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How to become a Teacher of the Visually Impaired

There are currently two programs in Canada that offer a specialization program for becoming a qualified Teacher of the Visually Impaired (TVI).  Both are graduate programs in which the successful applicants work towards obtaining a Master's degree.  Applicants are required to have a Bachelor's degree in Education (B.Ed.) in order to be considered for admission into either of these programs, however this requirement may be waived under extenuating circumstances.

Mount Saint Vincent University (MSVU), Halifax, Nova Scotia

This two-year program involves 5.5 units of coursework, some of which are completed during two mandatory residential summer sessions.  The rest of the coursework is conducted on-line, by teleconference and via practicum.  MSVU operates this program in conjunction with the Atlantic Provinces Special Education Authority (APSEA) and as such, the summer sessions are held at APSEA's main headquarters in Halifax, Nova Scotia.  Students should be aware that practicum opportunities could involve travel which would be the responsibility of the student.  A new program begins every two years, with the next program beginning in May of 2014.

University of British Columbia (UBC), Vancouver, British Columbia

This program involves a mixture of residential study sessions and on-line correspondence sessions.  Successful applicants are required to complete three, six-week residential summer sessions and four semesters of on-line correspondence courses.  Two streams are available to applicants: Master's of Arts in Special Education, Concentration in Visual Impairment, or Master's of Education in Special Education, Concentration in Visual Impairment.  The M.A. stream requires the completion of a Master's thesis as well as a field experience component, while the M.Ed. stream requires the completion of a major project as well as a field experience component.

UBC TVI Flyer

UBC Course Outline

In addition to the above programs, there are many post-secondary institutions in both the United States and around the world that offer a variety of specialization programs in vision.  These programs vary in cost, duration, content and quality.  Click on the following link to view an extensive listing of these programs on the Texas School for the Blind's website.

How to become a certified Braille Transcriber

Please click on this link to read the CNIB Library information sheet about the braille courses that they offer

Please click on this link to view the CNIB 2008 fee schedule for braille courses

How to become a certified Orientation and Mobility Instructor

The University of British Columbia is now offering an Orientation and Mobility Program through their Faculty of Education.  This program is geared specifically towards Teachers of Students with Visual Impairments and begins in July of 2012. 
Please click here for more information on this exciting new program!

In addition to the above programs, there are many post-secondary institutions in both the United States and around the world that offer a variety of specialization programs in Orientation and Mobility.  These programs vary in cost, duration, content and quality.  Click on the following link to view an extensive listing of these programs on the Texas School for the Blind's website.

How to become a qualified Educational Assistant

Several Alberta post-secondary institutions now offer educational or teacher assistant training programs of varying lengths.  Please visit the OCCInfo site for more information on each of these programs.