The University of Arizona offers a graduate-level program leading to a specialization in teaching children who are visually impaired: TVI, or Teacher of Students with Visual Impairments.
Nationally recognized for excellence, this program prepares individuals to provide services in this challenging and rewarding profession. Our graduates are successfully employed in school districts, special schools, and agencies in Arizona as well as in other states across the country. Financial assistance is often available to students enrolled in this program.
The Department of Disability and Psychoeducational Studies is committed to research about and teaching of students with disabilities and special abilities. The department’s research, teaching, and service address current issues in special education, rehabilitation, school psychology, and deaf studies.
The Department of Disability and Psychoeducational Studies (DPS) is dedicated to advancing human and economic development through the empowerment and effective inclusion of culturally diverse individuals with disabilities and special abilities of all ages. This is accomplished by conducting research to further knowledge and understanding of abilities, disabilities, adaptations, interventions, and support systems; preparing professionals to educate and facilitate the development of individuals with disabilities and special abilities; and providing leadership at the local, state, national, and international levels. To accomplish our mission, the department offers nationally recognized undergraduate, master's, educational specialist, and doctoral-level degrees to prepare teachers, counselors, specialists, administrators, school psychologists, school counselors, and researchers and educators in special education, rehabilitation, school psychology, gifted education, sign language and deaf studies, and educational interpreting.
The Graduate College requires an Application for Admission submitted online, along with an application fee.
The department requires the following documents to be submitted through your online application:
· Two Official Transcripts of all previous college work from each college or university previously attended being sent Attention: Cecilia Carlon at the College of Education at P.O. Box 210069, Tucson, AZ 85721-0069. You are also welcome to bring official copies to Room 414 at the College of Education.
· International students must provide a TOEFL score of minimum 79, and scores cannot be older than two years. The institutional code for the University of Arizona is 4832.
· Three letters of recommendation from persons who have direct knowledge of your academic and/or professional performance and potential for graduate study. These letters should be recent. It is preferable to have letters of recommendation that are specific to admission to our program and your recommenders will be able to upload letters through this venue. (Look for instructions below)
· Autobiographical essay (1-2 pages, double spaced) that describes:
o how the applicant's professional, educational, and life experiences have influenced the desire to pursue graduate studies in the area of Behavior Support.
o the applicant's career goals and how graduate study would contribute to their realization, and
o the applicant's goals and objectives for graduate study
o the autobiographical essay has the option to be uploaded (look for instructions below)
Your application will be considered once you have submitted all required documentation. Incomplete applications will not be reviewed and will be automatically denied. Once your application has been submitted, you may check the status of your application at any time by logging in to this account and opening this application. Please do not call the department regarding the status of your application. You will be notified via email as soon as a decision has been reached.
GRE scores not required
*International Students Only
Minimum TOEFL: 79 (IBT) 550 (PB) or
Minimum IELTS: Composite score of 7 (no subject area below a 6)
Please review our English Proficiency Requirement list to verify your need to submit an English proficiency test.
Contact the UA Financial Aid Office for information about applying for financial aid.
Contact the program advisor or program faculty for funding available within the program.
Domestic Applicants: Fall admission February 15
Spring Admission: September 1
International Applicants: Fall admission - December 1
Spring Admission: June 1
3705 for Major
The Special Education VISP requires a minimum of 36 units to graduate with the Special Education Master’s Degree. Completion of the student teaching requirement and some additional units are required to receive recommendation for an Arizona Department of Education Teaching Certificate in the area of specialization.
Core Course Requirements
SERP 502 Behavior Principles and Disability
SERP 504 Cultural and Linguistic Diversity in Exceptional Learners
SERP 556 Research Methods in Education
SERP 593 Student Teaching
SERP 515 Assessment & Instruction: Learners with Low Incidence Disabilities
SERP 520 Low Vision and Visual Functioning
SERP 519B Assistive Technology for People with Visual Impairments
SERP 521 Introduction to Visual Impairments and Deaf-Blindness
SERP 523A Braille I
SERP 523B Braille II
SERP 522 Orientation & Mobility for Teachers of Individuals with Visual Impairments
SERP 524 Methods of Teaching the Visually Impaired
SERP 593 (8 units) Internship
Electives and SEI requirements
SERP 400 Survey of Exceptionality (if not taken previously)