RBT Registered Behavior Technician Job Description: Top Duties and Qualifications

A Registered Behavior Technician, or RBT, is responsible for assisting behavioral analysis teams in evaluating mental health patients and their conditions over a certain timeframe. Their duties include adhering to behavioral health plans developed by other mental health professionals to provide patients with beneficial care, interviewing patients at their home or healthcare facility and drafting reports to relay their progress to senior mental health professionals.

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Registered Behavior Technician Duties and Responsibilities

A Registered Behavior Technician is responsible for the day-to-day execution of a behavioral health plan. This can include things like interviewing patients, conducting follow-ups and collecting data. They must also interact directly with patients or clients, who may be experiencing things like a substance abuse disorder or psychiatric disorder, and for meeting with patients’ or clients’ family members. Other important duties for Registered Behavior Technicians include:

  • Administering medications
  • Participating in counseling sessions and meetings
  • Answering questions from patients and their family members
  • Helping patients with everyday activities

What Does a Registered Behavior Technician Do?

Registered Behavior Technicians typically work for healthcare facilities in the mental health sector to monitor a patient’s response to behavioral therapy and treatments. They work closely with other mental health professionals, Physicians and Nurses to administer patient medications and record their reactions to treatments they receive. Their job is to sit in on counseling sessions, ask patients about how they feel and speak with senior mental health professionals when plans don’t seem to have a significant impact on their current behaviors. 

They may also be responsible for communicating directly with the patient’s family members to help them understand their loved one’s treatment and how to support them best when at home.

Registered Behavior Technician Skills and Qualifications

A successful Registered Behavior Technician needs various technical and interpersonal skills to excel in this role. First, these professionals need to complete years of education and training to develop skills related to areas like psychology and social work. This also covers things like collecting data and conducting interviews. Second, Registered Behavior Technicians need various people skills to help them communicate and connect with patients. This includes skills like:

  • Communication skills
  • The ability to empathize with patients and their family members
  • The ability to remain professional in high-stress situations
  • Flexibility and adaptability
  • Listening and reasoning skills

Registered Behavior Technician Salary Expectations

The average hourly pay for a Registered Behavior Technician is $17.25 per hour. The amount an employee in this field can earn depends on several factors, including the candidate’s years of experience, whether the position is entry-level or higher and whether the position involves any type of management responsibilities.

Registered Behavior Technician Education and Training Requirements

Registered Behavior Technicians must complete a bachelor’s degree in a related area, such as psychology, social work or psychology. To become a Registered Behavior Technician, students must complete 40+ hours of related classes. Next, candidates must complete testing—both a competency assessment and the Registered Behavior Technician exam.

Registered Behavior Technician Experience Requirements

After completing the required education and training minimum requirements, a person can find entry-level work as a Behavioral Health Technician. In fact, some companies hire candidates while they’re still pursuing their bachelor’s degree. Employers may also ask that applicants have prior experience working with the company’s targeted demographic (i.e., young children or people with disabilities). Finally, employers may prioritize candidates who have completed behavior analysis training at a clinic or school.

Job Description Samples for Similar Positions

Registered Behavior Technicians play an important role for any company that offers behavioral health services. Their skill set overlaps with many other professionals who play a role in behavioral analysis and psychology. To ensure you’re covering all the relevant skills you’d like to include in your job posting, it may be helpful to expand your research and look at job description samples for a few similar roles:

Frequently asked questions about RBT (Registered Behavior Technicians)

 

What is the difference between a Registered Behavior Technician and a Board Certified Behavior Analyst?

The difference between a Registered Behavior Technician and a Board Certified Behavior Analyst is their seniority and subsequent job responsibilities. For example, Board Certified Behavior Analysts need to earn a master’s degree in applied behavior analysis or a specialty area of psychology and pass the BCBA exam. In contrast, Registered Behavior Technicians need to earn a high school diploma followed by completing 40 hours of coursework and passing the RBT exams. 

Because of their differences in education, Board Certified Behavior Analysts have the ability to complete patient appointments alone and develop individualized plans. In contrast, Registered Behavior Technicians have to complete work with other professionals present and use previously developed plans to evaluate patient progress.

 

What are the daily duties of a Registered Behavior Technician?

On a typical day, a Registered Behavior Technician starts by arriving to their workplace or office location. They review their appointment schedule with their team and visit patients in their hospital room or at their homes. Before each appointment, they review previous evaluations of the patient and the behavior plan set in place. Throughout their visit, they speak with the patient and their family members to note any improvements or setbacks in their behavior. At the end of each day, Registered Behavior Technicians send their evaluations to senior mental health professionals for them to review.

 

What qualities make a good Registered Behavior Technician?

A good Registered Behavior Technician has a personable nature, allowing them to interact with mental health patients in a positive way and help them feel comfortable. They understand social queues and make sure to adjust their tone or posture to calm upset or nervous patients. Further, a good Registered Behavior Technician values continued education and look for certification courses and other opportunities to expand their knowledge of mental health conditions and treatment options. A good Registered Behavior Technician also works well as part of a team and seeks to support them in counseling and treating mental health patients.

 

Who does a Registered Behavior Technician report to?

Registered Behavior Technicians usually report to a Board Certified Behavior Analyst or Board Certified Assistant Behavior Analyst. These individuals create behavioral plans to help individuals learn how to live with or overcome behavioral challenges. Registered Behavior Technicians consult with Board Certified Behavior Analysts to figure out how to implement behavioral plans in a patient’s daily life. They also relay information to a Board Certified Behavior Analyst about whether a patient is improving based on their behavioral plan.

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