Analysis and of the UK Society for Behaviour Analysis. He is also on the advisory board of the UK Autism Education Competency framework.  He has developed a number of strong relationships with outside organisations, charities and authorities, such as Ambitious about Autism, The Sharland Foundation, local education authorities in North Wales, and Northumberland Tyne and Wear Foundation NHS Trust.


There are school funded achievement scholarships for first class students, international scholarships and information on other funding sources on our scholarships School page.

Further information

Contact us

Course Director: Dr Rebecca Sharp

If you have any questions about this programme then please do not hesitate to contact us and we will be happy to help you.


Tel: 01248 388453

Why Study at the School of Psychology?

Have a look at this page for reasons to study for a postgraduate degree at Bangor University's School of Psychology.

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