Master of Arts in Teaching in Special Education (LBS1 certification)
LEARN FROM THE EXPERTS: "HOW TO BECOME A TEACHER"
Special Information Sessions, June 2013
Discover how NLU can make your dreams of becoming a classroom teacher a reality. Attend an information session to learn more about our Master of Arts in Teaching programs.
National Louis University’s Master of Arts in Teaching in Special Education program is for students who have already earned their bachelor’s degree in another discipline and are interested in a career in this specialized area of education. If you’d like to obtain a special educator role in a K-12 setting, this degree program will lead you to your Illinois Type 10 Learning Behavioral Specialist (LBS 1) certification through a focused 47 semester hour course sequence.
Consider getting your special education master's degree at NLU if you:
- Have a bachelor’s degree in another discipline
- Would like to build a career in special education
- Would like to get your degree in as few as 15 months
- Want to study at a well-established teaching institution
Why NLU for a Special Education Master's Degree
NLU has a long-standing reputation for its education and teacher training programs, and is accredited by the National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education (NCATE). Since 1886, we’ve trained thousands of Chicago-area teachers, and continue to graduate the majority of Illinois’ Golden Apple Award winners— one of the most prestigious teacher honors in the state.
NLU’s updated curriculum aims to prepare teachers for the changing and increasingly complex professional roles of special educator in today’s schools. The combination and scheduling of coursework and intensive clinical experience enable students to practice what they are learning in the field.
What you will learn
Based on the IBSE Special Education Certification Structure and Content Area Standards, our curriculum will prepare you to work in a variety of education settings and in different roles in a/an:
- Inclusive classroom as a co-teacher
- Classroom as a collaborative consultant
- Resource room or self-contained classroom as diagnostic teacher
- Alternative setting, such as a special public or private school
The number of students requiring special education services has grown steadily in recent years due to improvements that have allowed learning disabilities to be diagnosed at earlier ages. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics Occupational Outlook, career opportunities for special education teachers is expected to increase by 17 percent from 2008 to 2018 as many districts report problems finding adequate numbers of certified special education teachers.
Special education teachers at the elementary and pre-school level have the best outlook, with projected growth of 20 percent. Middle school special education teachers are not far behind, at 18 percent. An expected growth for secondary school special education teachers is projected at 13 percent. Many openings will likely derive from turnover and retirements, as well as growth of the school-age population.
Prepare for the TAP with an NLU Workshop
The ILTS Test of Academic Proficiency (TAP) is one of the most important tests on the road to becoming a teacher. NLU offers a series of TAP workshops in critical content areas. All workshops are FREE to NLU applicants and students and open to everyone else for a fee.** Get fully prepared for the TAP and register for a workshop today!
All applicants for the special education master's degree program must meet NLU’s general admission requirements. Refer to the appropriate application checklist.
In addition to NLU’s general admission requirements, applicants to the special education master's degree program must also satisfy the following:
- Passing score on the Test of Academic Proficiency* (taken within the last five years).
- Grade point average of 3.0 or higher for the most recent 60 credit hours. GPA’s lower than 3.0 will be considered for admission on an individual basis.
1 Bureau of Labor Statistics and US News University Directory
2 Director of teacher quality at the National Education Association
* As of February 1, 2012, the Illinois Test of Basic Skills (ITBS) has been replaced by the Test of Academic Proficiency (TAP). Teacher candidates who have passed the ITBS do not have to take the TAP if they apply for certification within 5 years of successfully passing the ITBS. Teacher candidates who have not successfully completed the ITBS must take and pass the TAP prior to admission. Teacher candidates who are not certified within 5 years of taking and passing the ITBS or the TAP will need to repeat the TAP if they have not reached the maximum 5 attempts.
Per ISBE policy, an individual may attempt to pass the TAP a maximum of 5 times. Previous attempts to pass the ITBS do not count toward the limit of 5 attempts to pass the TAP.
**You must be an applicant or student at the time of registration for the workshops to be free. If you pay for a workshop and become an applicant afterward, we can’t provide a refund.