Secondary Education of Students Who Are Deaf or Hard of Hearing MS

Graduate Admissions Counselor

Alisha Joslyn-Swob

Department Contact

Gerald Bateman, Program Director
585-475-6780, gcbnmp

Admission Deadlines & Requirements

Program Available Online? No
Application Deadline Rolling
Admit Term Fall
Entrance Exam GRE
English Language Exams:
TOEFL (Internet) 79-80
PTE Academic 58


Priority deadline - COMPLETE applications that are received by this date are given priority consideration for admission and financial aid (if applicable). Applications received after the priority deadline will be considered on a space-available basis.

Rolling - There is no specific deadline for applications; applications will be accepted and reviewed throughout the year until the program reaches capacity.

Program overview

The MS degree in secondary education of students who are deaf or hard of hearing prepares students to meet the national need for teachers of secondary students who are deaf or hard of hearing. The program prepares teachers as effective and ethical practitioners and also as scholars and leaders in the profession.

Faculty members are international leaders in research and are highly skilled in the education of deaf people. A carefully designed system of faculty advisement is a prominent feature of the program. On-campus facilities, state-of-the-art technology, and a well-established system of educational access services combine to make this a vital program for both deaf and hearing students who desire careers as professional educators of deaf students.

Plan of study

Course work requires a minimum of four semesters. A cumulative GPA of at least 3.0 must be maintained. Before graduation, students are expected to have at least intermediate-level signing skills as determined by a Sign Language Proficiency Interview.


Secondary education for students who are deaf or hard of hearing, MS degree, typical course sequence

Course Sem. Cr. Hrs.
First Year
MSSE-700 History of Deaf Educational Thought and Practice 3
MSSE-701 Psychology and Human Development 3
MSSE-703 Special Education in the Social Context 3
MSSE-704 Teaching Deaf Learners with Special Educational Needs 3
MSSE-710 General Instructional Methods 3
MSSE-712 Practicum 2
MSSE-715 Issues in Mainstream Education 3
MSSE-725 Structures of ASL and English 3
MSSE-726 Language Acquisition and Learning 3
MSSE-727 ASL in Instructional Delivery 3
MSSE-785 Foundations of Educational Research 3
Second Year
MSSE-702 Educational and Cultural Diversity 3
MSSE-713 Assessment Principles and Practices 3
MSSE-714 Curriculum Content and Methods of Instruction 3
MSSE-722 Educational Audiology and Spoken Language Development 3
MSSE-728 Literacy and the Deaf Adolescent 3
MSSE-760 Student Teaching I* 6
MSSE-761 Student Teaching II* 6
MSSE-790 Professional Portfolio 3
MSSE-794 Inquiry in Teaching (elective) (3)
Total Semester Credit Hours 62

* Students are required to complete a minimum of 250 hours of supervised student teaching, working with deaf and hard-of-hearing students at the secondary (7–12) grade level. In addition, 100 hours of field experience must be completed before the first student teaching placement.

Admission requirements

To be considered for admission to the MS program in secondary education of students who are deaf or hard of hearing, candidates must fulfill the following requirements:

  • Complete a graduate application,
  • Hold a baccalaureate degree from an accredited college or university,
  • Have a cumulative grade point average of 3.0 or higher,
  • Submit official transcripts (in English) of all previously completed undergraduate and graduate course work,
  • Have a basic knowledge of American Sign Language as measured by a departmental skill assessment, or willingness to take American Sign Language I (or its equivalent) at NTID or another college prior to beginning the program,
  • Have a level of writing proficiency appropriate to graduate study as indicated by a review of undergraduate writing-intensive courses and an expository essay,
  • Submit letters of reference and an expository essay that indicates evidence of professional commitment and potential for success in the program,
  • Submit scores from Graduate Record Exam (GRE), and
  • Participate in an individual interview.
  • International applicants whose native language is not English must submit scores from the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL). Minimum scores of 550 (paper-based) or 213 (internet-based) are required.

Additionally, 30 semester credit hours in a content area are required by the New York State Education Department for initial certification to teach a secondary (grades 7–12) content area. Students who do not have the required number of hours must complete the additional credits before applying for New York State certification. Secondary academic subjects include American Sign Language, English, mathematics, social studies, or science. Please note: The social studies content area includes economics and government, and at least 21 semester hours in the history and geography of the United States and the world.

Additional information

Financial Aid

NTID graduate tuition rates are less than one-half of RIT’s tuition. Approximately 70 percent of students enrolled in the MS program in secondary education receive some type of financial assistance each year. Students complete only the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) to apply for financial aid. In addition, federal loan programs may be available.

Career Outcomes

The RIT Office of Career Services and Cooperative Education website provides information pertaining to student skills and capabilities, salary data, career information, job outcomes, and contact information for the Career Services Coordinator by program.

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