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Congratulations on being ready to pursue supervision towards your credentialing as a Behavior Analyst! This blog post is written to assist individuals seeking supervision to narrow down their search for a quality supervisor. The following are questions that you should ask of potential supervisors in order to have a mutually beneficial supervisory relationship.

  1. Have you been credentialed for more than a year?
    The Behavior Analyst Certification Board requires that individuals who provide supervision have been credentialed for a minimum of 1 year or more. Individuals who haven’t been credentialed for 1 year or more are required to have a supervisor who oversees your supervision. Ask any possible supervisors who haven’t been credentialed for 1 year or more if they have a supervisor. You can look up all behavior analysts on the board’s website to verify when they were credentialed and if they are able to supervise independently at this link: https://www.bacb.com/services/o.php?page=101135 Using myself as an example, (see pic below), when searching for me on the board’s website, you see that it says my Original Certification Date is 5/31/2011. This is the date that you want to use in order to verify someone has the 1 year credentialing requirement.
  2. Have you taken the 8 hour supervision course?
    The Behavior Analyst Certification Board requires that individuals who provide supervision take an 8 hour course on supervision to be able to supervise others. When searching the database, you will see a date that states when they completed the 8 hour supervision training. Continuing to use myself as the example in the picture below, you can see the line that says “Completed 8 hour supervision training on 4/25/2016.” If the person you are contacting has not completed the 8 hour training, they are not eligible to supervise you and any supervision that they provide will not count towards your overall hours.
  1. Does my state require licensure for you to provide me supervision?
    The next thing that you’ll want to verify is if your state requires that your supervisor be licensed in it. Some states do not count supervision hours that you receive if your state has licensure and your supervisor doesn’t have a license in that state. If your supervisor is licensed, ask them what states they are licensed in. If your state requires that your supervisor is licensed in your state and they aren’t, but provide you supervision, you may not be eligible for licensure in your state once you are credentialed and will have to complete supervision hours again with someone who is licensed in your state. Licensure requirements are state specific and are not regulated by the BACB.
  2. Tell me about your clinical experience? 
    Asking this question will tell you more about the type of experience the potential supervisor has – who have their clients been, what settings have they worked in, what assessments do they conduct regularly, and what conferences do they find most valuable?  You want to find a supervisor who has experience in areas that match your long term goals.
  3. What is your supervision rate?
    Supervision prices can range from free (if provided as a benefit by your employer) to hundreds of dollars per hour. Supervisors are charging for their time, resources they’ve created or will provide you access to, and their experience. It’s important to note that a higher cost of supervision doesn’t necessarily equate to higher quality. My advice would be to talk to atleast 3 individuals who provide supervision and to go with the supervisor that you believe you will gain the most valuable experience from and who is also within your budget.
  4. What would your past supervisees say about their experience?
    Supervisors should not only be giving continuous feedback to their supervisees, but they should also be asking for feedback from their supervisees about their supervision experience. Through this feedback loop, experienced supervisors are able to provide examples of feedback that they have been provided and they should be able to discuss how they have adapted their supervision in response to that feedback.
  5. What curriculum do you use?
    There are a variety of supervision curriculums that are available for supervisors to purchase and use with their team. Some supervisors may elect to use a standard/templated curriculum, and some supervisors may elect to create their own curriculum. The main goal for asking this question is that you want to know that there will be a structure to your supervision that involves you learning a variety of things, being observed, and getting feedback.
  6. Review job descriptions for BCBA® openings in your area. Ask if they will train you on specific things such as completing assessments, writing therapy goals, developing protocols, etc. 
    Your supervision experience should be filled doing things that are part of the BCBA® or BCaBA® job description. When your supervision is complete, you should feel that you have been trained well enough to do many of the items within a BCBA® job description.
  7. How will you conduct observations of me with clients?
    Your supervisor is required to observe you with a client atleast 2 times per month. It’s important to discuss and establish what this will look like prior to beginning the supervisory relationship. The supervisor can observe recordings or observe in real time by being onsite or through video conferencing. If your supervisor works at a different organization than you do,  you will want to make sure that you have permission to utilize your organization’s clients for supervision, have appropriate documents signed for confidentiality, and make sure that your supervisor has appropriate documentation in place to provide supervision in person if that will be the case. For example, schools may require that your supervisor have a background check completed to come in for observations and that parents give permission for their child to be a client for supervision.
  8. How will we track and sign monthly experience verification forms?
    Documentation of supervision is essential and is done through a supervision log as well as monthly experience verification forms that are signed by your supervisor. Supervision logs and monthly experience forms can be tracked via a shared document, apps, or paper/pencil and e-signed. Whatever method is used, this is something that you’ll want to discuss upfront with your potential supervisor so that you can ensure you create accounts or have settings enabled to accept documents in the needed formats.

PracticeEd provides supervision to a limited number of individuals. If you are ready to tackle your supervision goals, get in touch with me here. Schedule a complimentaty 15 minute consultation where your supervision goals can be discussed.

To learn more about me, click here.