Literacy Education

Program Highlights

Program Brochure

Program Highlights

  • No GRE is required for admission.
  • Programs may be completed in less than two years.
  • Courses are offered on campus in Gorham and Portland, as well as online and in blended formats.
  • The required Literacy Education practicum (EDU 639) is fully arranged and coordinated by USM.  It provides graduate students hands-on opportunities to apply their literacy learning and leadership skills while addressing “summer slide” by tutoring local children. 
  • Literacy Education certificates and degrees are based on the International Literacy Association’s Professional Standards for Reading Professionals, which emphasize:
    • foundational knowledge
    • curriculum and instruction
    • assessment and evaluation
    • diversity
    • literate environment
    • professional learning and leadership
  • Students learn alongside expert faculty, including full-time professors and outstanding practitioners who are accessible and committed to each student’s success.
  • Graduates have applied their learning in their classrooms as K-12 teacher leaders or pursued new roles as literacy specialists, literacy coaches, Title I Directors, and literacy interventionists.

M.S.Ed. in Literacy Education

A state-approved program leading to Maine’s literacy specialist license (092) for certified educators who already have two years’ teaching experience. Graduates consistently exceed required passing scores on the Praxis Subject Assessment.

Through this program, students:

  • receive a sound theoretical and empirical knowledge base related to literacy acquisition
  • become informed decision makers capable of designing and implementing appropriate instruction in reading and writing at all levels
  • become effective advocates for improving literacy instruction at their schools

Certificate of Advanced Studies in Literacy Education

This post-master's certificate meets individual student needs with a totally self-designed program that may, in close consultation with a faculty advisor, lead to Maine’s literacy specialist license (092) in only 30 credit hours.  It is designed for certified classroom teachers, administrators, and other educators who want to pursue advanced study in literacy.

Certificate of Graduate Study in Literacy Education

Primarily for teachers and educational technicians, this certificate provides a basic background in literacy without undertaking a full master's degree program.  The sequence of courses focues on how students acquire literacy and how they evolve asl literacy users.  Credits earned from this program may be transferable to a degree program.  The certificate does not lead to state certification.