Can You Take the BCBA Exam Online?

In today’s digital age, the convenience of online testing has become increasingly appealing. Many aspiring Board Certified Behavior Analysts (BCBAs) wonder if they can take the BCBA exam online. This post will explore the current options for taking the BCBA exam, including the possibility of online testing and what candidates need to know.

Traditional Exam Format

Traditionally, the BCBA exam has been administered in a computer-based format at designated testing centers. These centers are typically equipped with the necessary technology to ensure a secure and standardized testing environment. Here’s how the traditional process works:

  1. Scheduling: Candidates schedule their exam through the Behavior Analyst Certification Board (BACB) once their application has been approved.
  2. Testing Centers: Exams are taken at authorized Pearson VUE testing centers, which are located in various regions to accommodate candidates.
  3. Security Measures: These centers implement strict security protocols to prevent cheating and ensure the integrity of the exam.

The Shift to Online Proctoring

With the advent of the COVID-19 pandemic, many testing organizations, including the BACB, had to adapt quickly to the changing landscape. The need for social distancing and safety measures led to the exploration of online proctoring as an alternative to in-person exams. Online proctoring allows candidates to take their exams from the comfort of their own homes under the supervision of a remote proctor.

BCBA Exam and Online Proctoring

As of now, the BCBA exam is not available for online proctoring. The BACB continues to require that the exam be taken at an authorized Pearson VUE testing center. This decision is rooted in several key considerations:

  1. Security: Ensuring the security and integrity of the exam is paramount. Testing centers provide a controlled environment where cheating and other forms of misconduct are minimized.
  2. Standardization: Testing centers offer a standardized experience for all candidates, which is crucial for maintaining the consistency and fairness of the exam.
  3. Technical Reliability: Online proctoring requires robust technical infrastructure. The BACB ensures that testing centers are equipped to handle any technical issues that may arise during the exam.

Future Considerations

While the BCBA exam is currently not available online, this could change in the future. The BACB regularly reviews and updates its policies and procedures to reflect advancements in technology and the needs of candidates. Here are some potential factors that could influence the adoption of online proctoring:

  • Technological Advancements: Improvements in online proctoring technology could address security and reliability concerns.
  • Candidate Feedback: Increased demand from candidates for more flexible testing options could prompt the BACB to consider online proctoring.
  • Global Accessibility: Online proctoring could make the BCBA exam more accessible to candidates in remote or underserved regions.

Preparing for the BCBA Exam

Regardless of the format, thorough preparation is essential for success on the BCBA exam. Here are some tips to help you get ready:

  • Understand the Exam Content: Review the BCBA Task List to familiarize yourself with the topics and tasks that will be covered.
  • Study Regularly: Develop a consistent study schedule that allows you to cover all the material and review regularly.
  • Use Quality Resources: Utilize reputable study guides, textbooks, and practice exams to reinforce your knowledge.
  • Join Study Groups: Collaborate with peers to discuss complex topics and share insights.
  • Seek Supervised Experience: Gain practical experience through supervised fieldwork to apply theoretical knowledge in real-world settings.


While the BCBA exam is not currently available for online proctoring, candidates must take it at authorized Pearson VUE testing centers. This ensures the security, standardization, and integrity of the exam. However, as technology evolves and candidate needs change, the possibility of online proctoring may be explored in the future.

For now, focus on preparing thoroughly for the exam and take advantage of the resources and support available to you. The journey to becoming a BCBA is challenging but incredibly rewarding, and passing the exam is a significant milestone in your professional development.

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