Applied Behaviour Analysis (M.Sc.)

NFQ Level 9
2 years full-time
15 Places


Course Overview

The M.Sc. in Applied Behaviour Analysis (ABA) is an intensive full-time course which aims to ensure that students become efficient in the practical application of the principles of applied behaviour analysis. The course provides theoretical, ethical, practical, and basic modules that involve face-to-face classes presented by qualified staff with expertise in Behaviour Analysis. Theory and practice are interwoven throughout the course. Class time includes lectures, interactive sessions, seminars, and group work. Students are required to actively engage in the content and process through discussion and demonstration, including reference to their own work experiences to integrate theory and practice.
This course has been verified by ABAI as meeting the Fifth Edition, 315-hour coursework requirement for those wishing to sit the Board Certified Behaviour Analyst® or Board Certified Assistant Behaviour Analyst® examinations. Students will need to meet additional requirements before becoming eligible to take the exam. Applicants to the course must also be aware of the residency requirements for sitting the BACB exam (you must physically reside in the US, Canada, Australia, or the UK in order to sit the BACB exam)

Is This Course For Me?

This course is open to those with an undergraduate Honours Degree in Psychology or related human service field wishing to become skilled to engage in the ethical practice and research of ABA, to conduct functional behavioural assessments, implement and design behaviour support plans or learning / skill acquisition programmes, and analyse and display data to make informed decisions around intervention and learning needs.

Career Opportunities

Graduates can become leaders in the developing Applied Behaviour Analysis field of service provision, both internationally and in Ireland, and/or gain a desire for future academic study in ABA, such as Ph.D. research. Graduates will be able to work in educational and clinical settings serving diverse populations, such as students with learning difficulties, persons with autism and other developmental disabilities and/or children and adolescents in care or special programmes, and/or those clients presenting learning and/or behavioural challenges in school.

Course Structure

In Year 1, students take six mandatory modules (six x 10 ECTS), including professional clinical practice, for a total of 60 ECTS. In Year 2, students take three mandatory modules (three x 10 ECTS) and complete a research dissertation (30 ECTS) for a total of 60 ECTS.
Every year, formal classes run from late September to late May and are normally held one day every week. Additionally, students meet with an appropriate supervisor (Board Certified Behaviour Analyst, (BCBA©) or Chartered Psychologist) for a minimum of 5 individual fieldwork supervision hours, which map on to 100 hours of supervised fieldwork from October to September in both years of the course.* Students must source a BCBA or Chartered Psychologist external to the course, for this fieldwork. Students receive continuous assessment and feedback through regular supervision sessions and participation in class activities. Supervised fieldwork is also reported at intermediate and end points during the year. Students must maintain a portfolio of work throughout the course. Dissertation research is initiated during Year 2 and continued and finalised during the summer months.
*The supervision and fieldwork are sourced external to the course. Supervision costs can vary from approximately €50- €90 per hour so this can add a minimum of €250 - €450 per year to the costs depending on how many hours of supervision a student acquires in total and whether or not their supervisor is internal/external to their fieldwork site. 

Course Content

Students take nine mandatory modules across two years and complete a research dissertation.
Modules offered in recent years include: ABA Definitions, Characteristics & Basic Principles; Selecting, Defining & Measuring Behaviour; Behavioural Assessment; Behavioural Intervention, Measurement & Evaluation; Personnel Supervision & Management; Professional & Ethical Practice in ABA; Research Dissertation; Advanced Philosophical Underpinnings; Theoretical Approaches in Behaviour Analysis; and Applications of Recent Theoretical Advances in Behaviour Analysis.

Click here for further information on modules/subject,

Study Applied Behaviour Analysis (M.Sc.) at Trinity

An introduction of what the field of applied behavior analysis is and what we study in Trinity College Dublin to enable us to become expert behaviour analysts.

Course Details


NFQ Level 9

Number of Places

15 Places

Next Intake

September 2024

Course Coordinator

Associate Professor Olive Healy (Year 1)

Associate Professor Maeve Bracken (Year 2)

Closing Date

30th April 2024

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Admission Requirements

Applicants will normally be required to hold a 2.1 Honours degree in Psychology or a related field from a recognised third-level institution.

Students will be required to undergo Garda Vetting, you can learn more at:

Course Fees

Click here for a full list of postgraduate fees


To apply, click on the relevant Apply Link below

Get in Touch

Telephone Number

+353 (0)1 8962290


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Register your interest in studying at Ireland’s leading university, Trinity College Dublin, the University of Dublin.

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I found the experience rewarding both the educational value and the professional support I received. My professors, project supervisor and Course Director were all incredibly knowledgeable, pragmatic and supportive. As a student I felt welcome and supported. It’s a fantastic course and I’d recommend it to anyone interested in studying a practical and effective area of psychology. It’s also currently a field in which trained professionals are in high demand so, there is a viable and sustainable career open to graduates. I am now working full-time, and I attribute this largely to the programme.