BLV Program Application Process

The BLV (Blindness and Low Vision) offers initial certification in Blindness and Low Vision for both non-certified teachers in Missouri and certified and non-certified teachers in other states.

Missouri Residents

Please refer to the "Application Process" section below for information regarding the application process for this initial certification program.

Non-Missouri Residents

The purpose of the BLV program is to offer initial certification in Birth - Grade 12, Blind/Partially Sighted in the State of Missouri. Students living in other states will be recommended for certification in Missouri once all program requirements (coursework and Missouri Content Assessments (MoCA)) have been completed, regardless of the student's physical address. Once they have acquired certification in the State of Missouri, they would need to follow their state guidelines for requesting a transfer of their certification from Missouri to their home state.

Missouri State University does not guarantee the transferability of this certification to any other state. It is the student’s responsibility to work with the Department of Education in your home state prior to enrollment in coursework to determine the best way to transfer this certification from Missouri to your home state. It should be noted that certification requirements for Blindness and Low Vision may be different in your home state, and transferring this certification from Missouri may require additional coursework or tests.

Master's Degree Option

Students who wish to complete additional coursework beyond the 39 hours in order to complete a Master of Science in Education (MSED) in Special Education need to begin the process by applying to the graduate college. If a candidate thinks he/she might want to pursue the masters degree, it is important to apply before completing 9 hours of BLV graduate coursework. If you haven't applied prior to completion of 9 hours of graduate coursework, any coursework beyond 9 hours will not be counted toward the masters degree. Learn more about the MSED program with an emphasis in BLV.

Application Process

All applicants to the Visually Impaired Program must complete the following process to be admitted:

  • Complete the application to be admitted to Missouri State and to request your Transcript Analysis.
  • Submit a letter of intent indicating your plan to pursue Blindness and Low Vision certification or dual certification with the MSED. This letter must include a discussion of how you will meet the additional practice requirements and direct observation and instructional hours required during the program (see additional requirements below). Also include your knowledge and skills in online learning tools such as blackboard, SKYPE and online chats. Finally, describe why you wish to teach visually impaired students, what skills and abilities you have that would make you a good teacher of visually impaired students, and why you believe you would be a good candidate academically for this program.
  • Complete a MOVECHS FBI national fingerprinting background check. Contact Lisa Monkres at 417-836-4206 for registration instructions for obtaining the fingerprinting.  
  • Submit three letters of reference, including at least one from a present employer and at least one from an individual who can attest to the candidate's academic ability.
  • Apply to the Graduate College at Missouri State (ONLY if you intend to pursue the MSED Degree). Apply online.

All application materials should be submitted to:

Lisa Monkres, Admissions Coordinator
Department of Counseling, Leadership & Special Education
Missouri State University
901 S. National Ave.
Springfield, MO 65897

Students in this program will be required to complete 12 hours of education coursework at ANY College or University that has an approved Teacher Education program, and 24 hours of VI coursework only available online through Missouri State University.

Access a list of the courses required in this program, including course descriptions.