How to get RBT Certified?

By: Shruthi Rajalakshmi 

Getting an RBT (Registered Behavior Technician) Certification is the first official step into the field of ABA (Applied Behavior Analysis). ABA, in simple words, is the application of the principles of learning theory, to bring about meaningful and socially significant changes in behavior.

As an RBT, you will be working directly with individuals, mostly children, and implementing treatment procedures designed by your supervisor. It is important to know that your RBT Certification will always be tied to a BCBA Supervisor, who will be your Responsible Certificant.

This article will mention “the Board” multiple times. It refers to the Behavior Analysis Certification Board (BACB).


How do I go about getting RBT Certified?

The Behavior Analysis Certification Board (BACB) specifies a minimum age, minimum education, RBT training and competency assessment for anyone who wishes to apply for RBT Certification.

  • Age: Must be at least 18
  • Education: High school or equivalent/higher
  • Training: If you qualify by age and education, the next step is go through training. There are several online and onsite RBT training programs offered by Universities and private agencies. The standard duration of training is 40 hours and covers all material specified in a “Task list” by the Board. Candidates are expected to take no longer than 180 days to complete it. Before you enroll, do make sure the course sequence is approved by the Board.
  • Competency assessment: Once the training has been completed, you will find a Board Certified Behavior Analyst (BCBA) to evaluate your skills, either on job or in person through role play. The Board requires a BCBA to attest that you have the required skills to be a Behavior Technician.

If you already have a job as a Behavior Therapist/Technician/Interventionist, your company will most likely have a BCBA who will conduct the competency assessment for you. If you are not yet working in the as a BT/BI, you may find a BCBA through the Board’s website. The BCBA will be your Responsible Certificant, meaning, he or she will be responsible to provide the required hours of supervision every month.

Once you have Certificate of completion of the approved RBT coursework and a Competency assessment report from the BCBA, you can apply for the Certification.


How do I apply?

You will first need to create an account through the BACB website, a very simple procedure. Once that is done, you will be directed to upload scans of your Certificate and the Assessment report along with a scan of your highest degree and details about your BCBA supervisor.

Simply follow the instructions in the website.

Once that is done, the Board will contact you via email notifying you of the approval, and provide you with clear instructions about how to book your exam dates and other details about the exam – rules, procedures, what to bring, duration of the exam, number of questions etc.

In the process, if there is any concern regarding your BACB account or your application, you can call the Board for immediate help. You could also use their Contact Us tab. They usually respond with help within 24 hours.

Take advantage of ! And good luck with the process of getting RBT Certified!