Master of Science in Literacy

Help Students Discover the World as a Literacy Professional

The Master of Science in Literacy programs are designed for the certified, working teacher. Keuka College offers two different master of science degree programs in literacy. While both programs provide opportunity for certification as a literacy professional, one is focused on birth through 6th grade, and the other is focused on grades 5 - 12.


Built by Teachers, for Teachers

Although the program is offered online, there are plenty of opportunities for live interaction with professors. The program is designed by teachers and around a teacher's schedule

Get Certified

You’ll complete 34 credit hours of coursework, leading to the ability to apply for initial New York state certification as a literacy specialist. The coursework provides the opportunity to meet the standards set by New York state and the International Literacy Association.

Build Your Knowledge Base

The curriculum requires extensive research and demonstration of professional competence throughout the program. You’ll be challenged to achieve advanced levels of theoretical and practical knowledge. Coursework culminates with an independent, mentored capstone literacy project commensurate with master’s-level work.

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Guide to Moving Forward

Get more information to make the decision that's right for you:

  • Featured courses and program outcomes
  • Admission requirements
  • Tuition and financial aid information

Every course in the program is online and asynchronous, allowing you to balance your academic pursuits with the increasing demands of teaching.

Online Format

  • Designed to enhance teachers' knowledge about contemporary theories and research-based practices in literacy. 
  • While fully online, the asynchronous format provides students with options to meet with classmates. 
  • Students can complete the program in 1 year.


With Keuka College’s master’s degree in literacy, you’ll gain the skills you need to make a life changing difference in a child’s ability to read and write. 


You'll need to earn 30 credits to receive your M.S. in Literacy from Keuka College.

In addition to New York state teaching certification, applicants must have earned a bachelor’s degree from an accredited institution, with a minimum cumulative 3.0 G.P.A., and at least a 3.0 G.P.A. in the major field of study.

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12 Grade-Level Courses


You will earn 12 credits completing courses that will prepare you to deliver high quality literacy instruction and offer proactive literacy leadership in B-6 or 5-12 educational settings.

18 Core Courses


The curriculum is based on three central and integrated themes—research, application of research-based best practices, and reflection on the efficacy of instructional practice and teacher decision-making. 

Core Courses

You'll need to complete 30 credits to complete your Master of Literacy degree. 

You’ll work closely with extraordinary faculty who have designed this program with working teachers in mind. 

EDU-501: Introduction to Educational Research

An introduction to the rationale and procedures of educational research, placing primary emphasis on literacy research. The intent of the course is to help the student become an intelligent consumer of research, and to develop an appreciation for the importance and utility of research. Students will develop critical skills needed as consumers and producers of research. Topics include: the nature and purposes of research, critiquing and evaluation of research, reviewing research literature, valid measurement issues, the use of statistics in research, and types of research. Content from this course will lay the foundation for all courses throughout the program.

EDU-530: Theoretical and Social Found of Literacy

The focus of this course is to lay the groundwork for making evidence-based instructional literacy decisions, and to begin the process of appreciating the need to communicate complex ideas to multiple stakeholders in literacy education. To accomplish these goals, students will: understand current theoretical perspectives in literacy education and literacy acquisition (such as the Piagetian and Vygotskian theories); understand the impact of research and diversity on literacy education; explore the impact literacy and lack of literacy have on individuals; and explore the social-cultural implications surrounding the competing theories of literacy education. To accomplish these goals, the course examines: the evolution of theories of learning that apply to literacy; research that has contributed to evolving models and definitions of reading; and the contributions of theories of literacy (reading and writing) as language-based processes. The course examines this information in the context of social, cultural, and political milieu of education in the United States. An important factor in understanding and using theories is the ability to recognize one's own history, biases and beliefs, and how these impact one's own interpretation and implementation of knowledge. This course begins with students engaging in a self-reflective review of their own literacy learning and beliefs, and how that history and those beliefs affect their literacy education beliefs.

EDU-531: Assessment-Based Instruction I

This course provides an in-depth exploration of teaching methods and materials relevant to literacy instruction for the emergent and developing readers in today's diverse classrooms. This course will examine both the nature and function of formal and informal assessment processes in literacy instruction and best instructional practice that emanates from this assessment. In order to both design literacy instructional programs and to assess student learning, it is vital to be able to place students along a developmental continuum and identify students' proficiencies and areas needing strengthening. Awareness of the influence of culture, class, gender, and context on literacy acquisition informs the teacher's knowledge base when considering this developmental continuum. Language development and its relationship to literacy acquisition will also be examined. Teachers will learn a wide range of instructional practices, strategies, and methods to support reading and writing instruction. Teachers will also demonstrate competency in using a wide range of formal and informal assessment tools and practices that provide data used to craft appropriate teaching strategies for addressing student strengths and needs. Teachers will develop the skills necessary to ensure that students experience developmentally appropriate growth in literacy skills. In addition, teachers develop skills to identify students who are not making developmentally appropriate growth, and also learn the appropriate strategies to recover those skills.

Keuka College has helped thousands of students like you earn an affordable degree. Estimate your costs, explore financial aid options, and talk with an admissions counselor today.

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Affording Your Master of Science in Literacy Degree

A degree is an investment in your future and your family that has everlasting benefits. Here are a number of ways to make your degree even more affordable.

Financial Aid
Scholarships, state and federal grants, employer tuition remission, and military benefits are financial aid options that may be available to you.

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Credit for What You Already Know
From military and corporate training to subject-specific examinations, you could save thousands of dollars because of what you already know.

Learn How

A Literacy Degree Isn't Just for Reading Teachers

Becoming a certified literacy professional is about more than just teaching children and adolescents to read. With a Master of Science in Literacy, you can:

  • Serve as the expert on literacy, assessment, and reading intervention programs at your school.
  • Coach other teachers in becoming more confident in their own literacy instruction in any content area by using evidence-based practices.
  • Help students with their unique needs in areas of developmental, social and cultural adaptations, and utilizing their specific strengths and abilities to lead them to become lifelong learners by building a strong literacy foundation – a skill they’ll need for the rest of their lives.
  • Earn an additional New York State certification.
portrait of Aspyn

From this program, I believe I have become a knowledgeable and confident literacy specialist who has much to offer the professional field of literacy development and education.

Aspyn Landis

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