The preparation of reading professionals is achieved through the M. Ed. with a reading specialist concentration. Graduate candidates completing 30 semester hours of the M.Ed./ Reading Specialist concentration qualify for Reading Specialist Certification granted by the Pennsylvania Department of Education. The requirements for the program stem from the guidelines established by the Professional Standards and Ethics Committee of the International Reading Association found in Standards for Reading Professionals: Revised (2003 and 2010). In addition to the IRA Standards, the program is also aligned with the Pennsylvania Department of Education standards. All state, national, and professional program standards are aligned within the conceptual framework, course syllabi, assignments, assessments, and field experiences.
The master's degree program in education is accredited by the National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education (NCATE). This program encourages students to view themselves as researchers of teaching and learning and as professionals whose continued growth can best be met through inquiry, reflection, and sustained dialogues with peers. It affords practitioners the opportunity to share effective classroom practices while reading, interpreting, and analyzing current research and professional literature. Students must choose and complete course requirements within a specified concentration area, such as reading specialist.
Candidates pursuing a M.Ed. with a reading specialist concentration are required to complete a total of 30 semester hours of required courses with a cumulative grade-point average of 3.00/4.00. Twelve semester hours must satisfy core competencies that consist of courses in Research, Pedagogy, Curriculum, and Professional Seminar. Specialization courses (twelve semester hours) focus on developing specific knowledge of research and practices in literacy processes, literacy coaching, assessment, content reading strategies, reading pedagogy, reading specialist and literacy coaching program organization. The capstone courses, Practicum I: Assessment and Practicum II: Instruction, include six semester hours of supervised clinical experience with literacy learners grades Pre-K to 8.
National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education