What is the role of the Professional Advisory Board?
The International Behavior Analysis Organization's Professional Advisory Board (PAB) is made up of Behavior Analyst volunteers from twenty countries around the world. The PAB’s immediate responsibilities include shaping the updated requirements for the IBA™ and IBT™. The course content, supervised experience, exam content, and ethics guidelines are studied and organized, put out to the PAB for comment, opinion, and discussion. Those are then collected, reshaped, and put back to the board for final comment.
The PAB will be divided regionally to help shape local ethical and cultural considerations to be included in the ethical guidelines and grouped into content interests for exam item creation.
How do we know these certifications are the right ones?
There are currently multiple certifications available right now. The BACB® has 3 different ones and there are also the QASP®, QABA®, BCAT®, ABAT®, and others. The IBA™ and IBT™ however, are the only ones geared specifically to the needs of behavior analysts and behavioral therapists living outside the US and Canada. The International focus of the Professional Advisory Board will help ensure local, regional, and national issues that affect us are considered and addressed.
How will this board address the challenges for recognition, legislative changes and licensure in each country? Is there a strategic plan to cover this?
Right now, the goals are not that broad- they simply cannot be that broad to be manageable. The current goals are certification based on a person’s education, experiences (supervision), and passing the exam. In some countries, this has not been established at any level and people are delivering ABA services without any kind of gatekeeper or certification process. Other countries have embraced the BACB® system and have started working in more organized ways to use those certifications for legislative, funding, and regulatory purposes such as licensure. It is a future goal to consider that, where relevant. The IBAO™ certifications could be used to serve those roles if the structure could be established. Those will be case-by-case determinations. So, long term plans to consider those options where they might exist and where the IBAO™ certifications could be used to help support those endeavors.
Does this Association have a physical appearance somewhere? A Head Office for example in a specific country?
The IBAO™ is an online entity. Although it has a mailbox in the US, when the time comes, other offices could be developed as needed to address regional and national issues best addressed locally.
Are countries going to be registered as chapters/affiliates or is the plan to continue to register individuals?
Maybe. If what is only right now going to be an international certification process, turns to something else, we would need to organize local or national chapters to most effectively deal with those goals.
Will the IBAO™ create a lesser quality behavior analyst?
No. There are two answers here. The first is that in some areas, people are practicing without any credentials because those that currently exist are too difficult to reasonably obtain by non-english speaking people living outside of North America. For this group, the certifications will improve practice and protect the community by establishing criteria and practice guidelines where none exist.
The second is that we are simply going to make the process easier to attain, not lower the standards. The IBAO™ seeks to make demonstrating educational accomplishments easier by broadening the number of programs with approved course content and by allowing more ways to verify previous educational requirements. We intend to make the supervision and practice experiences easier to obtain, not less meaningful or less rigorous. Regarding the exam, we want to make that easier to access, not easier to pass. Instead of relying on test centers where travel and other expenses are a barrier for many people, online testing, online proctoring, and translated exams in more languages will be part of the solution.
Who will have oversight over ethical violations?
The ethical guidelines, once established, will guide professional conduct and practice. The guidelines for ethics will be aspirational for the short term, reviewed by the professional advisory board periodically to determine if changes need to be made. If they do, those decisions would be made by the board at that time. It is possible that we will develop a committee within IBAO™ to investigate fraud or complaints. Another possibility is to set up local control by country or region. These possibilities are being discussed.
Is the IBAO™ collaborating with the BACB® in any way?
No. We are not currently collaborating with any other organizations.
The BACB® cited that there is a lack of available secure testing facilities in many countries. What secure testing resources has IBAO™ identified to address this problem?
Testing facilities are quickly becoming an outdated way of considering test security. There are several options that provide the same exam protections and can be done from the comfort of someones’ home which in turn allows many more people to access the exams. Online testing and online proctoring options are now robust. The IBAO™ is looking at all of these options.
Will IBAO™ materials and exams by translated into other languages?
Yes, of course. The international focus requires this. Through the PAB and other friends around the world, we will translate into as many languages as possible.
There are some minor liabilities that will crop up as soon as you start collecting member information though with privacy laws in the EU/UK/NZ etc. In other words is the IBAO™ site where people are registering to get their certification GDPR compliant?
Yes, of course!
Will the organization be seeking international accreditation?
We have begun to investigate these possibilities. It could be looked upon as advantageous for some situations, and probably meaningless in others. However, all accreditation requires a long process. Some require a year of examinations and others a certain number of examinations (e.g., 500) to ever be eligible. So, we are looking at these options as we meet the requirements.