ABA Careers ABA Therapy Blog

What Makes A Good ABA Therapist

Joshua Sleeper September 23, 2020

At Trumpet Behavioral Health, we know that becoming an ABA therapist is more than a job – it’s a transformative career that allows you to change children’s lives. There are many ABA roles that have unique job responsibilities, and no two therapists are the same. However, there are a few universal traits that most ABA therapists share. If you’re interested in working with children with autism, read on to learn more about what it takes to become an effective ABA therapist.

READ MORE: How To Become An ABA Therapist

Behavior Analyst Skills and Abilities


ABA is an evidence-based approach that works best when individuals with autism are paired with empathetic and compassionate therapists. Bad days happen to all of us, and children are no exception. Sometimes, for various reasons, a child may be disengaged, disinterested in therapy, or regress back to challenging behavior. Instead of getting upset, it’s important that ABA therapists practice empathy. An empathetic ABA therapist should take the time to understand why the child is acting a certain way and be prepared to change course if the planned session isn’t working.


ABA therapy is a flexible treatment that can be adapted to the needs of each child, which means ABA therapists need to be adaptable, too. What works perfectly for one child may be inappropriate or ineffective for another, and ABA therapists must use each child’s history, current behaviors, and challenges to determine the best course of action. By being adaptable to each situation, autism therapists can reinforce desired skills while managing maladaptive behavior.


Treating autism takes time and consistency. By practicing patience, ABA therapists can set reasonable goals for each child and help them make small steps to meet them. Patience also plays an important role in an ABA therapists’ daily life. When children with autism display challenging or aggressive behavior, you’ll need to stay calm and avoid becoming visibly frustrated.


ABA therapists are passionate about both the study of ABA therapy and helping others. By diving deep into the latest research and trends, you’ll be more equipped to help the children you work with every day. By balancing your love of knowledge with your passion for helping people, you can help children with autism overcome their greatest challenges and live life to the fullest.


Professionalism is an important aspect of any career. A successful ABA therapist should arrive on time, communicate clearly with the families they’re serving, and collaborate with other ABA professionals. Whether you’re at a patient’s home or in a treatment center, it’s important to maintain professionalism at all times.

What Degree Do You Need To Become An ABA Therapist?

Education and training are important parts of becoming an ABA therapist. The entry-level ABA role, called a Registered Behavioral Technician (RBT) requires either a high school or bachelor degree, depending on the location. You’ll need to hold a bachelor degree to become a Board Certified Assistant Behavior Analyst (BCaBA), and you’ll need a master’s degree to become a Board Certified Behavior Analyst (BCBA).

How Long Does It Take To Become An ABA Therapist?

In addition to education, each ABA therapist role requires you to pass certification exams and reach a certain number of training or supervisory hours. Depending on the type of ABA therapist you’d like to become, it can take anywhere from a few months to several years. To become an RBT, you’ll need to complete 40 hours of training and pass several examinations. More advanced ABA roles require extensive training hours in addition to a bachelor or master’s degree. Aspiring BCaBAs must complete an additional 1,000 hours of fieldwork, while emerging BCBAs need 1,500 hours of supervised work experience.

At Trumpet Behavioral Health, we’re passionate about helping you grow your career. With positions for Registered Behavioral Technicians, Board Certified Assistant Behavior Analysts, and Board Certified Behavior Analysts on staff, each team member can receive the training and mentorship they need to succeed. We even offer paid training, supervisory hours, and tuition reimbursement to help you advance your career.

READ MORE: Find Available ABA Therapy Jobs At Trumpet!

Ready to start a rewarding and fulfilling career? Contact us today to learn more about our certification program or view open positions near you.