Masters in. Literacy Education

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1 Masters in Literacy Education New York University Steinhardt School of Education, Mary Brabeck, Dean Robert Cohen, Chair, Department of Teaching and Learning Jane Ashdown, Vice Chair, Department of Teaching and Learning Cynthia McCallister, Director, Program in Literacy Education Faculty: Jane Ashdown Patricia Cooper Maureen Barbieri Sarah Beck Cynthia McCallister Oliver Patterson Trika Smith-Burke Updated Spring, 2005

2 Masters Program in Literacy Education The Department of Teaching and Learning offers Master s degrees in Literacy Education, Birth through Grade 6 and Grades 5 through 12. These programs provide certified classroom teachers with the opportunity to earn the New York State Literacy Specialist Certificate. These curricula are designed to prepare classroom teachers at the early childhood, elementary levels, or content area teachers at middle school and high school levels to address the needs of all of their students by integrating strategic teaching of reading and writing throughout their specialty. The program also focuses on the role of the literacy specialist in the whole-school context and assists each student in developing the competence and the confidence needed to assume such a role. Full-time students can finish in an accelerated 12-month format, including summer. Part-time students can finish in two years, including two summers. Program Philosophy The literacy master s programs represent literacy as the means by which people think, learn, and communicate through reading, writing, listening, and speaking. The curricula are designed to help teachers understand the principles of language and literacy learning and the development of diverse learners, especially those who are experiencing difficulty with literacy learning, across developmental levels, academic disciplines, and social and cultural contexts. These programs support the development of teaching expertise in the role of literacy specialist and in a particular area of specialization within the curriculum selected by students. For example, the integration of strategic teaching of reading and writing within different content areas (e.g., social studies, science, or math) or clinical work in literacy could be areas of specialization. The course of study builds on the participants professional experiences, involves the application of theory to practice and vice versa, and stresses the use of data for decision making. Similarly the curriculum for children in schools builds on the language and literacy learning which students bring to school and ongoing observation of their learning in order to closely match instruction to student level in order to assist them in achieving system standards. Finally, two practicums at two different age levels within each program and a course which focuses on the responsibilities of literacy specialists allow the candidates to experience leadership and teaching responsibilities of role of the literacy specialist. Program Design One master s degree program is for candidates interested in students from birth through grade 6 (LITB); the other, from grade 5 through grade 12 (LITC). To apply for these programs a candidate must hold either initial or permanent certification in teaching at the appropriate level (see section on admission requirements for details). On completion of a program the candidate is eligible for New York State certification as a literacy specialist for the appropriate grade levels (see above). Each program also serves to deepen classroom teachers understanding of literacy processes, issues and pedagogy. Both programs can be taken on a full- or part-time basis. Each program requires two electives, and the Steinhardt School of Education provides a wealth of choices for this 2

3 requirement including courses from areas such as bilingual education, special education, drama education, educational communication and technology, media ecology, English education, educational administration, or educational psychology. Literacy Education, birth-grade 6 (LITB) (34 credits) The Program is offered in two phases. Phase I includes Literacy Education I Early Childhood/Childhood: Reading Practices E , Literacy Education II Early Childhood/Childhood: Writing Practices E , Language and Literacy Development E , Reading and Writing: Foundations E , and Texts, Tools, and Culture E Phase II includes Literacy Assessment E , Literacy of the Special Learner E , and the Supervised Practicum in Early Childhood and Childhood E (two placements, at two different instructional levels for 2 credits each) and the Organization and Supervision of Literacy Programs E The program requires two electives that can be taken at any point in the program. Literacy Education, grades 5-12 (LITC) (34 credits) The courses are offered in two phases. Phase I includes Literacy Education I Middle Childhood/Adolescence: Reading Practices E , Literacy Education II Middle Childhood/Adolescence: Writing Practices E , Language and Literacy Development E , Reading and Writing E , Text, Tools, and Culture E Phase II includes Literacy Assessment E , Literacy of the Special Learner E , and a Supervised Practicum in Middle Childhood and Adolescence E (two placements, one at each level for 2 credits each), and the Organization and Supervision of Literacy Programs E The program requires two electives that can be taken at any point in the program. Dual Special Education/Literacy Specialist Certification For information on two new dual programs that prepare students for certification as literacy specialists in special education either at the early childhood (birth-grade 2) or childhood (grades 1-6) levels, please see page 207 in this bulletin under Special Education. Financial Opportunities study. Loans and scholarships may be available for qualified applicants to master s Advisement and Program Planning Once admitted you will consult with the program advisor, Amy Lui, at , to plan a program of study. At that time you will be assigned to a faculty advisor who will be able to offer further guidance in terms of program and career-related decisions. 3

