The Literacy department offers 4 different Literacy programs at the graduate level. Each graduate program is designed to prepare practicing and prospective teachers who are committed to improving literacy skills of his or her students. Our programs are accredited and fulfill standards/competencies governed by the International Literacy Association (ILA), Council for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation (CAEP), and the Pennsylvania Department of Education (PDE).

As a graduate student in Literacy, you will learn from a curriculum that emphasizes the importance of assessing students’ literacy strengths and needs, and using that assessment to design appropriate instruction that focuses on word–level knowledge, fluency, vocabulary development, comprehension, and writing. You will also learn the importance of basing literacy instruction in children’s literature, honoring learners’ multicultural diversity, and helping learners develop 21st Century literacy skills.

As a graduate of our program, you will be an expert in developing and implementing successful literacy and language interventions for students who need extra support in strengthening their reading skills.

Prospective Students

If you are new to West Chester University, WCU’s Graduate College, or transferring from another program (internally or externally) and are interested in learning more about our programs and admission requirements, please visit the Department of Literacy section of this year’s online catalog.

If you are a non–degree student and have questions about enrolling in Literacy (EDR) courses, we’ve created this document just for you: Information for Prospective Literacy Graduate Students .

Graduate Literacy Programs

M.Ed. in Literacy and Reading Specialist Certification

The M.Ed. in Literacy and Reading Specialist Certification is a 36 credit program that grants a master’s degree and fulfills all PDE requirements in order for students to apply for their PA Reading Specialist Certification for grades K–12. If you have your Initial Teaching Certification (or even a master’s degree already) and want to focus on Literacy education, then our program may be right for you.

Read the M.Ed. in Reading Guidance Information Sheet for course requirements and more details about the program.

Pennsylvania Reading Specialist Certification, K–12

The PA Reading Specialist Certification, K–12 is a 30 credit program for students wanting to fulfill PDE requirements for Reading Specialist Certification only. Students in this program take 30 credits of Literacy core courses, in addition to any PDE 49.13 Competency deficiencies that exist at intake. This program does not result in a master degree; upon successful completion of this program, students will be able to apply for their PA Reading Specialist Certificate.

Read our PA Reading Specialist Certification, K–12 Guidance Information Sheet for more important course information and addition program completion requirements.

Literacy Certificate

For students who are not seeking either a M.Ed. in Reading or Reading Specialist Certificate, we offer an 18 credit literacy certificate. This program is for students who already have their Initial Teaching Certification and want to improve their classroom practice in Literacy. This program also benefits students who already have their master’s degree but would like to focus on Literacy education.

Read our Literacy Certificate Guidance Information Sheet for more information about this program.

Literacy Coaching Endorsement

This program is designed for current Reading Specialist seeking to expand their professional services with recognition of the continuation of their specialized education validated by PDE. The Coaching Endorsement recognizes the completion of additional coursework that prepares reading specialists to lead and support colleagues as they teach children to read and write.

Read our Literacy Coaching Endorsement Advising/Information Sheet for more information about this program.

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