Oct 19, 2021  
2021-2022 Governors State University Academic Catalog 
    
2021-2022 Governors State University Academic Catalog

Multicategorical Special Education, M.A.


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The Master of Arts in Multicategorical Education is now accepting new students. Students interested in adding the LBS1 endorsement onto an existing license may be interested in the four course LBS1 Endorsement Sequence.

The College of Education  graduate major in Multicategorical Special Education prepares individuals to teach in special education settings covering the full range of students encompassed by the Illinois LBS I Unlimited credential, i.e., students with LD, S/ED, ID, PH, traumatic brain injury (TBI), and autism. Graduates of the MCSE program serve across the continuum of services instructional, resource, and including settings and as collaborators/consultants to educators, administrators, staff, and parents.

Licensure/Endorsement

The program is approved by the Illinois State Board of Education and prepares candidates for the Learning Behavior Specialist I Unlimited license.

To be recommended for licensure, the student must present evidence of having passed the examinations required by the Illinois State Board of Education. Currently those include SPED Licensure Content Test 163, LBSI Content Test 155, and edTPA. To earn the LBSI endorsement on a current license, a candidate must pass the LBSI Content Test 155.

Option I: Students Holding a Professional Educator License for Teaching

Students holding a Professional Educators License for Teaching will complete three Practica (SPED - 8400 Special Education Practicum I (1) SPED - 8500 Special Education Practicum II (1) , and  SPED - 8963 Special Education Practicum III (1) ) in lieu of student teaching.

Option II: Students without Teaching License

Students who do not hold a Professional Educator License for Teaching must have a bachelor’s degree and complete SPED - 6999: Student Teaching . Please see an education advisor for further details.

Program Requirements

After meeting the university admission requirements, in order to continue in the program, students must submit to the College of Education a supplemental application packet containing:

  • transcripts showing a cumulative G.P.A. of 2.5 with a 3.0 or higher in content area courses and all grades in graduate course work at a “B” or better;
  • submit a writing sample;
  • for Option I: a valid Illinois or comparable out-of-state Professional Educator License for Teaching;
  • for Option II: candidates must successfully complete the following 9 credit course prerequisites with a C or better: Foundations in Education, Educational Psychology II, and Survey of Students with Exceptionalities;
  • complete FERPA and Mandatory Reporter training; and
  • Criminal background clearance.

After the student has completed SPED-8619  and SPED-8200 , the faculty will review this information and recommend that the student be permitted to continue in the program, continue in the program conditionally, or be dismissed from the program. To receive a recommendation to continue, the student must earn a grade of “B” or better in SPED-8619  and SPED-8200  which must be taken at Governors State University.

Conditional Continuation

The faculty may permit a student to progress conditionally. In such cases, faculty review of the applicant’s record identifies evidence that the student will likely be successful in the program. The status of all students permitted to progress conditionally is reviewed by the faculty each semester, and students are informed in writing of the conditions necessary for them to be transferred to good standing status. When conditions are met, students are informed in writing of the transfer to good standing status. A student may not be admitted to the culminating project without achieving good standing status.

For Option II: Approval for Student Teaching: Students required to student teach must:

  1. complete all professional education requirements maintaining a G.P.A. of 3.0 or higher, with a grade of “B” or better in a graduate level SPED course, and a grade of “C” or better in all other coursework,
  2. have passed the Special Education General Curriculum Test (163) and the Learning Behavior Specialist I Test (155) of the Illinois Licensure Testing System.

Admission to Candidacy

To continue in the program, the student must be accepted as a candidate for the M.A. in Multicategorical Special Education degree after completing SPED-8619 , SPED-8200 , and two additional courses on the approved study plan. Students must submit to the Division of Education Graduate Advising Office an application for candidacy in the semester that they expect to have completed the courses required for candidacy: September 30 for fall term, January 31 for spring term, or May 31 for summer term. Application forms are available via the student portal of the GSU website - College of Education Graduate Programs.

To qualify for candidacy, a student must:

  1. have completed all undergraduate prerequisites for courses on the study plan;
  2. have completed all coursework applicable to the degree with a G.P.A. of 3.0 or higher, with a grade of “B” or better in SPED-8619  and SPED-8200  and with a grade of “C” or better in all other courses;
  3. display, or be judged as developing, the dispositions expected of graduate students as listed in the section Licensure of Teachers and Other School Professionals ; and
  4. be recommended for candidacy by the M.A. in Multicategorical Special Education program faculty.

Further information about candidacy is available in the M.A. in Special Education Student Handbook accessed via the student portal of the GSU website.

Students admitted to candidacy will be assigned to a faculty advisor. Students not admitted to candidacy will be dropped from the program and will not be permitted to register in courses at Governors State University until they have changed their major to a major outside the Division of Education.

Degree Requirements


Students must meet all university requirements for a master’s degree.

In addition, students must:

  1. maintain a G.P.A. of 3.0 or higher, with a grade of “B” or better in SPED-8619  and SPED-8200  and a grade of “C” or better in all other courses;
  2. complete all course work, including transfer credits, within six calendar years.

Students may apply for a maximum of six hours of course credit from other accredited institutions toward the degree requirements, subject to approval by the faculty advisor and the coordinator of the Multicategorical Special Education program.

For Option I:


Students who hold a teaching license

For Option II:


Students seeking the initial license who do not hold an early childhood, elementary, or secondary education license (46 Hours; plus the general education requirements, if necessary)

Director of Special Education Endorsement Coursework


The College of Education at Governors State University offers the following ISBE approved courses for the Director of Special Education Endorsement on an Illinois professional educator license. In order to obtain the endorsement, you must meet the ISBE licensure requirements outlined at www.isbe.net. For more information on the process to obtain this endorsement please contact the program advisor.

LBSI Endorsement


This set of courses are for those with an initial license seeking a subsequent endorsement for LBSI.

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