What Is a Master’s in Reading with an Elementary Education Emphasis?
Literacy is the foundation of learning, and all students deserve the opportunity to benefit from rich and varied reading experiences. However, many students require extra guidance from literacy specialists and interventionists. Grand Canyon University’s Master of Arts in Reading with an Emphasis in Elementary Education enhances the ability of active teachers to deliver high-quality reading instruction for K-8 students. By learning best practices in teaching reading education, candidates promote fair access to literacy for diverse student populations.
This master’s in reading education is offered through the College of Education. It aligns with the standards established by the International Literacy Association. The MA combines coursework with observational and practice-based learning experiences.
Benefits of a Curriculum-Based Reading MA Degree for Elementary Education
The Master of Arts in Reading with an Emphasis in Elementary Education enables candidates to explore best practices in supporting literacy in collaborative settings. This degree uniquely qualifies candidates to apply advanced theories in corrective reading strategies and instructional methods. Students will learn how to encourage the development and maintenance of literacy-rich environments and the integration of literacy across curricular areas.
Some of the topic areas you will study may include:
- Methods of engaging learners of diverse backgrounds and skill levels
- Planning, developing and evaluating reading curricula
- Leadership models for the promotion of literacy
- Evidence-based best practices in reading and writing processes
- Brain-based learning with neuroscience
- Effective communication strategies for young students
- Advanced assessment systems and data interpretation at the school and district levels
- The role of advocacy in literacy leadership
Reading specialist and literacy coach candidates will also complete the Elementary Practicum in Reading. This practicum requires candidates to successfully complete the following:
- Conduct research and analysis for a Literacy Work Sample (LWS)
- Design and implement literacy intervention instruction
- Coach other teachers in best practices for student learning improvement
What Can I Do with a Master’s Degree in Reading for Elementary Education?
A Master of Arts in Reading with an Emphasis in Elementary Education can prepare you to pursue a rewarding career helping young children experience the joys of reading. Graduates can apply for work in a variety of settings, which may include the following:
- Public, private and charter schools
- Elementary and middle schools
- Education welfare organizations
- Social service agencies
- Community organizations
- Private companies
Many graduates with this academic specialization do pursue careers in the classroom as elementary teachers. However, other positions may become available. These may include:
- Private tutor
- Literacy support provider
- Curriculum specialist
- School literacy coach
- Textbook writer or consultant
- District level consultant
The master’s in elementary reading education requires all applicants to have access to a K-8 classroom in order to successfully complete the program assignments. In addition, all applicants must submit a copy of their current teaching license. Alternatively, applicants may submit documentation proving a minimum of one year of teaching experience. An enrollment representative is available to answer questions from applicants whose states require a K-12 credential. Graduates are required to obtain any necessary licenses, certifications or endorsements from the state in which they plan to teach.
Program Core Courses
This course is designed to prepare students for the graduate learning experience at Grand Canyon University. Students have opportunities to develop and strengthen the skills necessary to succeed as graduate students in the College of Education. Emphasis is placed on utilizing the tools for graduate success.
This course provides an introduction to applied research in education across the major quantitative, qualitative, and action research traditions. Coursework focuses on understanding the research process and its integrated components and evaluating published research reports from the perspective of a critical consumer. Scientific reasoning and research design are also explored.
This course focuses on brain research (from neuroscience to the behavioral and cognitive sciences) that relates to teaching and learning and suggests ways that brain research can be translated into what teachers do in schools and classrooms. Teacher candidates will examine the inner workings of the brain and the effect on student learning, memory, and transfer. Specifically, the course explores the body of knowledge that represents the application of brain research to classroom practice, and how knowledge about the human brain can affect the curricular, instructional, and assessment decisions that teachers make every day. Practicum/field experience hours: None. Fingerprint clearance not required.
Reading/Literacy specialist candidates survey the theoretical and evidence-based foundations of reading and writing processes and instruction. This survey includes an exploration of historical through current reading and writing development, processes, and components. Reading/literacy specialist candidates are introduced to ethical and professional roles. Practicum/field experience hours: None. Fingerprint clearance not required. Practicum/field experience hours: None. Fingerprint clearance not required.
Reading/Literacy specialist candidates survey a variety of assessment tools and related practices. This survey prepares the reading/literacy specialist to plan and evaluate effective reading and writing instruction that optimizes student learning. In addition, the reading/literacy specialist candidates develop effective communication techniques. Practicum/field experience hours: 10. Fingerprint clearance required. Prerequisite: REA-500. Practicum/field experience hours: 10. Fingerprint clearance required. Prerequisite: REA-500.
Reading/literacy specialist candidates engage in advanced studies of assessment systems to develop, select, and interpret data at the building and district level. This advanced study of assessment information is used to plan and evaluate curriculum and instruction at the building and district level. In addition, the reading/literacy specialist candidates communicate assessment results to a variety of audiences. Practicum/field experience hours: 10. Fingerprint clearance required. Prerequisite: REA-510. Practicum/field experience hours: 10. Fingerprint clearance required. Prerequisite: REA-510.
Reading specialist/literacy coach candidates create a literate environment that fosters reading and writing by integrating foundational knowledge, instructional practices, approaches and methods, curriculum materials, and the appropriate use of assessments. Practicum/field experience hours: 10. Fingerprint clearance required. Prerequisite: REA-515.
Reading specialist/literacy coach candidates survey professional learning and leadership models for promoting literacy. emphasizing positive dispositions, individual and collaborative learning, the ability to design and evaluate professional learning experiences, the importance of advocacy, and a need for knowledge about adult learning and school leadership. From this survey, reading specialist/literacy coach candidates demonstrate and facilitate professional learning and leadership as a career-long effort and responsibility. Practicum/field experience hours: 10. Fingerprint clearance required. Prerequisite: REA-550.
Reading/Literacy specialist candidates survey instructional approaches and materials that support student learning in reading and writing. This survey prepares the reading/literacy specialist candidates to design an integrated, comprehensive, and balanced curriculum. Practicum/field experience hours: 10. Fingerprint clearance required. Practicum/field experience hours: 10. Fingerprint clearance required.
Reading specialist/literacy coach candidates engage in advanced studies of instructional approaches and materials at the building and district level that support student learning in reading and writing across content areas. From this advanced study, the reading specialist/literacy coach candidates design an integrated, comprehensive, and balanced curriculum. Practicum/field experience hours: 10. Fingerprint clearance required. Prerequisite: REA-520.
The practicum experience requires reading specialist/literacy coach candidates to implement literacy intervention instruction that is designed to meet the specific needs of students and engage in research and analysis to support compilation and creation of a Literacy Work Sample (LWS). In addition, the candidates coach and provide support to other teachers to think reflectively about improving student learning and implementing various instructional practices. Practicum/field experience hours: 75. Fingerprint clearance required. Prerequisite: REA-540.