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© 2023 by Lou Sandler, PhD, BCBA - D.

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In 2016, the BCBA test pass rate was 66%. Consider that this percentage included 3,521 first time test takers along with 4,096 folks who had to schedule retakes that year. That means about 58% of test takers in 2016 were retaking the exam; an absurdly and unnecessarily LARGE number of people.


Persons miss such high stakes tests for a range of reasons from those more 'traditional' to include text anxiety and inadequate preparation time to others more idiosyncratic.


These range from inadequate courses/graduate training; poor BCBA supervision; overpriced, generic and confusing mock exams/review systems and lack of employer support and implementation all of which can leave gaps in content knowledge, concept, theory and, above all, real time procedures and application.

But....memorizing and rewriting each line line on the Task List will typically not help pass the exam.

Endless flashcards or rereading Cooper as if it is a novel will typically not help pass the exam.

Groups in which everybody writes questions but nobody actually knows or can agree to the answers will typically not help pass the exam.

Going online, typing in 'BCBA test prep' then moving from website to website will typically not help pass the exam but often does lead to still more confusion and stress.

Brief 'intensive' seminars will typically not help pass the exam.

Being taught language which is not Behavior Analysis and does not align with the exam or Cooper will, especially, not help pass the exam.

And for those who have tripped over this exam once, twice - more - going back to the same review and test prep processes which have already not been successful while increasing stress...will not help pass the exam. 

As part of a differentiated and integrated whole, however, the selected use of some of these above strategies individually and/or as a blend can be very helpful


Understanding, practicing and using the language of Applied Behavior Analysis will help pass the exam.

Tying concepts together and into a more comprehensive understanding will help pass the exam. 

Practicing with the Task List, by blending practical experience and vignettes, rather than memorizing definitions will help pass the exam. 

Thinking like a Behavior Analyst; approaching the exam process as a Behavior Analyst will help pass the exam.

Figuring out togeher and responding to that which has continued to interfere with your success will help pass the exam. 

Understanding and practicing the primary non-content processes which frame the exam blended with the content represented by the exam will help pass the exam.

Above all, clarity and consistency - relaxing a bit - and breaking the pattern will help you pass the exam.

I have successfully worked with many persons with good experience and content knowledge in Applied Behavior Analysis who had previously struggled to pass the BCBA exam.

So many motivated, hardworking and competent people should not be failing - and certainly should not be repeat failing - the BCBA exam. 

Another suggestion I sometimes offer is to not take the BCBA exam each time it's available on cycle but to potentially skip one in order to spend more individualized time studying/prepping - and relaxing a bit. This way we also can work together for a longer period of time. 

In addition to being a long time Clinical Behavior Analyst, I also have many years' experience as a teacher/educator, curriculum developer, BCBA and clinical supervisor. I know that effective instructional differentiation is of primary importance and therefore look to identify what consistently works best for each of my Test Prep and Supervision students....one at a time.

I will help you pass the BCBA exam.




My rates are just $60 for one live online session per week or $75 for one session every two weeks with sessions running about 90  minutes. I schedule two sessions per week when requested and reduce the cost of each individual session by $10 for a total of $100 for two 90 minute sessions each week. Scheduling 3 sessions per week is possible depending on availability. While the charge per session will remain at $50, I will reduce the final amount due each week by 8%.  

I will also offer small group BCBA/BCaBA test prep either with folks using the same computer or at different sites.

Fees will modify based on the number in individual groups with a $5 fee reduction per person based on my 1:1 weekly and biweekly fees

So...group of 2 persons would be $55 each weekly; group of three persons would be $50 each weekly and groups of four would be $45 each weekly and groups of five or more would be $40 each weekly.

Biweekly groups will reduce $10 per person starting at $70 each for two persons; $60 for each for biweekly groups of 3; $50 biweekly for groups of four. Biweekly groups for five or more persons will be $45 each.


I anticipate and am ready for all scheduled online sessions. With this, same day unexpected cancellations can be very disruptive. They also represent time blocks in which I could have scheduled another person.

Unexpected cancellations, those given with less than 24 hours warning, will typically be charged a missed appointment fee of 50% of the identified base rate. Unique circumstances will be considered. 

Unless previously discussed and agreed, all missed appointment and individual session invoices must be met prior to the next scheduled appointment.

While I do not request advanced payment for time blocks and have thus far kept my services 'at will,' completing a session - or missing a session by the above stated criteria - constitutes an agreement by the student to pay the invoice for that session. 


Unlike many other online test prep services, I do not require contracts signed for mandated period of times at an upfront cost. While I will want to schedule groups for at least four consecutive sessions to start, 1:1 sessions are set up individually with each student.

My students are typically very satisfied with the services and instruction I provide. If, for some reason, that is not the case for you, you may discontinue this service following payment of the last session held. If you are unhappy with my services and/or instruction, however, my first preference would be that you let me know what's going on and why  to see if we can resolve your concerns. 

My block fees for both 1:1 service and small group cover EVERYTHING from our online sessions which I individualize for EACH student, individually provided study and review materials as well as access to me by email between scheduled sessions.

Knowing, too, that life happens and this process can sometimes be difficult, I am open to individual discussion and review with regards to  my base fees and service structure.

The majority of folks who want to work with me will be able to afford to do so!

Scheduled online sessions last around 90-minutes. While differentiation and individualization means each student's session will not look the same, we will 

  • Review, check-in and update. Questions/thoughts by students are encouraged related to the last session; other study materials online and otherwise. 

  • Follow up of any topics raised via email since the last online session,

  • Prioritize and address individual unique content area needs,

  • Discuss, question from and review of the Task List/Foundational Concepts as individually relevant,

  • Consider move from behavioral concept to application to include use of both contrived and real time scenarios/vignettes,

  • Use my mock exam as a primary focus point with explicit attention to the non-content and structural areas of the BCBA exam to include, but not limited to, selecting the best response when more than one is (or seems) correct, eliminating choices in order to better select that which is correct when the student is less certain, recognizing the 'types' of questions asked in order to respond more effectively and overall structural dynamics of the exam. 

  • Review/provide study materials and offer individualized suggestions for personal study between sessions in order to better support and offer specific feedback to make  home study more efficient.

 Since my first conversation via video or phone is without charge or obligation, there's no reason not to schedule a time to talk.


Don't wait until a month before you're scheduled to sit for your BCBA exam. Start preparing now.



 Course Mentoring/Tutoring

Many folks I talk with who are working toward their BCBA across grad programs share that online clinical courses in particular and/or their BCBA supervision can sometimes be difficult to follow and/or not offer the individualized supports they need. Folks also tell me that some of their courses, or Supervision, may lack the clinical depth they'd expected to include a focus on increasing the probability for success on the BCBA exam.

I offer course mentoring/tutoring whether weekly, biweekly or on a schedule that best fits your need. While I will initially use the same weekly and biweekly fees identified above, they may modify depending on the depth of support and/or frequency of contact requested. Ongoing test prep will always be included. 


I also provide online BCBA supervision and remote clinical support at both the Direct and Indirect levels. More on this will be on my Clinical/Telebehavior page

 Since my first conversation via video or phone is without charge or obligation, there's no reason not to schedule a time to talk. Don't wait until a month or two before you're scheduled to sit for your BCBA exam. Start preparing now.