Literacy Education

Graduate: Master's

School of Education & Human Services

Literacy is more than the capacity to read and write – it is the ability to apply reading and writing skills to effectively connect, interpret and communicate information and ideas in today’s world. Consider a Master in Literacy if you would like to advance your teaching career in a specialty that may be the most important factor in a child’s educational development.

Program Description

The Master in Literacy program combines academic courses – both online and on campus – with flexible learning options to meet your needs as a working education professional. If you hold an initial teaching certification, the program enables you to earn Literacy certification in either birth through grade 6 or grades 5 through 12.

Each concentration involves working with children in a clinical setting and applying research-tested approaches for literacy instruction. The program meets New York State requirements as a literacy specialist and is recognized by the International Literacy Association for meeting the highest level of its standards.

Highlighted Courses

  • EDR 504 Adolescent Literacy
  • EDR 508 Emergent Literacy
  • EDR 509 Teaching Reading in Classrooms of Diversity
  • EDR 600 Role of the Literacy Specialist
  • EDR 601/602 or EDR ON 610/611 Diagnosis (of Literacy Achievement)
  • EDR 612/613 Literacy Practicum
  • EDR 603/604 Literacy Practicum


Most courses in the program are done online and required practicums are completed in an intensive two-week summer experience at the college’s Literacy Center designed specifically for educating literacy specialists. Candidates are prepared to become experts in literacy instruction—in their classroom, as an intervention teacher, or as a literacy coach for the school or district. Candidates have opportunities to work with tutoring programs offered at the Literacy Center. They also work with a literacy specialist at a school as they complete practicum work. A graduate assistant works closely with faculty and programs.


or better pass rate on literacy certification exam for program graduates.

Faculty-Student Collaboration

Faculty and literacy candidates collaborate during practicum courses. They tutor students in the local community in the Canisius Literacy Center, using research-tested practices, to deliver a balanced approach to literacy instruction.

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