Graduate
Master's
Advanced Certificate

Literacy Education Catalog

School of Education & Human Services
Literacy (MSEd and Advanced Certificate)

Program Director:  Jennifer Stowe, PhD Director of Graduate Literacy Programs
 

Introduction

The Canisius College graduate literacy programs lead to a master’s degree in literacy for either Birth-Grade 6 or Grades 5-12.  The program also prepares students to meet New York State requirements for certification as a literacy specialist.  Coursework for each program includes 33 hours of study, and candidates have the option of completing 9 hours of additional coursework to qualify for certification in both age groups.  Coursework also includes two practicum experiences that involve working with children in a clinical setting, specifically testing and tutoring in literacy skills (e.g. reading and writing).  Candidates do not need to come to campus to complete their practicums and can usually fulfill these practicum requirements in one of the school districts of their choice.

Admissions Requirements

  • Free Online Application - The application includes a 300 word essay.
  • Official Bachelor's Degree Transcript. Unofficial or in progress transcripts are acceptable to begin the admissions review process. Applicants for the Fall 2016 semester and beyond will be expected to have a 3.0 undergraduate GPA. Applicants with less than a 3.0 undergraduate GPA will undergo additional review.
  • Test Scores. All applicants will be required to submit Graduate Records Examination (GRE), Millers Analogies Test (MAT), OR Academic Literacy Skills Test (ALST), test scores.
  • Two Letters of Recommendation. Letters can be personal, professional or academic references.
  • Evidence of teaching certification 
  • Canadian and other international applicants must provide a completed Certification of Finances form.

Field experiences in the Online Programs

In the curriculum, a 50 hour field experience is noted for two courses. The first field experience is completed in EDR 601 (Birth-Grade 6) Diagnosis and Diagnostic Block or EDR 602 (Grades 5-12) Diagnosis and Diagnostic Block. The second field experience is the Advanced Practicum, EDR 603 (Birth-Grade 6) or EDR 604 (Grades 5-12). 

Licensure Disclosure

Canisius College cannot determine whether completion of this program would be sufficient to meet licensure requirements outside of New York State for the intended occupation. We advise you to contact your state licensing board or appropriate licensing entity to determine whether the program meets requirements for Professional Licensure in the state where you are located or the state in which you intend to pursue licensure. Please contact the associate dean of your school if you have further questions.

Curriculum

Online Curriculum for Professional Certification in Literacy, Birth – Grade 6

Program Details

Required Core Courses
EDR 502Foundations of Literacy3
EDR 509Teaching Literacy with Diverse Population3
EDR 510Creating a Literate Environment3
EDR 515Introduction to Research3
EDR 600Literacy Curriculum and the Role of the Reading Specialist3
EDR 616Research in Reading3
Additional Courses
EDR 501Reading and Writing in the Content Areas3
EDR 505Reading to Grow: Children's Literature & Social Justice3
EDR 508Emergent Literacy3
EDR 601Birth-Grade 6: Diagnosis and Diagnostic Teaching Clinical Practicum3
EDR 603Advanced Practicum: Birth-Grade 63
Total Credits33
Optional
To Add Grade 5-12 Certification
EDR 504Adolescent Literacy3
EDR 604Advanced Practicum: Grades 5-123
Total Credits6

Required Certification Exams for Initial Certification

New York State Teachers Certification Exams (NYSTCE)

  • CST: Content Specialty Test (Literacy)

Completion of Graduation Portfolio Requirement

Candidates will use Task Stream to complete graduate portfolio requirements. Course instructors will also designate that certain assignments be included in the portfolio.

Curriculum

Online Professional Certification in Literacy, Grades 5 - 12

Program Details

Required Core Courses
EDR 502Foundations of Literacy3
EDR 509Teaching Literacy with Diverse Population3
EDR 510Creating a Literate Environment3
EDR 515Introduction to Research3
EDR 600Literacy Curriculum and the Role of the Reading Specialist3
EDR 616Research in Reading3
Additional Courses
EDR 503Reading in the Secondary School3
EDR 504Adolescent Literacy3
EDR 506Reading to Grow: Adolescent Literature & Social Justice3
EDR 602Grade 5-12: Diagnosis and Diagnostic Teaching Clinical Practicum3
EDR 604Advanced Practicum: Grades 5-123
Total Credits33
Optional
To add B-6 Certification
EDR 508Emergent Literacy3
EDR 603Advanced Practicum: Birth-Grade 63
Total Credits6

Required Certification Exams for Initial Certification

New York State Teachers Certification Exams (NYSTCE)

  • CST: Content Specialty Test (Literacy)

Completion of Graduation Portfolio Requirement

Candidates will use Task Stream to complete graduate portfolio requirements. Course instructors will also designate that certain assignments be included in the portfolio.

