Autism and Behavioural Sciences

Program: ATBS
Credential: Ontario College Graduate Certificate
Delivery: Part-time - online
Work Integrated Learning: 2 Field Placements
Length: 3 Semesters
Duration: 1 Year
Effective: Fall 2023, Winter 2024, Summer 2024
Location: Orillia


Students develop an understanding of current theories and treatment methodologies used to treat Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD), and incorporate modified practices and procedures appropriate to the child and the situation. Emphasis is placed on the design and implementation of effective behavioural treatment plans according to the principles of Applied Behaviour Analysis (ABA) and Intensive Behaviour Intervention (IBI). The curriculum covers the range of evidence-based practices in autism treatment, the characteristics of ASD, as well as child development and augmentative communication systems. This provides students with the expertise in the field of autism and behavioural science for application within the autism and children's service sector. Theories, terminology, and applications to current approaches to teamwork and working with families of children with ASD are presented.

Career Opportunities

Graduates of this program may find employment opportunities in autism services and children's services such as employment as Instructor Therapists for regional providers of preschool programs; private providers of intensive behavioural intervention (IBI) therapy to families under the supervision of regional providers of preschool programs; autism treatment teams, autism specialists in agencies providing autism services; by school boards to deliver programs for children with autism and community and other service agencies.

Program Learning Outcomes

The graduate has reliably demonstrated the ability to:

  1. assess and analyze the characteristics, skills, and behaviour of individuals with ASD to effectively implement evidence-based behaviour interventions;
  2. design and implement effective behavioural intervention plans under appropriate supervision based on the principles of Applied Behaviour Analysis (ABA);
  3. evaluate the effectiveness of behavioural intervention plans based on the principles of ABA;
  4. collaborate with families, teams, service providers, and the broader community to respond to the learning and behavioural needs of individuals with ASD;
  5. design, implement, and evaluate as part o f a team, ABA based transition plans for individuals with ASD;
  6. comply with established ethical principles and professional guidelines;
  7. provide leadership in the promotion and provision of services to meet the needs of individuals with ASD and their families;
  8. evaluate empirical evidence in order to select appropriate interventions for individuals with ASD.

Admission Requirements

  • College diploma, or university degree, with a specialty in Behavioural Science, Sociology Child Studies, Education, Psychology or Rehabilitation or similar discipline.

Criminal Reference/Vulnerable Sector Check

Placement agencies require an up-to-date clear criminal reference check and vulnerable sector check prior to going out on placement. Students should obtain their criminal reference three months prior to placement; checks conducted earlier may not be considered current. As some jurisdictions require longer lead-time for processing, please check with the program coordinator to ensure you allow for sufficient turn-around time. It is the student's responsibility to provide the completed document prior to placement start.

NOTE: A record of criminal offences, for which a pardon has not been granted, may prevent students from completing their placements, thereby affecting their ability to graduate.

Additional Information

Students are required to provide evidence of approved certification in Non-Violent Crisis Prevention/Intervention (TCI or NVCPI) and Possession of a Standard First Aid and (HCP) (either St. John Ambulance or Canadian Red Cross or equivalent) as a prerequisite to the Field Placement component of this program.

Graduation Requirements

9 Program Courses
2 Field Placements

Graduation Eligibility

To graduate from this program, a student must attain a minimum of 60% or a letter grade of P (Pass) or S (Satisfactory) in each course in each semester. The passing weighted average for promotion through each semester and to graduate is 60%.

Program Tracking

The following reflects the planned course sequence for full-time offerings of the Fall intake of the program. Where more  than one intake is offered  contact the program co-ordinator for the program tracking.

Plan of Study Grid
Semester 1Hours
Program Courses
BESC 1000 Introduction to Applied Behaviour Analysis (ODE) 56
BESC 1001 Introduction to Autism Spectrum Disorder (ODE) 42
BESC 1002 Specialized Instructional Strategies (ODE) 56
BESC 1003 Working with Families and Teams (ODE) 42
ETHS 1000 Ethics and Professionalism (ODE) 28
Semester 2
Program Courses
BESC 1006 Parent and Staff Training (ODE) 28
BESC 1007 Transition Planning and Implementation (ODE) 28
BESC 1008 Treating Challenging Behaviours (ODE) 42
BESC 1010 Behavioural Skill Building (ODE) 56
Field Placement
BESC 1004 Field Placement 1 140
Semester 3
Field Placement
BESC 1009 Field Placement 2 210
 Total Hours728

Graduation Window 

Students unable to adhere to the program duration of one year (as stated above) may take a maximum of two years to complete their credential. After this time, students must be re-admitted into the program, and follow the curriculum in place at the time of re-admission.

Disclaimer: The information in this document is correct at the time of publication. Academic content of programs and courses is revised on an ongoing basis to ensure relevance to changing educational objectives and employment market needs. 

Program outlines may be subject to change in response to emerging situations, in order to facilitate student achievement of the learning outcomes required for graduation. Components such as courses, progression, coop work terms, placements, internships and other requirements may be delivered differently than published.

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