Psychology Behavioral Analysis Ph.D. Assessment Plan

Mission Statement

We seek to train doctoral level Behavior Analysts who have a thorough grounding in research and scholarly activities, can develop and utilize scientific knowledge, are skilled in using their critical thinking and analytic tools in problem formulation and solution generation, and have a thoroughly developed repertoire of professional competencies, including research, teaching, and applied skills.

The program emphasizes creative research and applications of psychological principles to a broad range of applied problems. The program's faculty and students , make significant contributions in the areas of research methodology, treatment development, outcomes research, program development, program evaluation, training, supervision, technology transfer, basic behavioral research, and philosophy of science. The program values these behaviors, regardless of the setting in which they occur.

Student Learning Outcomes

1. Students will be able to demonstrate knowledge of the theoretical, basic and applied areas of Behavior Analysis and research that form the foundation of Behavioral Psychology as it relates to behavior acquisition and change.

Student Performance Indicators
  • Attendance and active participation in weekly research meetings
  • Completion of core research methods courses, statistics sequence, core Theoretical, basic and applied courses, and elective courses
  • Comprehensive knowledge is demonstrated in one or the other of the following outcomes: a) one doctoral paper; or b) one doctoral paper or one grant proposal.
Assessment Method
  • Behavior Analysis Training Committee (BATC) yearly review of student academic progress with feedback to student provided by Advisor and Director
  • Successful completion of coursework at level prescribed by graduate school as assessed by evaluation of exam and classroom performance. Student competency measures of academic milestones, scholarly production, and professional development as indicated in annual student evaluation by the BATC with feedback to student
  • A 5 member faculty committee approves the peer reviewed publications and grant proposals

2. Students will be able to skillfully and ethically apply current scientific principles of behavior change or the development of new behavior change strategies.

Student Performance Indicators
  • Knowledge of ethical standards of the field
  • Oral presentations
  • Students will demonstrate knowledge of and sensitivity to individual and cultural diversity
Assessment Method
  • Successful completion of ethics course and program core course requirements. Attendance and supervision by core faculty in clinical or organizational practicum course series. Supervisors' review of proper outcome assessment and intervention procedures
  • Evaluated by number and quality of publications and presentations in case conferences, national or regional conferences, and workshops.
  • Coursework in clinical assessment and intervention with adults and children, diversity (including gender, ethnicity and physical disabilities); demonstration of knowledge of these issues in clinical, educational, and other organizational settings as evaluated by faculty site supervisors

3. Students will be able to develop and demonstrate an understanding of the principles and practice of ethical scientific research.

Student Performance Indicators
  • Knowledge of research ethics
  • Knowledge of research design and statistics
Assessment Method
  • Successful completion of research methodology courses as evaluated by classroom examinations and performance; successful completion of IRB mandated ethics course as well as our own separate ethics course
  • Successful completion of program methodology and statistic requirements as evaluated by classroom examinations and performance
  • Successful submission, approval and completion of an IRB protocol
  • Graded evaluation of students' performance in four consecutive semesters of practicum course.

4. Students will be able to establish independence and demonstrate capacity for scientific creativity.

Student Performance Indicators
  • Successful dissertation proposal
  • Career employment
  • Successful completion of Masters or pre-doctoral research project
  • Successful dissertation defense
Assessment Method
  • Evaluation by examining committee
  • Alumni survey of satisfaction with employment for 3 years following graduation
  • Evaluation by committee
  • Evaluation by examining committee