Frequently Asked Questions

Find answers to frequently asked questions about the M.A. Degree program, Autism Specialization and BCBA.

Have a question about the M.A. Degree Program/ Autism Specialization or Advanced Certificate in Behavior Analysis? If you can't find the answer below or elsewhere on this site, email [email protected] or [email protected].

Yes. You can try to enroll through Open University and pay per unit to SDSU World Campus. Bring a copy of the completed Open University Registration Form to the class on the first day the course is offered, and if there is room and the instructor approves, you can be added to the class. Check the SDSU Class Schedule for time and place of course offerings.
Currently, no online courses are available. All courses are taught on campus.
No. You need a B.A. in a related field for both programs. However, you will not be able to work in public schools as a special educator without a teaching credential so applicants need to be confident that they want alternative career paths. You also must have experience working with individuals with ASD and their families prior to entering the M.A. Degree program with a specialization in Autism as there are more applicants than spaces and we accept only applicants with experience.
No. All M.A. students must take SPED 527. In addition, completing SPED 553 is required for the BCBA, which is an integral part of the degree. (See course descriptions.)
Yes, but. Faculty will consider substituting a course taken at another university if a Substitution/Waiver form (PDF) is submitted to the Special Education Office along with a syllabus from the course completed and a transcript showing the grade received. BUT, if you are planning to apply to take the exam to become Board Certified as a Behavior Analyst, you will have to submit the transcript for this course with your application as SDSU has an approved sequence, with approved faculty who teach the sequence of courses. It is up to the student to demonstrate they have the required hours if they deviate from the SDSU sequence approved by the BACB®.
Yes. You may take prerequisite courses concurrently with the regular course load, although this makes for a very full schedule.
Yes. You can take up to 9 credits through Open University or SDSU World Campus prior to being accepted and matriculated in a program. You must be matriculated to graduate with the Advanced Certificate in Behavior Analysis. To take a course through Open University, obtain a form on line and show up to the first day of classes and ask the instructor to sign your forms. The instructor will let you add the class if there is space. 
Yes. Some of the courses needed to clear your credential are embedded in the M.A. Degree program. However, you will need to complete a department application for the Clear Credential program and meet with an advisor to work out the required sequence of courses for the Clear for your credential. (Link to a PDF document about the Clear Credential.)
No. The M.A. Degree Program with a Specialization in Autism is a 2-year program that must be completed with the others in your cohort. Completing this program requires a large time commitment.
Yes. You can complete the course sequence when courses are offered and as quickly as one year or more if you prefer. Please note that once matriculated it costs the same amount of tuition for between 1 and 6 credits.
No. We do not offer fieldwork placements for those completing the Advanced Certificate in Behavior Analysis. Many people get their supervision on the job. We can recommend some possible supervisors with BCBA but you may need to pay for supervision of the required 1,500 hours.