A career as an ABA therapist is one of the most rewarding callings a compassionate individual can aspire to. One of the best pathways for making a positive impact on the lives of others is to become a registered behavior technician.
Often referred to as an RBT a registered behavior technician is essentially a paraprofessional who uses ABA (Applied Behavior Analysis) treatment plans under the supervision and direction of board-certified ABAs therapists.
What Does A Registered Behavior Technician Do?
RBTs are directly responsible for executing the interventions and treatment strategies that are carefully developed by an applied behavior analyst. RBTs aren’t considered to be the patient’s primary counselor or diagnostic professional. They do not provide their own behavioral assessments or create their own treatment plans. This also means that the path to becoming an RBT is faster and can also be a great first step toward advancing one’s career into the ABA field.
A lot of RBTs will work one-on-one with a specific patient at any given time.
Their responsibilities can include following the treatment strategy guidelines:
- Conducting the intensive teaching sessions
- Facilitating interventions outlined in those plans
- Observing client behavior
- Data collection duties
- Reporting data to BCBAs & other professionals
Most RBTs work very closely with BCBAs, playing a critical role in assisting them with developing increasingly effective behavioral routines. This might also include coming up with the materials used in training. They can also assist in interventions where more than one individual is needed to facilitate the process.
Who Can Become An RBT?
Many RBTs are also professionals in other disciplines, who want to advance their knowledge base of the treatment strategies used in ABA therapy. This means that an RBT credential might also be earned by:
- Hospital & clinical staff
- Medical administrators
- Nursing supervisors
- Special needs professionals
- Home healthcare assistants
- Case managers
- Emergency response team members
- Hospice staff
- Substitute teachers
- Daycare staff
- Early Childhood Educators
What Are The Requirements To Become An RBT?
There are several key requirements an individual must meet before training to become an RBT.
- At least 18 years old
- Able to pass a criminal background check
Assuming you meet the eligibility requirements, you will also need to dedicate at least 40 hours of training to learn how to become a registered behavior technician. At the end of the training, you will also need to pass an assessment as well as a final exam.
It’s worth noting that the 40 hours of training is spread out over the course of several weeks or months. This is to make it easier for professionals in other disciplines to earn an RBT credential without having to sacrifice their current profession.
The Steps In RBT Training & Certification
There are several steps in the training and certification process to become an RBT.
Step One: Complete The 40 Hour RBT Training Course
The 40-hour course of training is administered by a BCBA or BCaBA. It includes a minimum of three hours of intensive training in ethics and professional conduct. Though this phase of the training can be performed in-person or online. It can be lecture-based or experiential.
Step Two: Apply For RBT Certification
Upon completion of the 40-hour training, you’ll then need to submit your application for your RBT certification.
Step Three: A Professional Assessment Is Performed