The Reading Specialist M.A.Ed. expands and improves students’ skills as teachers of reading and meets the Virginia requirements for an add-on endorsement as a reading specialist.
The program provides intense, and detailed training in formal reading assessment while providing additional experiences with informal instruments for assessing reader development.
Students are trained to be more than reading teachers; they also are trained as literacy leaders. Such preparation enables them to provide staff development and demonstration teaching for individual teachers or small groups of teachers. Students in this program are also prepared to organize and give presentations for parents and other administrators on literacy issues, analyze a school’s assessment data, and provide clinical work with individual students and small groups of students.
To provide practicing and prospective teachers the opportunity to learn contemporary pedagogy in Reading, to address contemporary and controversial issues that affect public education. This program is designed to meet Virginia certification standards for reading specialists.
Reading Specialist Requirements: Education 503, 504, 510, 511, 512, and 519; English 520; and English/Language Arts 502, 514, and 516. Substitutions for listed courses must be approved by the Program Director.
Admission to a Master of Arts in Education degree program requires a baccalaureate degree from an accredited undergraduate institution with a minimum GPA of 2.75 overall and 3.0 in the major; completion of the Graduate Record Examination; submission of a writing sample of high quality; and review by an admissions committee. For experienced teachers and other individuals of exceptional promise, the admissions committee may modify the GPA requirement. Prospective graduate students are required to provide three recommendations from individuals familiar with their work, scores from Praxis I, submit a completed application for graduate admission, and provide official copies of any professional tests completed.
While the M.A.Ed.in Reading is cohort based, it has an open admissions policy. Students can enter the program at appropriate junctures during the first year of the two-year sequence.
Graduate students should select courses in their desired track in consultation with the appropriate Program Director or their advisor. Students can reasonably expect to complete the degree within a three-year period, including enrollments in fall, spring, and summer terms. Thirty (30) total semester hours are required for completion of the Master’s degree. All students are expected to complete the degree within a six-year period. Students who go beyond this time limit may have to take additional courses, as determined by the Program Director.
When students have completed 24 semester hours of course work, they will be required either to take a written comprehensive examination or to complete an integrative project. A follow-up oral examination may be required.
Satisfactory progress requires a 3.00 GPA. Any student in the graduate degree program whose GPA falls below 3.00 after attempting nine or more semester hours of course work will not be in good standing and will be placed on academic warning. If, at the end of the first semester of academic warning, or any subsequent semester, the student again does not attain minimum satisfactory academic progress, he or she may be placed on academic warning a second time. If a student fails to raise his or her GPA to a 3.00 after two semesters on academic warning, he or she will be dismissed from the program.
Students dismissed from the graduate program may apply for readmission after one semester. Students seeking readmission after having been dismissed must provide evidence of an attempt to improve academic performance during their time away from the graduate program. A non-refundable fee equal to the initial admission fee must accompany the application for readmission. Students who are readmitted to the program two semesters or more after academic dismissal must meet the requirements of the graduate catalog in force when they are readmitted. Students who have been academically dismissed twice from the graduate program will not be readmitted to the program. Applications for readmission should be directed to the Neff Center for Teacher Education and will be reviewed by faculty and an admissions committee.