Curriculum

EDR 501Reading and Writing in the Content Areas3
EDR 502Foundations of Literacy3
EDR 505Reading to Grow: Children's Literature & Social Justice3
EDR 508Emergent Literacy3
EDR 509Teaching Literacy with Diverse Population3
EDR 601Birth-Grade 6: Diagnosis and Diagnostic Teaching Clinical Practicum3
Total Credits18

Roadmap

First Year
FallSpringSummer
EDR 502EDR 509EDR 505
EDR 508EDR 601EDR 501

Learning Goals & Objectives

Learning Goal 1

Candidates in the literacy program will demonstrate knowledge of the major theoretical, conceptual, pedagogical, and evidence-based foundations of literacy and language and the ways in which they interrelate.

Candidates will:

  • Increase their understanding of developmentally appropriate practices to promote learners’ growth in listening, speaking, reading, writing, viewing, and visually representing. 

  • Increase their understanding of and ability to implement a variety of formative and summative assessment practices in the field of literacy. 

  • Increase their awareness of digital and print texts that can be used to support students’ literacy growth, embracing texts that represent cultural and linguistic diversity.

Learning Goal 2

Candidates in the literacy program will demonstrate professional knowledge, skills, and dispositions as they engage in the selection/development and implementation of literacy curricula and assessment to support a diverse population of learners.

Candidates will:

  • Increase their ability to examine, design, implement, and reflect upon language and literacy curricula to create motivating and engaging learning experiences for students of varying ages and skill levels.

  • Increase their ability to create and use integrated and interdisciplinary instructional approaches to promote student growth and engagement in all language processes.
  • Increase their ability to collect and use data in an ethical manner to explain student progress to stakeholders, reflect upon their professional practice, and make informed instructional decisions

Learning Goal 3

Candidates in the literacy program will demonstrate willingness to use their skills to benefit and serve society. Within the contexts of their work, candidates promote authentic learning, social and emotional development, and a commitment to social justice in environments that fosters respect for diversity and the dignity of all.

Candidates will:

  • Increase their ability to set high expectations for all learners and engage in culturally and linguistically sustaining instructional practices.
  • Increase their ability to collaborate with students, parents, and colleagues to enhance students’ literacy learning and promote social justice.

Learning Goal 4

Candidates in the literacy program will demonstrate self-reflection as a habit of mind, continuously assessing and refining their professional practice as they construct a rich repertoire of research-based knowledge, skills, and attitudes for effective performance ensuring that all students and/or clients have optimal opportunities to learn and grow.

Candidates will:

  • Increase their ability to reflect on their own cultural and professional experiences as a means of appreciating diversity and fostering individual and school growth.
  • Increase their understanding of a variety of practices, grouping configurations, and environmental characteristics that can be used to enhance literacy development.

Learning Goal 5

Candidates in the literacy program are life-long learners who reflect upon their practice, engage in ongoing professional development, and advocate for their students and communities. 

Candidates will:

  • Increasingly demonstrate the professional disposition of a life-long learner by engaging in professional inquiry and participating in professional learning communities.

  • Increase their ability to develop relationships with and advocate for students, families, and communities to enhance literacy learning and the status of the teaching profession.

Courses

EDR 501 Reading and Writing in the Content Areas 3 Credits

Strategies for teaching and developing young children's skills in effectively applying literacy skills as tools for learning in content areas will be examined. Candidates will develop materials and procedures, that enhance comprehension, vocabulary acquisition, and study skills of diverse populations of learners. Various measures for assessing children's performance in subject areas will be studied. Children's literature that supplements textbooks across the content areas will be examined.

Offered: every fall & summer.

EDR 502 Foundations of Literacy 3 Credits

Research-based foundational principles for effective instruction in each of the language areas will be explored. Candidates will study the historical trajectory of literacy research and instruction, learn strategies for literacy instruction with diverse populations of learners, create lesson plans that apply instructional techniques, select materials based on children's literacy level and interests, and examine various assessment measures. Multiple genres of children's literature along with applications in literacy instruction will be explored.

Offered: every fall & spring.

EDR 503 Reading in the Secondary School 3 Credits

The effective application of literacy skills as tools for teaching secondary level content areas to diverse populations will be examined. Candidates will develop materials and procedures that enhance comprehension. Integration of content and skills across subjects will be emphasized as well as methods to meet specific needs of students, including the use of multiple measures of assessment, diverse genres of literature, and various interventions in literacy instruction.

Offered: fall & summer.

EDR 504 Adolescent Literacy 3 Credits

Candidates will address the literacy needs of an increasingly diverse middle childhood and adolescent school population. Candidates will explore the factors influencing literacy education in the secondary school and become familiar with effective diagnostic teaching strategies appropriate for this diverse population.

Offered: fall & summer.

EDR 505 Reading to Grow: Children's Literature & Social Justice 3 Credits

Students in this course will learn how to select, read, evaluate, and analyze children’s literature with the goal of supporting readers and teaching critical thinking. Through various genres of children’s literature, candidates will develop an informed awareness of the ways in which children’s literature can be used to support multilingual learners, nurture struggling readers, and promote social justice in the classroom. Candidates will learn to use children’s literature to foster student awareness of and appreciation for diverse and complex cultures, perspectives, and experiences. Candidates will also examine various pedagogical practices and theoretical stances related to equity, linguistic diversity, social justice, and societal transformation.

Offered: every fall & spring.

