Applied Behavioral Science
The College of Liberal Arts & Sciences offers a BA and BGS, as well as a MA, PhD, and a joint PhD-MPH in Applied Behavioral Science, which prepares students for careers in such fields and setting such as early childhood education; early childhood intervention programs; community programs for children, youth, and adults with developmental and/or physical disabilities; delinquency, juvenile justice, and law enforcement programs; public health and health care settings; and community-based and nongovernmental organizations. Many careers are enhanced by or require graduate study or professional training.
Sample of Related Skills
- Interconnect personal, interpersonal, institutional, and community change
- Evaluate and try to overcome barriers to healthy development and well-being at all levels of life
- Strategize and develop policies that promote well-being in individuals, families, and communities
- Research and develop preventive and strengths-promoting strategies as applied to complex, multicultural systems
- Address social problems within communities
- Better the lives of people with disabilities and youth and/or juvenile offenders
Popular Career Paths
Social and Human Services: Involves providing personal care services to special populations such as lower SES, youth at-risk or people with disabilities as well as community outreach and education.
Counseling/Therapy Services: Includes participating in programs that emphasize client empowerment, advocating for policies that promote the well-being of specialty populations, and providing counsel.
Gerontology: Entails providing personal care, health care, advocacy, and personal counseling to older adults in a variety of settings.
Health Professions: This path involves many outlets to expand on personal interests in a wide range of health occupations such as nursing, occupational therapy, and speech pathology.
Education: Embodies working with children and adolescents in an educational setting while focusing on their development.
Explore More Career Paths
- American Association of Family and Consumer Services - resource for students and professionals from multiple practice settings and content areas
- Counselor License - licensing requirements for every state, information on specific counseling specialties, and articles investigating new trends
- Kansas Department of Social and Rehabilitation Services - career paths and job listings with SRS
- KU Center for Community Outreach - local volunteer opportunities in a variety of areas, including poverty, seniors and youth
- National Association for the Education of Young Children - national organization dedicated to improving the well-being of all young children
- National Council on Family Relations - information for students and new professionals regarding a concentration on the family system
- Health and Human Services of Lawrence - a local social services agency in the Lawrence area
- The Journal of Applied Behavioral Science - professional publication containing articles concerning research in the field of applied behavioral science
Jobs to Consider
- Case Manager
- Child Development Supervisor
- Child Life Specialist
- Community Organizer
- Day Care Provider
- Development Officer
- Family Financial Counselor
- Family Resource Coordinator
- Family Support Worker
- Human Resources Manager
- Marriage and Family Therapist
- Parent Educator
- Preschool Instructor
- Probation Officer
- Public Health Educator
- Public Relations Director
- Psychosocial Skills Trainer
- School Counselor
- Family Policy Analyst
Places to Seek Employment
- Adoption Agencies
- Child Development Centers
- Child Welfare Agencies
- Criminal Justice Settings
- Research Institutes
- Policy/Advocacy Organizations
- Human Rights Organizations
- Military Family Support Services
- Non-profit Organizations
- Head Start Programs
- Victim/Witness Support Services
- State and Local Health Departments
- Senior Day Program Centers
- Employee Assistance Programs
Job and Internship Search Resources
- American Society on Aging - information, job listings, and helpful links for those interested in working with the elderly
- Children's Defense Fund - internships to help in the advancement of children's rights and standard of living
- Idealist - local, national, and international internships in non-profit and government organizations
- Internships USA - Lists of internships by industry including The Human Rights Internship Book and Internships in Community and Social Service Agencies
- Non-Profit Connect - local non-profit job and internship opportunities as well as non-profit career resources
Career Exploration Hub
- Identify areas of interest related to your major so you can focus your academics and experiences towards these fields.
- Gain direct experience within the areas that interest you most through research projects, independent studies, internships, part-time jobsstudent organization involvement, or volunteering
- Register for Hire Jayhawks and subscribe to the Internship Newsletter to receive automated weekly emails with specific internship information.
- Consider joining a professional organization related to your area of interest, and, if possible, attend local and/or regional conferences to make connections with professionals working in your field.
- Practice interviewing on your own or by conducting a mock interview at the University Career Center.
- Develop your resume and tailor it to your area(s) of interest.
- Earn a minor or take additional coursework outside your major when relevant to your career goals.
- Complete an independent study to gain advanced research skills.
- Maintain a strong GPA if you are considering pursuing graduate or professional school.
- Consider getting involved with a student organization at KU related to your area of interest.