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Special Education Application Information

The Department of Special Education offers an undergraduate field-based professional licensure preparation program designed to prepare teacher candidates to work with individuals with varying disabilities including: learning disabilities, social or emotional disorders, cognitive disabilities, physical disabilities and other health impairments, autism and traumatic brain injury. 

Admission Requirements:

  • Successful completion of the COMP I requirement by term of entry.
  • Applicants must have at least a 2.75 Illinois and cumulative GPA at the time of application (3.0 or higher is highly recommended).
  • Two years of one language other than English in high school or through the second level course in college by term of entry.
  • Completion of a Quantitative Reasoning I or II General Education course
  • Special Education Hours Verification form: Verification of a minimum of 50 hours of experience with individuals with disabilities is required. At least 20 of these 50 hours must be completed post high school. The experiences may include time in community work, social services, and/or schools. This form should be filled out as you complete your application. Please submit one form for each different experience.

Highly Recommended:

  • EDUC 201
  • EDUC 202
  • EPSY 201
  • SPED 117

Students with the best essays and the best academic and professional qualifications, including any pertinent extracurricular activities will receive highest priority. One way to demonstrate interest is to have earned a grade of “B” or better in introductory courses such as EDUC 201, EDUC 202, SPED 117 and EPSY 201.  

Meeting the minimum GPA and the completion of prerequisite coursework does not guarantee admission into any major.

After Admission:

Students admitted into a teacher education program will be required to attend a mandatory meeting regarding the program and its requirements. Time, date, and location of the mandatory meeting will be provided after admission.

Students in teaching licensure programs must maintain a C- or better in ALL content and professional education coursework. 

The University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign requires field placement in school districts as part of various educational curricula and licensure programs. Illinois school districts are required by state law to conduct criminal background checks on applicants for licensed and non-licensed positions with a school district. School districts are requiring that applicants for field placements be subjected to a criminal background check prior to placement in the school districts. Certain convictions are a bar to employment with a school district and are fully set out in the Illinois School Code, 105 ILCS 5/10-21.9, as amended. All convictions will be reviewed for compatibility with placement in a school district.

As part of this application, you will be required to consent to a criminal background check including submission of your fingerprints. Failure to consent to the background check will result in your not being able to complete a public school certification program and in the cancellation of any admission to the program. For further information on this requirement, call the Council on Teacher Education at (217) 333-2804.

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