EDR 506 Reading to Grow: Adolescent Literature & Social Justice 3 Credits

Students in this course will learn how to select, read, evaluate, and analyze adolescent texts with the goal of supporting readers and teaching critical thinking. Through various genres, candidates will develop an informed awareness of the ways in which texts can be used to support multilingual learners, nurture struggling readers, and promote social justice in the classroom. Candidates will learn to use adolescent literature to foster student awareness of and appreciation for diverse and complex cultures, perspectives, and experiences. Candidates will also examine various pedagogical practices and theoretical stances related to equity, linguistic diversity, social justice, and societal transformation.

Offered: every fall & spring.

EDR 508 Emergent Literacy 3 Credits

Research on the emergence of young children's literacy knowledge and structures, that enhance this development will be studied. Implementation of the emergent literacy paradigm through lessons and programs for a diverse population of young children will be a focus. Multiple measures of assessment, effective early intervention models, and multiple genres of literature with applications in literacy instruction will be explored.

Offered: every fall & summer.

EDR 509 Teaching Literacy with Diverse Population 3 Credits

Strategies for effective literacy instruction with diverse populations will be examined. These include research-based approaches for special education students, ESL/LEP students and gifted and talented students. Candidates will examine how to match instruction to students' needs and how to incorporate differentiated instruction in a classroom. Multicultural literature and literature that deals with specific disabilities will be examined. Candidates create a comprehensive curricular unit that is ready to be implemented in a classroom of diversity.

Offered: every fall & spring.

EDR 510 Creating a Literate Environment 3 Credits

Instructional techniques for concurrently developing skills in speaking, listening, reading and writing as well as specific models for instruction that meet diverse needs and interests at all levels will be examined. Organizational components of an effective reading and writing classroom will be explored along with methods for providing a print-rich environment that spans a broad spectrum of reading levels, genres and interests.

Offered: every summer.

EDR 515 Introduction to Research 3 Credits

Descriptive and inferential statistical methods, quantitative and qualitative methods, research models, procedures for designing research studies and ethical principles will be studied. Candidates will also analyze literacy research studies that incorporate the various statistical procedures studied.

Offered: every summer.

EDR 600 Literacy Curriculum and the Role of the Reading Specialist 3 Credits

Procedures for planning, evaluating and implementing curriculum at the school district level that address state and local mandates will be explored. Multiple resources that can be used in the implementation of curriculum will be examined. The role that the literacy specialist plays in coordinating this process, guiding the selection of instructional materials, and determining appropriate in-service will be examined.

Offered: every summer.

EDR 601 Birth-Grade 6: Diagnosis and Diagnostic Teaching Clinical Practicum 3 Credits

Candidates will explore theories and conduct in-depth literacy assessments, using both formal and informal age-appropriate measures. Candidates will examine administrative procedures and the interpretation of results for multiple assessment instruments, including diagnostic and achievement tests, reading inventories, observations, and anecdotal records. The diagnostic teaching model will be introduced and traditional remediation and intervention theories will be explored as candidates work with struggling readers during their initial clinical practicum.

Prerequisite: EDR 501, EDR 502, EDR 508, & EDR 509.

Offered: every fall & spring.

EDR 602 Grade 5-12: Diagnosis and Diagnostic Teaching Clinical Practicum 3 Credits

Candidates will explore theories and conduct in-depth literacy assessments using both formal and informal age-appropriate measures. Candidates will examine procedures and the interpretation of results for multiple assessment instruments, including diagnostic and achievement tests, reading inventories, observations and anecdotal records. The diagnostic teaching model will be introduced. Traditional remediation and intervention theories will be explored as candidates work with struggling readers during their initial clinical practicum.

Prerequisite: EDR 502, EDR 503, EDR 504, & EDR 509.

Offered: every fall & spring.

EDR 603 Advanced Practicum: Birth-Grade 6 3 Credits

Candidates observe and fully participate as an intern in reading clinics, schools, or public and voluntary agencies serving children who are experiencing literacy problems. Candidates will refine proficiencies in instruction and assessment, organization, and enhancement of a literacy curriculum as they work with a professional team at the site. Candidates will serve as a resource for literacy instruction; they will also prepare staff development for professionals at the site based on a survey of teachers' interests/needs.

Prerequisite: EDR 601.

Offered: every fall & spring.

EDR 604 Advanced Practicum: Grades 5-12 3 Credits

Candidates observe and fully participate as an intern in reading clinics, schools, or public and voluntary agencies serving children who are experiencing literacy problems. Candidates will refine proficiencies in instruction and assessment, organization, and enhancement of a literacy curriculum as they work with a professional team at the site. Candidates will serve as a resource for literacy instruction; they will also prepare staff development for professionals at the site based on a survey of teachers' interests/needs.

Prerequisite: EDR 602.

Offered: every fall & spring.

EDR 616 Research in Reading 3 Credits

The course will include an examination of research on teaching in general and teaching literacy in particular. It will explore perspectives and questions on contrasting paradigms, implications of this research for curriculum, instruction, policy and practice, and teacher education and professional development. Each candidate will plan a research project consistent with his/her interests and with the course goals.

Prerequisite: EDR 515.

Offered: every fall & spring.