Admission Requirements

  • An online application (see the "Apply" page)
  • A well written statement of purpose (approximately 1,000 words, double-spaced, 12-point font)
  • Original or certified copies of all academic transcripts
    • Students graduating with a bachelor’s degree in the spring term (before June) are encouraged to apply
  • Three strong letters of recommendation
  • GRE scores if the applicant has a cumulative undergraduate GPA less than 3.0.

Applicants should have all of the following:

  • A well written statement of purpose, for example
    • Expressed conceptual understanding of the field of behavior analysis, the program at CSUN, and future goals as board certified behavior analysts
    • Clear commitment to becoming scientist-practitioners in the field of behavior analysis
  • Solid academic backgrounds (e.g., high academic grades, particularly in research methods, and behavior analysis coursework; or high GREs to supplement lower GPAs)
  • Strong Recommendation Letters from credible recommenders who observed the candidate in various relevant settings (e.g., as a student, as a behavior interventionist, and supervisee).
  • Valuable clinical experience through faculty research, employment, internships, volunteerships, etc.

For Admission to Classified Graduate Status

  1. Admission to the program generally requires an Undergraduate Degree (or its equivalent for international students), from a regionally accredited institution, in Psychology. Applicants who do not have a Degree in Psychology should consult with the program director.
  2. A GPA of 3.0 is required except on approval by the Graduate Admission Committee.
  3. For applicants with GPAs between 2.5 and 2.99, completion of the Graduate Record Examination (GRE) is required, with a score at or above the 50th percentile on any one of the three subject areas of the Graduate Record Examination (GRE) or a score of 4 or better on the GMAT (please see the Graduate Studies Handbook at the CSUN Graduate Studies website).
  4. General University requirements also must be met. Carefully consult other sections of the CSUN catalog for details. These requirements include passing the Upper Division Writing Proficiency Exam (UDWPE) with a score of 8 or higher.

    Conditionally Classified Status

    • Students who do not meet all admissions requirements for classified status may be accepted as conditionally classified students. Conditionally classified students will complete the “conditions” of their admission within the first year of their program and request classification from their program advisor.
    • Note that all CSUN students must be “formally classified” before applying to graduate and earning their degree from CSUN.

English Proficiency Requirements

The English language tests and minimum scores listed in the table below are accepted by CSUN for graduate applicants for Master of Science in Applied Behavior Analysis.

Test Name and Website Minimum Score Required for Graduate Students Send Score Directly To CSUN
TOEFL - Test of English as a Foreign Language — Computer-based score: 213
— Internet Based score: 79
— Paper-based score: 550
Use CSUN School Code 4707.
IELTS - International English Language Test System 6.5 or higher
Have IELTS send a copy of your Test Report Form to CSUN.
PTE Academic - Pearson’s Test of English 58 or higher Online through your PTE Academic Account

Exception:  If a graduate applicant has earned a bachelor's or master's degree from a college or university in the U.S., the TOEFL or other English language proficiency exam is not required.

If a graduate applicant has earned a bachelor's or master's degree from a college or university outside the U.S. where English is the principal language of instruction, the TOEFL or other English language proficiency exam is not required. Please note:

  • CSUN interprets "where English is the principal language of instruction" to mean that a school is located in a country where English is the daily medium of communication for the majority of residents, and that students receive academic instruction in English at all levels of education.
  • Countries currently meeting the above requirement are: Australia, Belize, Canada, England, Ireland, New Zealand, Northern Ireland, Scotland, and Wales, plus a few nations in the Commonwealth Caribbean (Antigua and Barbuda, the Bahamas, the Cayman Islands, and Trinidad and Tobago).