Did you know the global behavioral therapy market could reach $347300 million by 2025? There is a great need for behavior therapists. 

Are you wondering how to become a behavioral therapist? Not to worry! In this guide, we’ll go over what degrees, licenses, and skills you’ll need.

Want to learn more? Keep reading to find out!

A Guide to Becoming a Behavioral Therapist

Behavioral therapists, also known as behaviorists, work with patients with behavior problems. They focus on maladaptive behavior and what caused it in patients. Then they help clients learn more appropriate and new behaviors.

Behavioral therapists work with patients one on one. Therapists will track what the patient is working on and how they’re responding.

What Education Do I Need?

There are three levels of behaviorists, and they all need a university education. A Board Certified Behavior Analyst needs a master’s degree. A Board Certified Assistant Behavior Analyst needs a bachelor’s degree.

A typical undergraduate degree will consist of a variety of subjects. Upper division courses will include clinical psychology, developmental and abnormal psychology.

Check university catalogs to see what schools offer courses in behavioral psychology.

Master’s programs help students get ready for supervisory roles in behavioral science. Students learn the practical and theoretical parts of behavioral psychology.

If students like research, they could write a thesis. Practicums allow students to have supervised interaction with patients. Ph.D. programs do exist, for those who want to focus on research or teach behavioral therapy.

When you have your degree, apply here for exciting careers.

What License Do I Need?

You’ll need state licensure to practice as a therapist in a jurisdiction. State boards of health care have different needs for licensure. Some states need an exam given by the Behavior Analyst Certification Board.

You can get licensed as a Licensed Professional Clinical Counselor. Or, you’ll get licensed as a Licensed Mental Health Professional.

What Skills Do I Need?

Leadership and interpersonal skills will help you in this profession. Behavioral therapists need to create a safe and trusting environment. Patients should feel free to talk about their problems without any judgment.

Therapists need to listen well. They also need to direct the conversation to problematic areas in the patient’s life. Having analytical skills will help you assess a patient’s problems. You can also decide on intervention needs.

You will need to plan intervention and track how the process is going. You’ll decide whether to stay on that route or make a new plan.

Behavioral therapists need to work as part of a team. Try and remain confident so your patient will feel assured that their treatment is going to work. Accounting and business skills will help therapists interested in private practice.

If you’re studying now or plan to, check out our guide on time management tips for students.

Want to Learn More?

We hope you found this guide on becoming a behavioral therapist insightful. Take the time to find schools that offer behavioral psychology classes.

Want to learn more? Read about why you should become more aware of mental health.

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