Behavior Therapist Salary

An average Behavior Therapist in the United States can expect to take home roughly $16.07 per hour. Compensation for this group is mainly affected by geography, but career duration and the particular employer are influential factors as well. Job satisfaction for Behavior Therapists is high. Some workers in this field — around half — are not awarded benefits. Medical coverage is reported by about one-half and dental plans are enjoyed by nearly two in five. Women account for the majority of Behavior Therapists who took the survey — 87 percent to be exact. The numbers in this rundown were provided by PayScale's salary survey participants.

$25,254 - $53,655
$25K
$37K
$54K
MEDIAN: $36,856
10%
50%
90%

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$12.14 - $20.60
$12
$16
$21
MEDIAN: $16.07
10%
50%
90%

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National Salary Data (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Take the PayScale Survey to find out how location influences pay for this job.
)
$0$18K$36K$54K
Salary
$25,254 - $53,655  
   
Bonus
$0.00 - $1,186  
Total Pay (?
XTotal Pay combines base annual salary or hourly wage, bonuses, profit sharing, tips, commissions, overtime pay and other forms of cash earnings, as applicable for this job. It does not include equity (stock) compensation, cash value of retirement benefits, or the value of other non-cash benefits (e.g. healthcare).
)
$25,400 - $46,641  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 25 Mar 2017 | Individuals Reporting: 110
© PayScale, Inc. @ www.payscale.com
National Hourly Rate Data (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Take the PayScale Survey to find out how location influences pay for this job.
)
$0$9$18$27
Hourly Rate
$12.14 - $20.60  
   
Hourly Tips
$7.79  
Overtime
$15.00 - $26.96  
National Annualized Data (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Take the PayScale Survey to find out how location influences pay for this job.
)
$0$18K$36K$54K
Bonus
$0.00 - $1,186  
   
Total Pay (?
XTotal Pay combines base annual salary or hourly wage, bonuses, profit sharing, tips, commissions, overtime pay and other forms of cash earnings, as applicable for this job. It does not include equity (stock) compensation, cash value of retirement benefits, or the value of other non-cash benefits (e.g. healthcare).
)
$25,400 - $46,641  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 25 Mar 2017 | Individuals Reporting: 480
© PayScale, Inc. @ www.payscale.com

Find Out Exactly What You Should Be Paid

United States (change)

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Job Description for Behavior Therapist

Behavior therapists work in clinics and assist with the treatment of various mental disorders using behavioral techniques. They may work with different types of clients, but individuals this position often deal with children who have been diagnosed with an autism spectrum disorder. Behavior therapists may also be found in schools and substance abuse clinics, where they use behavioral therapies to help people find alternatives and strategies for dealing with substance abuse. Individuals in this position may work with a client one on one; however, they often also work with the patient’s family members to help the family members learn how to best interact with the client and support their growth.

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Behavior Therapist Tasks

  • Provide treatment to patients with techniques to modify and replace behaviors in a home, community, or clinic environment.
  • Evaluate and document patients' progress.
  • Devise appropriate and individual treatment plans to individuals or groups of patients.

Common Career Paths for Behavior Therapist


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Behavior Therapists might see a strong upturn in salary after transitioning into upper-level roles such as Board Certified Behavior Analyst, a seemingly popular career choice. People currently working in the latter position report a noticeably higher median income of $58K per year.

Behavior Therapist Job Listings

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Popular Employer Salaries for Behavior Therapist


The Center for Autism and Related Disorders reports the lowest median salary in the area (it's only $26K) but some workers make up to $41K, indicating a rather large gap in employee earnings.

Pay by Experience Level for Behavior Therapist

Median of all compensation (including tips, bonus, and overtime) by years of experience.


Relatively untried employees who have fewer than five years of experience earn around $33K on average. People who have worked for five to 10 years can expect a higher median salary of $39K. Behavior Therapists who work for 10 to 20 years in their occupation tend to earn about $45K. Survey participants with more than twenty years of experience only make around $42K on average, though; this group reports a lower median than the one claimed by mid-career individuals.

Pay Difference by Location

National Average: $34,269

Larger city markers indicate a job is popular in that location.

With a pay rate for Behavior Therapists that is 24 percent greater than the national average, Chicago offers a comfortable salary for those in this profession. Behavior Therapists can also look forward to large paychecks in cities like Oakland (+10 percent), Boston (+7 percent), San Jose (+6 percent), and San Diego (+4 percent). Those in the field find the lowest salaries in Austin, 19 percent below the national average. Below-median salaries also turn up in Fresno and Sacramento (14 percent lower and 7 percent lower, respectively).

Behavior Therapist Reviews

Q: What is it like working as a Behavior Therapist?

Behavior Therapist in Austin:
`"$Rewarding But Not Financially."`
Pros: It is very rewarding doing therapy with these kids. However, I feel eventually I will have to find a job that pays more because I need a livable wage. It will be hard to leave this phenomenal staff and amazing kids but I won't have a choice soon.
Cons: Sporatic hours and no guarantee of hours. It is good for those who have parents or spouses for additional financial help. If you don't have this financially this job is draining.

Related Job Salaries

Key Stats for Behavior Therapist

Gender

Female
87 %
Male
13 %

Job Satisfaction

Highly satisfied
Rated 4 out of 5
based on 67 votes.
Less than 1 year
9%
1-4 years
68%
5-9 years
14%
10-19 years
7%
20 years or more
1%
Location:
Years in Fields/Career:
United States (change)

Experience Affects Behavior Therapist Salaries

Experienced
▲31%

Late-Career
▲24%

▲12%

National Average
$34,000

▼3%

Skills That Affect Behavior Therapist Salaries

Functional Analysis
▲17%

Bilingual
▲11%

Activities for Children
▲9%

Oral / Verbal Communication
▲6%

Training
▲3%

Counseling
▲1%

Data Collection
▼0%

National Average
$34,000

Spanish Language
▼1%

ABA
▼2%

Childhood Education
▼5%

ABA therapy
▼6%

Data Analysis
▼7%

Applied Behavior analysis
▼12%

Job Satisfaction

Highly satisfied
Rated 4 out of 5
based on 67 votes.

Gender

Female
87 %
Male
13 %

Years of Experience

Less than 1 year
9%
1-4 years
68%
5-9 years
14%
10-19 years
7%
20 years or more
1%

Common Health Benefits

medical benefits
Medical: 51%
dental benefits
Dental: 40%
vision benefits
Vision: 27%
dental benefits
None: 48%
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