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Welcome to Wilkes University » Academics at Wilkes University » Graduate Programs » Academic Programs - Graduate » Graduate Education » Programs » Master of Science in Reading with a Pennsylvania Reading Specialist Certificate
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Master of Science in Reading with a Pennsylvania Reading Specialist Certificate

Breiseth • 800-WILKES U, x4671 (T) • 570-408-4905 (F) • Email

The 36-credit master of science degree in Reading with Pennsylvania Reading Specialist certification is designed for teachers who seek instructional methods for readers of differing abilities or who would like to become a reading specialist. The program is offered in partnership with the National Institute for Professional Practice, a private organization specializing in e-learning for the professional development of educators.

The program is offered in a convenient online format, with required field hours and intern hours completed where students reside.  Students are responsible for locating a school site and making arrangements with a practicing reading specialist with whom they can complete their internship.  

Participants will engage in embedded learning, allowing for immediate application of program coursework to their own classroom. Action research will be employed to explore the use and effectiveness of instructional strategies that help diagnose and remediate reading difficulties.
Learn how to:
  • create learning environments that foster interest and growth in reading;
  • select and implement instructional strategies, curriculum resources and technologies for readers of all proficiency levels;
  • communicate with students about their strengths, areas needing improvement and ways to achieve improvement;
  • develop Individualize Educational Programs (IEP) for students with severe literacy problems;
  • recommend books and technologies to increase interest, appreciation, and growth in reading and writing;
  • learn to develop reading interventions and collect data for the RtII Process; 
  • develop and administer assessments to measure reading proficiency;
  • instruct in collaboration with other professionals in your district, including existing reading specialists.


Certificate Options

Candidates will be recommended for Pennsylvania Reading Specialist certification upon successful completion of the program and the PDE required reading certification exam (Praxis 5301). Students should follow the course sequence listed in the Graduate Bulletin in order to complete all necessary requirements.

To begin taking courses that lead toward this degree, you must first submit an application to the Wilkes University graduate program and then register for courses. Please note the course registration number (CRN) of the graduate course you would like to enroll in before you apply online since you will be given an immediate opportunity to register for a course as soon as you submit your online application. You can find the CRN on the current graduate education schedule listed under “Related Resources” on the upper right of this page.

To apply:

Complete the online application. If you have never applied to a Wilkes University graduate program, you will be required to submit a $35 application fee.

All students:  Must complete the entire 36-credit program to be awarded the MS Ed degree. There is no certification-only option for this program.
Pennsylvania students holding a valid PA teaching certificate:  Eligible to apply for Reading Specialist K-12 certification in Pennsylvania.
Eligible out-of-state students holding a valid PA teaching certificate: Eligible to apply for Reading Specialist K-12 certification in Pennsylvania.
Eligible out-of-state students holding valid teaching certificates NOT in PA:  NOT eligible for certification in Pennsylvania and are advised to investigate certification requirements of their licensure state.
Out-of-state students must contact the Program Coordinator to determine eligibility – Anne Butler (570) 408-6814(570) 408-6814; anne.butler@wilkes.edu

To be accepted you must mail the following additional documents:
  • Official transcripts from any undergraduate institutions you attended
  • Copy of your teaching certificate
  • Two completed Graduate Recommendation Forms

Qualifications for Admission include:

  • Applicants must possess and provide evidence of a baccalaureate degree from an accredited institution, and Instruction I, Pennsylvania teaching certificate.
  • Upon completion of the online application you will be given a Wilkes Identification Number (WIN) and other information that will allow you to log in to the Wilkes Portal.The Portal gives students the ability to register for courses online, view and print grades and unofficial transcripts, make use of the online library services and see other information that is pertinent to Wilkes University graduate students.
  • Be sure to make note of your WIN and other important information. You can always log into the Wilkes University Portal by going to mywilkes.wilkes.edu.To help keep track of the program requirements you can download a pdf-formatted Reading Specialist Program checklist/Course Offering.

To learn more about Wilkes graduate education programs and see a link to the current schedule, please visit
www.wilkes.edu/GradEd. Questions about admissions should be directed to Holly Banks-Fry at holly.fry@wilkes.edu 800-WILKESU800-WILKESU ext. 5535. Academic advisement questions should be emailed to Anne Butler, Program Coordinator at anne.butler@wilkes.edu





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