The master of education in literacy education at Penn State Harrisburg prepares full-time and part-time graduate candidates with a comprehensive approach to literacy education. The 33-credit program infuses current research and policy to prepare reading/literacy specialists to meet the varied and diverse literacy needs of K-12 learners.
In Theoretical Foundations of Literacy (EDUC 561), candidates examine the foundations that affect the fields of literacy and reading education, become reacquainted with mainstream theories, and are introduced to those of critical theorists who challenge traditional perspectives that have often marginalized race, class, and linguistic variety in learning and in literacy development. In Literacy Leadership (EDUC 865), candidates explore factors that directly impact literacy in 21st century schools, namely diverse communities, access to voice in school decision making, adults’ collaborative practices, academic standards, intervention, multimodality, and multiliteracy.
Graduate candidates participate in a full academic year clinical model in Literacy Methods (EDUC 863) and Literacy Clinic (EDUC 864). Graduate candidates learn how to write a case study by conducting assessments and planning evidence-based instruction for K-12 learners with literacy difficulties. Candidates use digital and traditional texts to teach literacy across the curriculum. Candidates also participate in a final capstone course that provides the opportunity to work closely with K-12 learners in a faculty-supervised, clinical setting.
Throughout the program, candidates work closely with nationally known faculty members and cultivate strong peer support networks. The Literacy Education program is aligned with the Pennsylvania Department of Education (PDE) and the International Literacy Association (ILA) Standards.
Following successful completion of the program, candidates are eligible to take the Praxis examination for certification as a K-12 Reading Specialist. The Reading Specialist Praxis Exam consists of questions about assessment, literacy development, leadership skills, and case study analysis. Our program completers continue to have a high success rate with 100% of candidates passing the exam. A Literacy Leadership postbaccalaureate certificate and fellowship opportunities in the Capital Area Writing Project/ National Writing Project are also available.
For course descriptions and requirements, see the University Bulletin.