Improve outcomes for students struggling with reading
You can be a leader in the field of educational literacy with Carlow’s Master of Education Reading Specialist degree. The reading specialist certification and MEd programs lead to Pre-K-12 Pennsylvania Department of Education Reading Specialist Certification with a special Carlow dyslexia certificate.
As a reading specialist or literacy coordinator, you’ll learn to provide whole class, small group and tiered intervention support to students in all aspects of literacy instruction.
You’ll study how children learn to read with courses centered on the science of reading and examine different approaches to effective literacy assessment and instruction.
Coursework includes an examination of phonological awareness, the structure of language, teaching writing and digital literacy. The curriculum meets guidelines for the Pennsylvania Department of Education’s framework for the reading specialist, the International Literacy Association (ILA) and the International Dyslexia Association (IDA). Students will benefit from on-site practicums at Carlow’s Campus Laboratory School or regional schools and districts.
Special workshops and guest speakers are a hallmark of the program through partnerships with Trying Together, Children’s Museum of Pittsburgh, Fred Rogers Institute, Allegheny Intermediate Unit, Pittsburgh Public Schools, Provident Charter School, PBIDA, Warhol Museum and A+ Schools.
Structured literacy and IDA focus
Faculty instructors who serve as national LETRS (Language Essentials for Teachers of Reading and Spelling) trainers
Partnerships with regional schools that enhance professional development
If you already have a teaching license, you can earn this MEd under our add-on certificate option. When applying, indicate your interest in the add-on certificate option.
Graduate Certificate in Reading Specialist (Pre-K-12)
This program is available as a graduate certificate which leads to an endorsement from PDE for already licensed teachers.
Career opportunities for Reading Specialist
School districts hire reading specialists to coordinate reading programs, support students and teachers, and work with intervention services.
Employment of instructional coordinators is projected to grow 6% from 2019 to 2029, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. As states and school districts put greater emphasis on student achievement data, schools may increasingly turn to instructional coordinators to develop better curriculums and improve teachers’ effectiveness.
Meet our Alumni
RACHEL OWENS, 2010
Director of Special Education, Provident Charter School
"When deciding to attend graduate school, Carlow University was a natural choice, not only because of its familiarity, but also because of the various degree options."
ANTWAN CARTER, 2018
Head Teacher, Child’s World Daycare
"I especially loved The Campus Laboratory School. It was a chance to experience the design of different classrooms, closely observe many teaching styles, and practice using different instructional strategies in a supportive environment."
MICHAEL SHOATS, 2020
Chemistry Teacher, Avonworth School District
"I want to take this moment and thank Dr. Keely Baronak and the whole Carlow team for the education and experiences I've gained from the MEd Secondary Education program. I'm excited to represent Carlow in my new home."
Official transcripts from all degree-granting institutions you have attended
Personal essay that describes your academic objectives
Current resume or curriculum vitae
Two letters of recommendation that address your leadership potential and ability to succeed in graduate-level work
Fall, Spring & Summer
An undergraduate GPA of 3.0 or higher is preferred; however, provisional admission is also possible if you do not meet all of the admission criteria but exhibit a strong possibility of academic success. No prerequisites or teacher licensure are required for this degree and certification.