Visual Impairment Program

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Licensure Programs

The Visually Impaired Program at New Mexico State University is designed to prepare professionals to serve the academic needs of children and youths who are blind or visually impaired. This Program enables students to acquire certification as a teacher of the visually impaired (TVI) with an option for completing a Master of Education (MEd) degree in a unique distance learning model. Presently, there is a substantial demand for certified professionals to serve these needs of this population locally, regionally, and nationally. Positions far exceed the number of qualified personnel available to fill them.

Courses are offered through a “hybrid” model that incorporates both web-based and occasional campus-based instruction. All of the TVI courses are offered on-line with at least one weekend workshop per course per term. The TVI student internship is 350 hours of direct teaching that includes supervised clinical experience and is arranged on a case-by-case basis. Upon completion of the program, students are eligible for New Mexico certification as a TVI (required by law to serve the needs of school-aged children).

Scholarships are available from the New Mexico School for the Visually Impaired.

Technology Requirements:

In order to be a successful student in this program you must be computer literate. A few of the skills that you will be expected to know are how to create a MS Word document, send and open attachments, open PowerPoint presentations, search web sites, and open links. Each of the courses vary in the type and amount of multimedia utilized. Because of this, there may be additional downloads required in order to fully access the features of the course such as Java Script, Adobe Acrobat Reader, Windows Media Player, PowerPoint Viewers, Flash, etc. Most of this software can be installed as free downloads.

Other General Computer/Technical Requirements:

  • Intel/AMD 1.5GHz processor or better
  • 2 GB RAM or more
  • It is highly recommended that you have a high speed connection, either through cable or DSL. A dial-up modem may not have enough bandwidth (power from your line) to see and open images.
  • Windows XP/Windows 7 operating system or newer
  • Internet Explorer 9.0 or 7.0 or Firefox 20.0 web browser
  • Valid email account

Degree and Certification Options:


  • Single Certification-Teacher of the Visually Impaired (TVI) – New Mexico State Teaching Certification for Teachers of the Visually Impaired- TVIs serve the educational and academic support needs of children who are blind or visually impaired in all types of learning environments (e.g., public schools).


  • Master of Education (Med) – Individuals acquiring a MEd degree in Special Education with certification as a TVI tend to continue their employment in school districts and agencies serving individuals who are blind or visually impaired.

Visual Impairment Program Application Process

Director Name and Contact Info:

Loana Mason, Ed.D., COMS
New Mexico State University
PO Box 30001
Las Cruces, NM 88003-8001