College of Education and Rehabilitation
Department of Blindness and Low Vision Programs
Students gain hands-on instruction and laboratory practice (using low vision simulators and blindfolds) in the methods and adaptive techniques.
Professional Preparation Programs For Teachers of Children with Visual and Multiple Disabilities
Master of Education and
Salus University College of Education and Rehabilitation offers a Master of Education degree program and a certificate program for Teachers of Children who are Blind or Visually Impaired. These competency-based programs offer coursework and practical experiences that develop the necessary knowledge and skills required for the instruction of infants, children, and youth, ages birth to 21, who are totally blind or visually impaired and those with multiple disabilities.
Students successfully completing the curriculum are prepared for certification by their state credentialing body. Both programs are offered for part and full-time study, with coursework primarily online during the fall and spring semesters, and a 4 week summer residency at Salus University for one summer. Students can begin their studies during one of three semesters. A part-time student can complete the program in 7 semesters, including a 12 week internship (student teaching) and a full-time student can finish in 4 semesters, depending on the number of courses taken each semester.
Students who are already graduates of one of Salus’ other vision related programs in the College of Education and Rehabilitation can complete an internal application to the certificate program without having to reapply to Salus. Since they have already taken many of the core courses, they can complete the program by only taking a limited number of courses.
Students who do not wish to receive a degree from the program can take up to nine credit hours as a non-degree student at Salus, with approval of the Program Director. They need not apply to the program, but must contact the Program Director with a plan of studies.
Individuals entering the programs must meet the minimum requirements of the College of Education and Rehabilitation (see the Admissions requirements) and the Pennsylvania Department of Education. A background in education is not required.. Persons who enter the programs without special education certification are required to take additional coursework at Salus; however, they do not need to take additional courses to be considered for admission into the program.
Teacher of the Visually Impaired
Upon completion of the program, the Pennsylvania Commonwealth requires that the applicant take the appropriate PRAXIS II examination in Visual Impairments. Requirements change from time to time, and should be verified with the Educational Testing Service at the time of completion of the degree program. Applicants from other states do not have to take the Praxis II, but must take their required state examination for licensure.
Applicants to the Teacher of the Visually Impaired program must submit copies of current Pennsylvania and federal background clearances at the time of application to the program. Applicants from states outside of Pennsylvania are required to submit the educational clearances required in their specific state.
Students accepted into either program who have a minimum entering grade point average of 3.0 and are citizens of the United States may qualify for tuition scholarships. Since these scholarships are funded by the Unites States Office of Special Education (OSEP), they are required to “pay back” their scholarship through years of service in the field of special education.
Student learn teaching strategies to assist individuals who are visually impaired.
Course Sequence and Prerequisites
Applicants must submit all applicant materials in order to be considered for admission to programs. Upon completion, they are interviewed, either in person or by telephone, by faculty.
Once accepted, the program director and the student will jointly plan a program of studies which will accommodate either full or part-time status, and which will ensure appropriate course sequencing and integration. Some courses have prerequisites which must be taken into account in planning the program of studies. Students may enroll during any semester. The internship (student teaching) is the last course which students complete (See Course Descriptions). Faculty will make every effort to plan an internship experience as close to the student’s home as possible.
Those individuals who wish to receive the Master of Education degree in addition to certification as a Teacher of the Visually Impaired are required to complete an additional course in Research and a Comprehensive Examination. Students can transfer from the Certificate to the master’s degree program while enrolled as a student at Salus.