Master of Arts in Special Education for Certified Teachers Admission Requirements

Admission Requirements

All candidates seeking admission to the Master of Arts in Special Education for Certified Teachers program must:
  • Have a valid Illinois professional educator license (early childhood, elementary, secondary, or preschool-age 21)
  • One or more years of teaching experience in a PreK-12 setting and current district employment
  • Pass the Illinois Basic Skills Test, TAP Test of Academic Proficiency or have an ACT Plus Writing composite score of 22 or higher.

Admission Process

  1. A completed Graduate Application for Admission
  2. Transcripts (official, sealed in envelope) for all prior college and/or university credit. Aurora University accepts official electronic transcripts at
  3. Bachelor's degree from a regionally accredited institution with an average GPA of 3.0 on a 4.0 scale. If your grade point average is below that of a 3.0, you may be accepted on a probationary basis. If probationary status is granted, a formal review will be conducted by the program director after completion of the first three courses, in which a 3.0 average must be maintained or you will not be able to continue the program.
  4. Two letters of recommendation from individuals familiar with your professional potential related to this field
  5. Pass a National Background Check (Criminal Activity and Sex Offender); completed after admission.

Prerequisite Course Requirements

  • a course in human development, spanning the P-12 grade years
  • a course in educational psychology

Please note that if a deficiency exists, completion of undergraduate courses will not be counted toward the MASE. degree.  However, candidates can take a CLEP test to show proficiency.

Application Deadline and Notification

Applications will be reviewed by the special education admission committee, and applicants will be advised of acceptance on a rolling basis as they are reviewed. Applicants should please note that this program is designed for a Fall semester start.

Academic Standards and Evaluation in the MASE Program

In addition to feedback to students in the form of grades, full-time candidates' overall performance will be reviewed at the end of each semester (part-time candidates' work will be reviewed every two semesters) to evaluate whether the applicants are integrating the theoretical knowledge and practical applications at a competent level. At the graduate level, a "C" grade indicates less than complete mastery of the content and methods of the course. A 3.0 grade point average must be maintained to continue in the program. Only two grades of "C" are accepted at the graduate level in the M.A.S.E. program. If a candidate receives a "C" grade within the first semester, the candidate may be removed from the program by action of the program faculty. As is true of admission to the program, candidates may be allowed to continue on a probationary status at the discretion of their advisor and the program director. Candidates must achieve a "B" grade in the Unified Field Experience to be eligible for the internship or student teaching. Additionally, candidates must pass the two state special education content area tests and the Assessment of Professional Teaching test before beginning their internship or student teaching. A grade of "B" or better must be achieved in the internship or student teaching courses to become certified.