FIRST YEARS > Instructions for Applying Online

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Admissions note: FIRST YEARS is not  accepting applications. If you have questions regarding the program, please contact Kathryn Wilson, Program Director,  at
Before you apply ...
Before beginning to fill out the FIRST YEARS application, please read the mentorship experience description very carefully.  This experience is a required part of the certificate.  It is not optional.  It is very important that you and your employer realize that the time spent away from your setting will make you a better teacher, therapist or interventionist.  We ask that in her/his letter of recommendation, your employer refer to this commitment and his/her support of the mentorship experience.   The mentorship sites are assigned to students based on several factors -- availability of a willing and qualified mentor, location, and convenience for the student.  We cannot guarantee a specific setting to any student. 

FIRST YEARS provides an online application form, via ApplyYourself,  for students wishing to enter the Certificate in Auditory Learning for Young Children with Hearing Loss program.

Supported browsers:  Internet Explorer 7, 8 & 9 (Windows), Firefox 3.6 & 7 (Mac), Firefox 3 and 7 (Windows), Chrome 12 (Windows and Mac), Safari 4 & 5 (Mac), and Safari 5 (Windows), (Macintosh users - OS X).
Recall that to qualify,  you must 1) hold a baccalaureate degree in one of the following fields -- deaf education, audiology, speech-language pathology, early childhood special education or special education, 2) hold a license in the state of residence, and 3) have at least two years of experience in the field. Preference is given to those professionals with an active case load of children, birth - 8 years.

To complete your online application submission, you must have:

  1. a current email address;
  2. $85 application fee (non-refundable, payable by credit card (Visa/MasterCard) or check/money order);
  3. a "statement of purpose"* and (optional) résumé* to upload to your application;
  4. names and email addresses of 2 recommenders; and
  5. transcripts* from all post-secondary schools.
    * Acceptable upload formats:  .doc, .wpd, .rtf, .xls, .pdf, .docx, .xlsx or .txt (If you use a word processing application that creates another file format, save your document as Rich Text Format.) Recommended maximum file size: 600 KB
There are two items to mail/fax in to the Student Services Manager for the certificate:
  1. Mail or fax in the proof(s) of licensure.
  2. Mail or arrange to have your school(s) mail in the official transcripts.
Application Instructions
Good ideaPrint out these instructions to have for convenient reference while applying online.
Step One: Create an account
To apply to the FIRST YEARS Certificate in Auditory Learning for Young Children with Hearing Loss, you will first need to create an account, requiring your name, email address, date of birth (format - mm/dd/yyyy), and password. 
The password you create must be at least 8 characters long and include at least one digit (0-9) and only alphabetic characters (a-z, A-Z).
A PIN (personal identification number) is returned to you on screen and in a separate email. You will be using it and your password to log on to complete the application.
Good ideaSecure your PIN and password, as well as the emailed information, for future reference.
Step Two: Note all special instructions before proceeding.
1. As you proceed through the application sections (described below), make sure you click the "Save" or "Save & Continue" buttons located at the top or bottom right of every page in the application. Move from one section to another using the navigation buttons provided on each screen: Using the "Back" browser button is not recommended.
make sure you click the Save button

2. Read the instructions.Read the instructions, including the instruction tab reading "Uploading a Transcript." 

Note: Unoffical transcripts are uploaded in the online application. You will need to contact your schools for official transcripts. Instructions on submitting official transcripts will be included as part of the admission offer.
3. Application Fee: Be aware that an application will not be processed until the application fee is paid. Thus, we recommend paying as soon as you decide to apply, i.e. not after your submit your application for the final processing. This will speed your enrollment upon acceptance. Payment options include online credit cards or check/money order sent to The Graduate School.

submitting4. You can complete your application over multiple sessions. After you formally submit, however, you cannot change your applicationThus, please double-check all sections of your application before submitting.  However, after submission, you may still check the response status of your recommendation providers (and send them reminders) and admission decisions. 

Step Three: Take an advance look at the online application program
navigation sidebar
There are several "pages" to complete the application. Some entries on the online application are red-starred * as required.  You can select categories to complete, or skip them until later, by clicking on the navigation sidebar, as seen below.

You can return to the application to complete it in multiple sessions. But, once submitted, you cannot change your application. Again, double-check your application before submitting.

  • Applicant Information
    • Applicant Type
      • Level of Study* = Certificate or Post Bacc Licensure Programs 
      • Type of Applicant* = New Applicant 
    • Plans for Graduate Study
      • Select a major* = Cert/Post Bacc Licensure 
      • Select a degree*NA
      • Area of Interest or Specialization* = "Speech and Hearing Sciences"
      • Please select the term of entry* - fall, 2013
    • Graduate School Instructions

    • Note: There are no financial awards associated with the FIRST YEARS certificate.
    • Applicant Information, including name, address
      • Residency
    • Educational History
      • Use Country and abbreviated State (e.g. CO not Colorado) to search for school codes.
      Note: When you save & continue on this, it goes to "Transcript Uploads." You can upload them at this time, or skip on to the next category, "Statement of Purpose"
    • Statement of Purpose - required
    • Test Scores - not required for FIRST YEARS
    • Work and Volunteer Experience
  • Supplemental Documents - include proofs of licensure scans here
  • Community Standards - honor code, etc.
  • Recommendations - 2 letters of recommendation are required.
  • Check your application
    • If incomplete, the sections requiring completion will show up as links. You may sign in at later times to complete these sections.
    • If complete, you will be given a verification and electronic signature option for final submission (as seen below).

Note: If you encounter any problems with the application, please contact us at

Good ideaAfter you formally submit, you cannot change your application. Thus, please double-check all sections of your application before submitting. There is one exception: If you need to change the recommenders for any reason, you may do so. Contact Seletha Shaw, as below, if you need more information on this.

    MyUNC submit
Step Four: Apply for Admission
Now that you have read the instructions, you are ready to apply online! 
First, go to
Second, create your account.
Third, pay your application fee.
Next, proceed through the application pages until all is complete for submission.
ready to apply online
Good ideaBookmark the portal address for future access. -

Step Five: Send in proofs of licensure and official transcripts
Mail or fax in your proofs of licensure and official transcripts to Seletha Shaw, as below.

Feel free to contact:

Bobby WorldWide Approved 508
Alexander Graham Bell Association | UNC-CH Division of Speech and Hearing Sciences

© FIRST YEARS, Last update: January 2013, Maintained by FIRST YEARS Webmaster