Students who major in special education in the learning behavior specialist I emphasis or the vision impairments emphasis are required to meet the Illinois licensure requirements including 29-41 semester hours of general education classes which must include 3 semester hours of cultural diversity course work. Transfer students with an A.A. or A.S. degree also must meet these requirements for educator licensure. Students who successfully complete the program requirements will have completed all required ISBE and CAEP standards for educator licensure.
Emphasis 1. Learning Behavior Specialist I
To be admitted to teacher education in Emphasis 1, Learning Behavior Specialist I, individuals who have earned the Associate of Arts in Teaching (A.A.T.) in Special Education must provide evidence of passing the Illinois Test of Academic Proficiency and have a minimum transfer GPA of 2.50, including grades of C or better in A.A.T. professional special education courses. The A.A.T. must include courses in Language Development and Introduction to Foundations of Reading. Students transferring to NIU with an A.A.T. in Special Education, who intend to pursue the Learning Behavior Specialist I program, must contact the undergraduate academic adviser no later than one year prior to admission to NIU. Failure to do so may result in a delay of registration for the initial block sequence of courses leading to the LBS I educator license.
To remain a major in special education, students must earn a grade of C or better in SESE 240, ETR 434, SESE 375, SESE 420, SESE 435, SESE 440, SESE 445, SESE 452, SESE 454, and SESE 455. In addition, students must earn a grade of S in the clinical courses SESE 260, SESE 466, SESE 467, and SESE 468. Early clinical experiences in special education must equal a minimum of 100 contact hours. Students who do not meet these requirements must retake the course(s).
This emphasis leads to Illinois educator licensure as a learning behavior specialist I.
Emphasis 2. Vision Impairments
Emphasis 2 leads to Illinois educator licensure in the area of blind and visually impaired. To be admitted into the teacher education program in Vision Impairments, students must have a minimum cumulative NIU GPA of 2.50 and must have successfully completed the ICTS Test of Academic Proficiency. To remain in the program, students must maintain a minimum cumulative GPA of 2.50.