The PhD program in Behavior Analysis is a 68-credit doctoral program designed to train and position qualified behavior analysts to make significant contributions to the science and to the community.

Candidates should have the motivation and capacity to contribute to professional literature. They should also be interested in a fusion style of research wherein the findings from other disciplines are used to improve behavior analytic research.

Coursework includes topics such as behavioral assessment, descriptive analysis, demonstration of functional relations, measurement and intervention tactics, data display and interpretation, selection of target behaviors and goals, family issues, legal and ethical issues and crisis management.

While many students in our Applied Behavior Analysis programs are drawn from the fields of education and special education, the potential applications for this degree vary widely. Our alumni go on to satisfying careers in diverse fields such as behavioral medicine, organizational behavior management, instructional design and animal training.

Program Requirements

Candidates must have a Master's degree or higher in Behavioral Education, Applied Behavior Analysis or a related field, including psychology, education, or special education. Additional requirements include official transcripts from all coursework completed since high school, three letters of recommendation, a résumé, a statement of purpose, an analytical writing sample, an interview, and official GRE general test scores.

This program requires 68 semester hours, the equivalent of 17 courses. Students may enroll on either a full- or part-time basis beginning in the fall, spring, or summer semesters.


DEDU 651 Applied Statistical Analysis I
DEDU 652 Applied Statistical Analysis II
DEDU 653 Qualitative Research
DEDU 654 Quantitative Research
DEDU 655 Diversity in Education
DEDU 670 Dissertation Seminar
DEDU 690 Dissertation
DEDU 699 Dissertation Extension


DABA 601 History of Applied Behavior Analysis
DABA 610 Verbal Behavior
DABA 615 Behavioral Research in Education
DABA 616 Behavioral Consultation in Schools
DABA 620 Organizational Behavior Management
DABA 625 Advanced Functional Assessment and Analysis
DABA 630 Experimental Analysis of Behavior
DABA 635 Behavioral Medicine
DABA 640 Professional and Scholarly Activity

    Russel Maguire
    • Russell Maguire
    • Associate Professor/Chair, Grad Prog. Director, Behavior Analysis
    • Phone: 617-521-2550
    • Office: W303E
    Ronald Allen
    • Ronald Allen
    • Associate Professor of Practice of Behavior Analysis and Doctoral Program Director
    • Phone: 617-521-2571
    • Office: W303F
    Gretchen Dittrich
    • Gretchen Dittrich
    • Associate Professor of Practice of Behavior Analysis and Director of Mentoring and Supervision
    • Phone: 617-521-2517
    • Office: W303G
    Judah Axe
    Noelle Neault
    • Noelle Neault
    • Associate Professor of Practice of Behavior Analysis and D
    • Office: W303H
    Philip Chase
    • Philip Chase
    • Professor of Practice of Behavior Analysis
    • Office: W303I
All faculty ยป
Verbal Behavior DABA-610 4.00 Lecture
Organizational Behavr Managmnt DABA-620 4.00 Lecture
Behavioral Research in Educ. DABA-615 4.00 Lecture
Behavioral Consults in School DABA-616 4.00 Lecture
Adv. Func. Assess & Analysis DABA-625 4.00 Lecture
Experimental Analysis of Behv DABA-630 4.00 Lecture
Behavioral Medicine DABA-635 4.00 Lecture
Applied Statistical Analysis I DEDU-651 4.00 Lecture
Applied Statistics Analysis II DEDU-652 4.00 Lecture
Qualitative Research DEDU-653 4.00 Lecture
Quantitative Research DEDU-654 4.00 Lecture
Diversity in Education DEDU-655 4.00 Lecture
Dissertation Seminar DEDU-670 4.00 Lecture
Dissertation DEDU-690 8.00 Lecture 
Dissertation Extension DEDU-699 0.00 Lecture
History of Behaviorism DABA-601 4.00 Lecture
Scholarly & Prof. Activity DABA-640 4.00 Lecture

Collaborative Research

Students are actively engaged in professional research, teaming up with Simmons's nationally renowned faculty to implement, write, and publish research, and to present their work at national conferences and in peer-reviewed journals.

Recent research topics include:

  • Learning to Ride: Pedaling Made Possible Through Positive Behavioral Interventions
  • Constructed-Response Spelling and Literary Development: An Application in an Urban Classroom
  • Task Analysis, Correspondence Training, and General Case Instruction for Teaching Personal Hygiene Skills
  • The Effects of Word-Picture Associations on the Vocabulary Development of High School Students with Dyslexia
How to Apply

If you have already submitted your application online you can check your application status here. Please allow three business days for received documents to be reflected on your application status page.

Admission options and prerequisites vary by program. Learn more about the requirements for the PhD in Behavior Analysis.

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