ABA Job Interview: 7 Best Tips to Prepare
Applied behavior analysis (ABA) is a natural science and more diverse than some may realize. The science can be applied to human behavior, whether that’s within neurotypical, neurodiverse, or even geriatric populations. As someone who has worked in many roles within the field (i.e., behavior technician, RBT, BCaBA, BCBA, and special education teacher) and in many settings (home, community, clinic, and schools), I know many of the challenges that come with preparing for an ABA Job Interview in this field. Here are 7 tips that have helped me get hired in the field of ABA.
- Learn about the company: You may want to know what populations they service, where they deliver services, the company size, and many other details. Some of this you can learn on their website; however, some of it can be learned through further research. For example, if you look at the company’s social media pages there might be reviews. Some companies respond to positive and negative feedback and these responses can give you a lot of details about how the company operates.
- Learn about the field: Interviewers often ask the interviewee why they are interested in the field, how they developed that interest, and what their experience is. Companies typically want employees who want to be in the field since it’s a difficult job, so being able to discuss aspects of the field is important in demonstrating your interest in having that specific job and not just any job.
- Learn about the position you are applying for: As mentioned in the previous tip, the field of applied behavior analysis can be a difficult field to work in physically, mentally, and emotionally. You may not need to have any experience dependent on the position you are applying for; however, you will need to be willing to work through some of the challenges that often arise.
- Be thoughtful with your responses: Have you ever heard the advice, “When you need to think about your answers, take a sip of water to allow yourself time”? Well, I began doing this and it has helped me so much to give more thoughtful responses instead of rushing my response. Additionally, when I carefully consider what is being asked of me, I am able to recognize if something is not clear to me and ask clarifying questions.
- Be honest about your experience: Dependent upon the position you are applying for, you may not need experience. Additionally, you may have experience working with a specific population or in a particular setting. If you are not honest about your experience, it will likely be evident after you have been hired. It is important to remember that, dependent on the company, position, and training protocols, there are times where extensive experience is needed and times where the company may prefer to hire someone newer to the field and train them.
- Be honest about your expectations: In an interview, you are interviewing the company just as much as they are interviewing you. You do not want to get in a “bait and switch” situation and get hired for a job that is not the job you were expecting. It is okay to ask questions, discuss boundaries, and discuss expectations.
- Ask questions about the company’s expectations of you: If you are expected specific time shifts or with specific populations, it is important that you know these expectations prior to accepting a job.
There you have it, my 7 tips for preparing for an ABA Job Interview in the field of ABA. Do you have any additional tips or tricks that have helped you prepare for the interview or get hired? We would love to hear from you!
Check out a few of our other blogs geared toward Behavior Technicians:
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