4 Admissions Requirements Candidates must hold an appropriate teaching certificate as a prerequisite for admission to these M.A. programs. For admission to the literacy program, birth-grade 6 (LITB), candidates must hold at least a provisional certificate in early childhood/elementary education or an initial certificate in either early childhood education or childhood education. For admission to the literacy program, grades 5-12 (LITC), candidates must hold at least a provisional certificate in middle or secondary education or an initial certificate in either middle childhood or adolescence education. Candidates holding an out-of-state base certificate must apply for a comparable New York State certificate with the New York State Education Department (see prior to program completion in order to be recommended for the literacy certification in New York State. Contact the NYU School of Education Office of Graduate Admissions at to learn more about admissions to the program. Career Opportunities The graduates of this program will qualify for literacy specialist positions. Those graduating from the LITB program work in early childhood, preschool, private, and public schools through grade 6 either as teachers with special expertise teaching in reading and writing or as literacy specialists. Those graduating from the LITC program work at the middle school or high school levels as teachers in particular content area with special expertise in integrating the teaching of language and literacy into their curricula or as literacy specialists. Graduates will also be qualified to work in after-school programs, clinical settings in hospitals and community centers, new educational companies that focus on literacy learning, and in private tutoring practice. In addition, this degree provides excellent background for positions in the educational publishing industry that concentrates on the development of literacy materials and literacy assessment. For more information about the Masters in Literacy Education Program, please contact: Professor Cynthia McCallister, Program Director Suite 600, East Building 239 Greene Street New York University New York, NY

5 Program Requirements I. Content Core (15 credits) E (3 cr.) Language and Literacy Development E (3 cr.) Reading and Writing: Foundations E or E (3 cr.) Literacy Education I: Reading Practices in Early Childhood/Childhood or Literacy Education I: Middle Childhood/Adolescence E or E (3 cr.) Literacy Education II: Writing Practices in Early Childhood/Childhood or Literacy Education II: Middle Childhood/Adolescence E (3 cr.) Texts, Tools and Culture II. Intervention Core (10 credits) E (3 cr.) Literacy Assessment Take either of the following: E (4. cr.) Supervised Practicum Early Childhood/Childhood E (4 cr.) Supervised Practicum Middle Childhood/Adolescence E (3 cr.) Literacy for the Special Learner E (3 cr.) Organization and Supervision of Literacy Programs III. Electives (6 cr.) Total Credits: 34 5

6 Summer Elective (3 cr.) Full-time, sample program Fall E Language Development (3 cr.) E or E Literacy Education I: Reading Practices (3 cr.) E or E Literacy Education II: Writing Practices (3 cr.) E Reading and Writing: Foundations (3 cr.) Spring E Texts, Tools and Culture (3 cr.) E (3 cr.) Literacy Assessment E (3 cr.) Literacy for the Special Learner Take either of the following: E (4. cr.) Supervised Practicum Early Childhood/Childhood or E (4 cr.) Supervised Practicum Middle Childhood/Adolescence Summer E (3 cr.) Organization and Supervision of Literacy Programs Elective (3 cr.) Part-time, sample program Fall I E Language Development (3 cr.) E Reading and Writing: Foundations (3 cr.) Spring I E Texts, Tools and Culture (3 cr.) E or E Literacy Education I: Reading Practices (3 cr.) Summer I Elective (3 cr.) Fall II E or E Literacy Education II: Writing Practices (3 cr.) Elective (3 cr.) Spring II E Literacy for the Special Learner (3 cr.) E Literacy Assessment (3 cr.) Summer II E (3 cr.) Organization and Supervision of Literacy Programs Take one of the following repeated twice for a total of 4 credits: E (2. cr.) Supervised Practicum Early Childhood/Childhood or E (2 cr.) Supervised Practicum Middle Childhood/Adolescence 6

7 Literacy M.A. Program Worksheet Semester Taken Course I. Content Core (15 credits) E (3 cr.) Language Development E (3 cr.) Reading and Writing: Foundations E or E (3 cr.) Literacy Education I: Reading Practices E or E (3 cr.) Literacy Education II: Writing Practices E (3 cr.) Texts, Tools and Culture II. Intervention Core (11 credits) E (3 cr.) Literacy Assessment E (3 cr.) Literacy for the Special Learner Take either of the following for a total of 4 credits: E (4. cr.) Supervised Practicum: Early Childhood/Childhood E (4 cr.) Supervised Practicum: Middle Childhood/Adolescence III. Culminating Experience (3 cr.) E (3 cr.) Administration and Supervision of Literacy Program Course: III. Electives (6 cr.) Course: 7

