The Reading Specialist Certificate requires the applicant to be a certified teacher who already holds a Masters degree (in any field). The Reading Specialist Certificate differs from the Master of Arts in Reading along two dimensions:
a. Applicants may credit any number of previous, successful and relevant graduate courses towards obtaining the Reading Specialist Certificate, even if this previous coursework has been used to obtain a graduate degree. This cannot be done with the Master of Arts in Reading. Course credits are negotiated with advisors once an applicant is formally enrolled in the program.
b. Only 30 credit hours are required (ELRS 503, Methods of Research, and READ 505, Seminar in Reading Research, are not required courses in the Reading Specialist Certificate program). The Master of Arts in Reading requires 33 credits hours and that students take ELRS 503, Methods of Research, and READ 505, Seminar in Reading Research.
North Central Association of Colleges and Schools, The Higher Learning Commission