Special Education - Master of Science in Education in Low Vision and Blindness
This program is open to licensed teachers who want to gain specialized skills to work with blind or visually impaired students covering ages three to twenty-one.
Your training will include a study of specialized content such as:
- braille reading and writing
- assistive technology for individuals with visual impairments
- functional vision assessments
- learning media assessments
- expanded core curriculum
As a licensed teacher for the visually impaired, you will be prepared to teach students from preschool through high school in a variety of classroom settings or resource rooms. The program also allows for individuals to work in a residential setting.
This fully online program is designed to meet the needs of full-time working teachers who progress through the five-semester program in a cohort, developing a strong network of collaborative partnerships that extend well beyond graduation. Our training program is designed to provide you with the knowledge and skills for success in this exciting career.
Point of Pride
Illinois State Low Vision and Blindness graduates are sought after by employers. Most graduates have already secured employment for the upcoming school year.
Dr. Mindy Ely
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How to Apply
University Admission Requirements
A student applying to a master's program must:
- have earned a four-year bachelor's degree or its equivalent from a college or university that is accredited by the appropriate regional accrediting association, or do so within one academic year
- have a minimum 2.8 GPA (on a scale in which an A is a 4.0) for the last 60 hours of undergraduate work
- present unofficial transcripts from each college or university other than Illinois State at which graduate, undergraduate, or non-degree credit was earned. The unofficial transcript should be easily readable and clearly indicate degree(s) awarded, courses and course grades for each term. If accepted, official transcripts can be emailed from the university to GraduateAdmissions@IllinoisState.edu or mailed in a sealed envelope to: Illinois State University, Graduate School, 209 Hovey Hall, Campus Box 4040, Normal, IL 61790-4040.
International students can learn more about specific application requirements by visiting the Office of Admissions.
Additional Program Admission Requirements
To be considered for this program, you must meet the following requirements.
You must have a 3.0 grade point average (on a four-point scale) for the last 60 hours of undergraduate work or a 3.0 grade point average in graduate-level work.
Submit a copy of your professional educator license.
Submit proof of successful completion of a student teaching experience, or an anticipated completion date if currently in student teaching, from an accredited university.
Submit a current resume.
Include a cover letter that outlines your professional goals.
Include contact information for two references that can address your professional work experiences that characteristics that will make you a successful graduate student.
TOEFL Score (International Students Only)
International students must have a TOEFL score of at least 79 iBT; the minimum acceptable IELTS score is 6.5 band.
Global Access to Online Degree Programs
When applying, international students applying to a fully online program must agree to our international online and hybrid programs disclosure and disclaimer statements. Due to limited on-campus courses, immigration documentation cannot be issued for students seeking F-1 or J-1 status.
- Summer 2023 Term — March 15. Cohorts begin every other year.
The University provides graduate assistantships as a means of financial support. They are intended as a way to facilitate a student's progress to degree while providing important professional development.
To be eligible for an assistantship a student must, generally,
- be admitted unconditionally as a degree-seeking student into a graduate academic program, or have a minimum of 120 undergraduate hours if in an integrated degree program
- be in good-standing
- be enrolled full-time (typically at least 9 credit hours during the fall or spring semesters, or at least 6 hours during the summer session).
Graduate assistants receive
- monthly wages paid in the form of either a stipend or an hourly wage
- a waiver for 100% of tuition during a semester of appointment
- a waiver for up to 12 credit hours of tuition for the summer term immediately following a fall or spring appointment
Costs & Funding
See Student Accounts for information on tuition and fees. Funding for graduate students is available from several different sources. Students who have been admitted from contiguous states including Iowa, Indiana, Kentucky, Michigan, Missouri, and Wisconsin will receive in-state tuition.
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