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University Admission Requirements

A student applying to a master's program must:

  • have earned a four-year bachelor's degree or its equivalent from a college or university that is accredited by the appropriate regional accrediting association, or do so within one academic year
  • present unofficial transcripts from each college or university other than Illinois State at which graduate, undergraduate, or non-degree credit was earned. The unofficial transcript should be easily readable and clearly indicate degree(s) awarded, courses and course grades for each term. If accepted, official transcripts can be emailed from the university to or mailed in a sealed envelope to: Illinois State University, Graduate School, 209 Hovey Hall, Campus Box 4040, Normal, IL 61790-4040.

International students can learn more about specific application requirements by visiting the Office of Admissions.

Additional Program Admission Requirements

A student applying to this master’s program must meet the following requirements.


You must have a minimum 3.0 GPA (on a scale in which an A is a 4.0) for the last 60 hours of undergraduate work (approximately the junior and senior years). If there is any graduate-level coursework, that must also be a minimum of 3.0 on a 4.0 scale 

Certification or License

You must have an existing or pending state certification or license to teach English language arts (ELA); applicants should supply one of the following: 

  • a copy of their current state certification or license to teach ELA
  • proof that they have applied for a state certification or license to teach ELA
  • official confirmation that they are in the final semester of a program that will lead to their successful ability to apply for a state certificate or license to teach ELA


Include a two-page statement articulating your professional goals and how this graduate degree will help you achieve those goals.

Letters of Recommendation

Submit name and email addresses of two letters of recommendation from school leadership (e.g., principal, curriculum coordinator, department chair, instructional coach) or someone who can speak with first-hand knowledge about your strength as an ELA teacher and readiness for the work of studying your own classroom practice within the online application.

Instructional Artifact

Submit a sample lesson plan or other instructional artifact that evidences your commitment to or your eagerness to learn more about socially just ELA teaching through your enrollment in the degree program. You may, if you wish, include a one-page reflection that explains how you think this artifact speaks to your socially just ELA teaching or desire for ongoing professional learning through the degree program. For further advisement about this artifact, please refer to the program's "Tips for Preparing to Apply".

International Applicants

An international applicant may be better to explore the TESOL area of interest within the master's degree in English.

If you're an international student and meet the above criteria, you are required to submit English Proficiency scores. The minimum TOEFL score required for graduate admissions is 100 TOEFL ibt or 7.0 on IELTS.

Global Access to Online Degree Programs

When applying, international students applying to a fully online program must agree to our international online and hybrid programs disclosure and disclaimer statements. Due to limited on-campus courses, immigration documentation cannot be issued for students seeking F-1 or J-1 status.

Admission Dates and Deadlines

Term Application Deadline
Fall  preferred by May 1; thereafter applications will be reviewed on a rolling basis as space permits. 
Spring  preferred by November 1; thereafter applications will be reviewed on a rolling basis as space permits. 
Summer  preferred by April 1; thereafter applications will be reviewed on a rolling basis as space permits. 

Graduate Coordinator

Name Office Email Phone
Dr. Maggie Morris Davis  Stevenson Hall 421P  (309) 438-3518