Reading and Writing Education Graduate Program
Reading and Writing Education Graduate Program Coordinators:
Dr. Chhanda Islam, Early Childhood and Elementary Education
3245 Alexander Hall • Murray, KY 42071-3340
Dr. Sharon Gill, Early Childhood and Elementary Education
3207 Alexander Hall • Murray, KY 42071-3340
Dr. Jo Robertson, Early Childhood and Elementary Education
3203 Alexander Hall • Murray, KY 42071-3340
Are you a licensed teacher seeking to enhance your literacy instruction skills and credentials? Do you have the desire to get involved in literacy coaching or reading recovery? If so, welcome to the Reading & Writing graduate program at Murray State University’s College of Education.
We offer preparation for teachers desiring to add the Literacy Specialist K-12 Endorsement to their certificate. We provide advanced knowledge and training to work with diverse student populations as they develop reading, writing, and oral language skills.
Course work includes language and literacy acquisition, reading difficulties and cross-cultural education, literature, linking assessment and instruction, hands-on practicum experiences, and other areas. We have designed the program to be convenient for current teachers. For example, the practicum (REA 639-02) experience required for the degree can be completed in your own school classroom.
Our faculty members are extremely knowledgeable and highly experienced. They help you improve your practice and put you in touch with the latest theories and innovative teaching strategies. We stress the importance of recognizing a variety of literacies and the meaningful use of literacy and language to improve students' quality of life.
Graduate Programs in Reading & Writing
The College of Education at Murray State University provides graduate programs in Reading & writing for candidates seeking Masters and 30 above certification. Candidates in the Masters degree program may take coursework that meets requirements for the Reading/Writing Endorsement for Grades P-12. Students must apply for admission to the Graduate Program. Students should read the MSU Graduate Bulletin carefully and consult with their advisor.
For more information, click on the program guide sheet:
• Master of Arts in Education Reading and Writing (with Endorsement)
Master of Arts
The graduate programs in Reading Education are guided by the MSU College of Education's Conceptual Framework with its theme of Educator as Reflective Decision-Maker.
Coursework in the programs are designed to help each candidate develop dispositions that will enable them to become an educator who is:
- Tolerant - Considers new ideas, alternative possibilities, different perspectives, and people representing a variety of differences without prejudice or bigotry.
- Responsible - Considers consequences and makes decisions in a rational and thoughtful manner or the welfare of other; acts with integrity to pursue an objective with thoroughness and consistency.
- Enthusiastic - Shows eager and passionate interest; focuses on tasks that relate to beliefs.
- Caring - Demonstrates devotion, compassion, and regard for the welfare of others.
- Confident - Exhibits certainty about possessing the ability, judgment, and internet resources needed to succeed as a teacher.
- Ethical - Conforms to accepted professional standards of conduct by making decisions based on knowledge of moral principles and inner convictions.
Further, the programs were designed in accord with the Kentucky Teacher Standards and the International Reading Associations' Standards for Reading Professionals.
Career Outlook: Graduates with a masters (MA) in reading and writing education can become reading specialists, literacy coaches, reading recovery teachers, program coordinators, instructional and curriculum specialists, ESL teachers, special education educators, and more. People who choose this specialization are licensed P–12 teachers who want to enhance student reading skills in their own classrooms or train others on best practices in reading instruction at a building or district level.
REA 638 graduate students conduct workshops in order to provide educators and parents with current knowledge regarding reading difficulties. These oral presentations are scheduled through Murray Area Council of the International Reading Association (MACIRA) and serve as the teachers’ competency in oral communication exam. Satisfactory demonstrations of program goals and all Kentucky Teacher Standards and International Reading Association’s Standards result in completion of the REA 638 course.
MACIRA is affiliated with the Kentucky Reading Association and International Reading Association and many of the council members served on national committees and advisory groups. MACIRA is a professional organization of educators and individuals actively engaged in the development of literacy throughout the Commonwealth. We are committed to encouraging lifelong reading for pleasure and learning, providing information related to literacy, increasing opportunities for professional growth, and promoting research-based instructional practices.
REA 638/Assessment and Instruction of Children with Reading Difficulties
Reading/Writing Literacy Program
The university’s reading/writing literacy program is designed to increase the comprehension, fluency, and sight word vocabulary of the enrolled P-12 students as well as to develop language and thinking skills. The program offers activities that use reading and rereading texts, cognitively challenging talk, discussion of vocabulary words, summarization of texts, evaluative responses about texts, and connections between texts and real-life experiences. Tutoring is provided by experienced teachers enrolled in REA 638/Assessment and Instruction of Children with Reading Difficulties course. The course is designed to provide teachers with approaches and techniques that research and practice have indicated to be successful. The basic premise of this course is to allow teachers to implement a variety of research-based reading strategies for building the literacy skills of struggling readers. Learning experiences utilize multimedia presentations that actively integrated text and visuals. Multimedia applications such as interactive CD-ROMS and scan-and-read computer programs, which allow the students to accomplish cognitive learning tasks, are also used. Teachers are encouraged to incorporate technology-enriched instruction to encourage P-12 students to use newer, more sophisticated tools such as electronic books, interactive software, integrated media, and problem-solving applications.
To practice research-based reading strategies, teachers work with individual students early each afternoon for one hour. The teachers spend the remaining one hour with the course instructor discussing how to integrate skills with strategies. Since students who are struggling readers are part of every classroom, teachers are informed about how best to provide strategic instruction to those readers, but are also given specific help for working with the students enrolled in the summer program.
The ultimate purpose of the summer reading/writing literacy program is to provide motivating instruction for students with literacy problems through the use of authentic instruction, including technology. The special training of the teacher and the one-on-one tutoring situations make possible in-depth assessment and flexibility in adapting instructional techniques to meet individual differences and needs.
REA 639 -02 Supervised Practicum in Reading
The REA 639 graduate students explore a topic related to literacy education in depth, and provide leadership in literacy in their schools and districts. Students in REA 639 design and complete a project that demonstrate their mastery of one or more of the IRA Standards at the classroom teacher and reading specialist levels, under the supervision of a teacher leader.