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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. International students must have a TOEFL score of at least 79 iBT; the minimum acceptable IELTS score is 6.5 band.

Additional Program Admission Requirements

A student applying to this program must:

  • have a cumulative GPA of 3.0 on a 4.0 scale for either the last 60 hours of your undergraduate coursework or any previous work in a graduate program.
  • Upload a personal essay addressing the following prompts: What is your personal philosophy on Child Life? Why are you interested in the field of Child Life? What are your personal strengths and areas for growth? Describe your experience working with children and families in a variety of settings.
  • Provide names and email addresses for three references; two references should be from an academic source and one should indicate direct experience with children.
  • Upload a document showing proof of at least 50 hours of hospital experience, preferably including contact with Child Life
  • Submit a resume

Priority Application

Applications received by our Priority Submission Date of February 15th for Fall admissions will receive primary consideration for acceptance into our high-demand areas and offers for financial assistance including graduate assistantships.

Admission Dates and Deadlines

Term Application Deadline
Fall (August)  Continuous Review 

Graduate Coordinator

Name Office Email Phone
Dr. Keri Edwards, CCLS  Turner 203B  (309) 438-2648