8 Course Descriptions Language and Literacy Development E hours: 3 points. Survey of theories of oral language acquisition and development in first and second languages and the role of language as a foundation for literacy. Special emphasis on the role of language in reading and writing development. Attention to the role of talk across the curriculum and a survey of principles and practices for supporting a language-rich curriculum. Methods of assessing and responding to individual language differences. The relationship between linguistic diversity and academic achievement will be explored. Literacy Assessment E hours: 3 points. Spring. Prerequisites: E or E , E , E , and E Survey of principles and practices of formal and informal literacy assessment. Critical examination of test types, methods of test construction and interpretation, and large-scale literacy evaluation. Review of measurement concepts and psychometric principles. Use of dynamic assessment to inform the design, monitoring, and evaluation of literacy instruction. The social implications of testing are explored with a focus on the politics of testing and the relationship between testing practices, learner diversity, and system decision making. Literacy Education I: Reading Practices in Early Childhood and Childhood E hours: 3 points. Fall and spring. Survey of reading process theory and related reading assessment and instruction practices. Study of reading development in early childhood and childhood. Focus on teaching comprehension, study skills, word identification, vocabulary development, phonemic awareness and phonics skills. Special emphasis on individual differences and potential difficulties in reading development and methods for planning reading instruction for struggling or reluctant readers. Literacy Education II: Writing Practices in Early Childhood and Childhood E hours: 3 points. Fall and spring. Survey of writing process theory and related assessment and instruction practices with a focus on standards-based curriculum planning. Students plan and take part in writing activities in order to acquire pedagogical knowledge in writing. Special emphasis on writing development through early childhood and childhood. Exploration of the relationship between reading, writing and literacy development. Literacy Education I: Reading Practices in Middle Childhood and Adolescence E hours: 3 points. Fall and spring. Survey of reading process theory and related reading assessment and instruction practices. Study of reading development in middle childhood and adolescence. Focus on teaching comprehension, study skills, word identification, vocabulary development, and, when necessary, phonemic awareness and phonics skills. Special emphasis on individual differences and potential difficulties in reading development and methods for planning reading instruction for struggling or reluctant readers. Literacy Education II: Writing Practices in Middle Childhood and Adolescence E hours: 3 points. Fall and spring. Survey of writing process theory and related assessment and instruction practices with a focus on standards-based curriculum planning. Students plan and take part in writing activities in order to acquire pedagogical knowledge in writing. Special emphasis on writing development through 8

9 middle childhood and adolescence. Exploration of the relationship between reading, writing and literacy development. Reading and Writing: Foundations E hours: 3 points. Fall, Spring. An examination of reading and writing education from historical, theoretical, critical, and pedagogical perspectives. Course questions include the role of literacy in American history, current views of best practice in literacy, political and partisan influences on how literacy is taught, and the relationship between literacy education and social justice. Research studies that have shaped literacy instruction in the last century are considered. Text, Tools, and Culture E hours: 3 points. Fall. Children s and adolescent literature as primary tools in the teaching of reading comprehension from a critical perspective. Strategies for locating, selecting, and evaluating resources and materials for use in classroom literacy programs, and selecting texts that appeal to reluctant readers and students with special needs. Emphasis is placed on teaching children s literature multiculturally. Organization and Supervision of Literacy Programs E hours: 3 points. Summer Exploration of the role of the literacy specialist within the school community with special attention to professional development, literacy program implementation and supervision, and student assessment responsibilities. The range of functions of the literacy specialist will be considered in light of how these are impacted by the changing needs of the school, community and political exigencies. Field participation is required. Prerequisite: E or permission. Supervised Practicum Early Childhood/Childhood E hours: 2 points (repeatable for 4 points). Spring and Summer. Prerequisite: E Designed to refine proficiency in organizing and enhancing literacy programs. Focus on collaboration and communication with other school or organizational personnel. Developing literacy curricula and instruction that is informed by student assessment. Emphasis on communicating assessment results to parents, caregivers, and other school personnel. Students take two 2-point placements at the early childhood and childhood levels under supervision. These placements are coordinated in partnership with local school districts and community-based organizations. Supervised Practicum Middle Childhood/Adolescence E hours: 2 points (repeatable for 4 points). Spring and Summer. Prerequisite: E Designed to refine proficiency in organizing and enhancing literacy programs. Focus on collaboration and communication with other school or organizational personnel. Developing literacy curricula and instruction that is informed by student assessment. Emphasis on communicating assessment results to parents, caregivers, and other school personnel. Students take two 2-point placements at the middle childhood and adolescent levels under supervision. These field experiences are coordinated in partnership with local school districts and communitybased organizations. Literacy for the Special Learner E hours: 3 points. Spring.Prerequisites: E or E , E , E , and E or permission of instructor. 9

10 Exploration of diverse cognitive, neurological, and emotional characteristics and how these manifest in learners literacy development. A focus on the atypical development and educational needs of students who experience difficulties in acquiring the literacy skills of listening, speaking, reading, and writing. Overview of the practices of individual assessment of student literacy performance and teaching interventions for students, with a special focus on dyslexia. 10

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