Master of Arts in Education: Reading/Literacy Specialization

The Masters in Reading/Literacy at Maryville University is highly respected throughout the St. Louis region for producing among the best reading teachers and literacy specialists for area schools. Maryville’s program is known for its innovative integrated approach to the practical application of literacy strategies in real classrooms.

No function of education is more important than teaching children how to read and process information. Without these basic skills, a child’s ability to learn material in any subject, from math to art history to astronomy, is vastly limited. Reading and literacy specialists are increasingly called upon to help students and schools meet state and federal competency regulations. Maryville understands the seriousness of this career and we are committed to helping you become a responsible literacy education professional.

If you hold a valid teaching certificate in Missouri and have taught for at least two years, the curriculum can earn Missouri’s endorsement certificate in reading specialization. For any teacher, the coursework can count as a valuable area of concentration within the Master of Arts in Education degree. Teachers who already have a master’s degree can obtain the special reading certification by taking a set of courses based upon an evaluation by the director of the program.

We take a balanced, research-based approach to teaching reading and include a strong leadership component for managing literacy programs in schools. Not only will you be prepared as an educator, but you will also gain leadership and management skills that will be valuable in the future.

For more information: email us at or call 314.529.9542.

Program Features

Recognized for Excellence
When you earn your MA in Education from Maryville, you’ll have opportunities for excellence on every level. Our program is nationally accredited and recognized locally for being a leader in reading teacher education. You’ll work with outstanding faculty members and exemplary professionals in the field. You’ll enjoy small classes, innovative approaches and plenty of opportunities for professional growth. With a strong foundation of theory and its practical application, you’ll earn the reputation of being one of the most highly respected and best educators in the region.

Practice-based Approaches
In Maryville’s program, teachers learn and apply classroom-tested strategies along with the skills necessary to coach peers in these strategies. An innovative approach provides competencies across various areas integrated within several courses that have literacy as its foundation, allowing for the application within a literacy context of many skills in courses taught by experts in literacy who have applied these competencies in real literacy classrooms. A field-based practicum experience is built into a summer experience working with struggling readers in a local school under the close tutelage of a reading coach and a Maryville literacy faculty member.

Professional/Career Opportunities

Additional coursework and professional development can greatly enhance your experience in the classroom and your relationship with students. Plus, in most districts, your salary will increase when you complete a master’s degree. Federal legislative mandates hold teachers particularly responsible for literacy achievement – no other concentration is more of a foundation for learning than literacy. Teachers who specialize in this area will be specifically prepared to help students surpass educational standards for years to come. Reading specialists are considered a critical need field in Missouri, increasing your opportunities for career advancement.

Degree Offerings and Requirements

Admission Requirements

For admission to the master’s program, you must meet the following requirements:

  • Submit official transcripts of all undergraduate and graduate work. You must have maintained at least a 3.0 cumulative GPA from your undergraduate studies; below 3.0 may apply for provisional acceptance.
  • Complete an application for admission to the program (online).
  • Submit three letters of recommendation from qualified professionals.
  • Submit the application essay to demonstrate that you have the necessary competencies for the program.
  • Complete an interview with the program director.
  • International students must submit appropriate TOEFL scores.

Back to Top