What to look for in a good BCBA supervisor

June 14, 2015
  • As you search and search for a reasonably priced supervisor or experience opportunity, we may forget to ask important questions that really do have an impact on the quality of experience. Rather than looking at price, quality should be the focus. There are 5 key factors to look for in order to gain a positive fieldwork experience.

    1. Your supervisor follows the BACB guidelines for independent fieldwork.

    In order to ensure that your experience hours are accepted by the board, it is essential that your supervising BCBA is following the guidelines. Be wary of supervisors that may just sign supervision sheets without involvement. This type of supervision is unlikely to provide you with the skills to be prepared to sit for the exam. Our field prides itself on a high standard of ethics. Independent fieldwork is no exception.  To find the guidelines for supervision visit http://www.bacb.com/Downloadfiles/ExamApplications/bcba/1505%20experience%20standards.pdf

    1. They are actively engaged with you!

    The supervisor that you choose should be willing to answer questions, communicate, and listen to you. Be sure that you are able to ask questions without worry of extra charges. Your supervisor should be a resource to help guide you to the exam.

    1. The fieldwork experience is structured to work on skills that are important to you.

    We all have our individual strengths and weaknesses. Your independent fieldwork should work on skills that enhance your personal repertoire and challenge you to be a stronger professional. Be sure that your experience opportunity is customized for you and not something that is simply replicated.  One way a supervisor is able to do this is having each supervisee complete a task list assessment to help determine what areas should be the focus and which can simply be reviewed.

    1. Make sure you are not just given answers.

    Fieldwork experience should be challenging. The goal is to provide you with the opportunity to learn how to apply the skills you learn about in your school programs. Supervision should allow you the opportunity for learning and practice. This is the time to make mistakes and learn from them.

    1. Find a supervisor that will provide you with a variety of experiences.

    Independent fieldwork should consist of a variety of experience opportunities. Find a supervisor who will connect you with multiple practicing clinicians, observe multiple styles, and practice different techniques. This is the opportunity to learn as much as you can. Please make sure to seek out a supervisor who provides as many opportunities as possible.

    For more information on supervision opportunities at Hoom House, visit http://www.hoomhouse.com/supervision/.

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