What You Should Know About This Degree
In order to teach in public schools in the U.S., educators need a state-issued teaching license or certification. A bachelor’s degree is the minimum required level of education needed to obtain teaching credentials. However, some states do require students to eventually earn a master’s degree in order to maintain their credentials.
When it comes to master’s in literacy and reading degrees, some programs are designed for educators who already have their teaching license or certificate, while others will lead to licensure or certification after completion. Your educational and professional background will determine which type of program you are seeking.
If you are earning your master’s as a pathway to obtaining your credentials, review your state’s regulations before selecting a program. Some programs only prepare students for licensure or certification in the state in which the program is located. Individuals who do not have state-issued teaching credentials will be limited to job opportunities in private, charter, and alternative schools.
Another consideration is attending a program that is accredited by the Council for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation. Some states require that students complete a CAEP-accredited program as a prerequisite for obtaining their licensure or certification.
Here are questions you can ask when researching online master’s in reading and literacy programs:
- Am I eligible for this program? Most programs are designed for individuals who have a bachelor’s degree in education, as well as classroom experience and teaching licensure. The number of years of experience required can vary by program. Look at the program’s eligibility requirements carefully, to ensure that you meet the minimum qualifications for the program you select.span>
- Are there any in-person requirements for this program? Hands-on classroom experience is an important component of most reading and literacy programs. In instances where students are currently teaching, you may be able to complete these requirements in your classroom. Otherwise, find out the details of the program’s experiential learning components, and make sure you can accommodate them in your schedule.
Other steps you can take at this time include gathering your application materials, and confirming application submissions deadlines and procedures. This information is usually available on the school’s website, or you can contact their admissions department.
You should also consider how you will finance your graduate education, and explore options including student loans, scholarships, assistantships, and tuition assistance benefits from your employer, if available.