M.Ed. in Literacy with Literacy Specialist P-12 Endorsement

Would you like to be able to help struggling readers achieve and plan for literacy achievement school-wide? The Master of Education (M.Ed.) in Literacy with Literacy Specialist P-12 Endorsement may be just what you are looking for to enhance your career!

The program is designed for certified teachers who plan to seek a master's degree. The M.Ed. in Literacy with Literacy Specialist P-12 Endorsement was designed in collaboration with P-12 classroom teachers, district specialists, and university faculty for preparing reading specialists/literacy coaches. The program leads to a Kentucky "Literacy Specialist P-12" endorsement.

For more comprehensive information about literacy program options, visit the CEHD's Literacy Education website.

Program Highlights

What makes the UofL M.Ed. in Literacy with Literacy Specialist P-12 Endorsement stand out from the rest?

The program:

  • Prepares candidates to be a reading specialist (work with students who are struggling readers) as well as a literacy coach (work with adults to advance literacy school-wide)
  • Meets the International Reading Association Standards for Reading Professionals (2010)
  • Has a strong emphasis on the balance among knowledge, skills, and strategies
  • Prepares candidates to work with students in literacy from birth through grade 12
  • Uses the Common Core Standards as a guide
  • Is taught by nationally recognized faculty in collaboration with practitioners
  • Focuses on meeting the needs of diverse learners
  • Emphasizes coaching and mentoring colleagues
  • Places your classroom and school as the focus of course discussions and assessments

Related Links

Program Curriculum

The curriculum for the M.Ed. in Literacy with Literacy Specialist P-12 Endorsement is based on the International Reading Association Standards for Reading Professionals (2010) for Reading Specialists/Literacy Coaches. Candidates complete a 36 credit hour program, which includes 24 hours of literacy coursework and 6 hours of supervised practicum.

Detailed requirements for completing this degree are provided in the Graduate Catalog.

Note: Meeting GRE score and GPA minimums does not guarantee admission to the program.

How to Apply

Students may apply to the program by first going to the School of Interdisciplinary and Graduate Studies web site.

Minimum of one year of teaching experience required for admission to the degree program.

Students must also submit the following information:

  • Official transcripts with a GPA of 2.75 in the Bachelor's degree and a 3.0 GPA or higher for graduate work.

    Applicants who have attended a college or university outside of the United States are also required to submit an evaluation of their transcript through either WES (World Education Services) or ECE (Educational Credential Evaluators). Please note that transcript evaluations can sometimes take several weeks.

    Please have transcripts sent to:
    School of Interdisciplinary and Graduate Studies
    University of Louisville
    Louisville, KY 40292

    If transcripts are sent electronically,
    please have them sent to the following e-mail: gradadm @ louisville.edu

  • For GRE scores prior to August 1, 2011, a minimum combined (verbal and quantitative) score of an 800 is required for unconditional admission. For GRE scores taken August 1, 2011 and after, please refer to the table below.
    SectionExceeds expectationMeets expectationFalls below expectationsDoes not meet expections
    Verbal157 (73%) and above147 (32%) to 156 (70%)143 (18%) to 146 (28%)142 (15%) and below
    Quantitative153 (53%) and above142 (13%) to 152 (49%)138 (5%) to 141 (11%)137 (3%) and below
    Please note: when submitting GRE scores through ETS, have scores sent to the general University of Louisville code, 1838.
    Need help preparing for the GRE? Sign up for a GRE Information Session.
  • Two letters of recommendation (use graduate recommendation forms [PDF])
  • Current resume
  • Teaching certificate or statement of eligibility
  • A personal statement of no more than 500 words, along with the Personal Statement Cover Sheet [PDF]
  • Application materials, including the personal statement, will be evaluated using the Ideas to Action Unit Dispositions Rubric [PDF], and Ideas to Action Holistic Construct Rubric [PDF] by a faculty committee
  • Signed statement: Technology and Code of Ethics Form [PDF]
  • TOEFL is required of all foreign students from countries in which English is not the native language. Students holding a baccalaureate or advanced degree from an accredited institution in the U.S. are exempt from this requirement.

Additional Admission Requirements

Upon admission to the program, students will be assigned a faculty advisor and will work collaboratively with that advisor to complete the following components. The materials below will be submitted electronically through LiveText.

Information about the Personal Statement

The personal statement is the applicant's opportunity to demonstrate his/her writing ability as well as provide a personal introduction to the admissions screening committee. The personal statement should be no more than 500 words, and should be double-spaced and word-processed. Applicants are encouraged to proofread their writing, and to submit the best work possible. The attached rubric (Ideas to Action Holistic Construct Rubric [PDF]) is provided to help applicants understand how their writing will be evaluated.

In developing the personal statement, applicants are encouraged to identify and describe personal characteristics, abilities, beliefs and goals as well as diverse experiences with children and adolescents which will contribute to their success as an outstanding educator. Applicants should also review the College of Education and Human Development's Conceptual Framework, reflecting on the concepts of inquiry, action, and advocacy. Applicants should consider the following questions:

  • How do you demonstrate intellectual curiosity?
  • How do you demonstrate a commitment to helping students compete in a digital world?
  • How do you develop positive relationships and work collaboratively with peers, teachers, and others?
  • How do you demonstrate the interpersonal skills necessary to do the daily work of teaching?
  • Can you give examples of your commitment to diversity, equity and social justice?
  • Can you identify characteristics critical to successful teaching (such as dependability, initiative, organization) and give examples of how you exhibit those traits?

If you have questions about applying to the program, please contact Aaron Phillips, Assistant Director for Education Academic Services, at 502-852-3214.

Contact Us

Learn more about our program faculty.

Lori Norton-Meier
Department of Early Childhood and Elementary Education
College of Education and Human Development
University of Louisville Louisville, KY 40292
Office: 502-852-1316

Literacy Faculty

Career Pathways and Endorsement

Candidates who complete the M.Ed. in Literacy with Literacy Specialist P-12 Endorsement apply for the state Literacy Specialist P-12 Endorsement.

The Kentucky Literacy Specialist P-12 Endorsement prepares you to:

  • help students of any age learn to be successful readers and writers
  • help struggling readers achieve
  • be an effective school or district literacy coach.

Candidates who complete the MEd in Literacy with Literacy Specialist P-12 Endorsement apply for state endorsement in Kentucky Reading and Writing P-12.

In addition to the financial aid opportunities offered by the University, the College of Education & Human Development also has information about financial aid.

Other financial aid opportunities available include graduate assistantships and other employment opportunities.

Supervising and Resource Teachers

In recognition of valuable service to the preparation of teachers and the need for all teachers to have continual professional growth, a supervising teacher or a resource teacher for teacher interns may, with prior approval of the course-offering institution, take a maximum of six (6) credit hours per term at any public postsecondary institution and pay no tuition. The postsecondary institution shall waive the tuition up to a maximum of six (6) credit hours.

To apply, you must complete the Tuition Waiver Certification for Supervising and Resource Teachers Application [PDF]. It should be completed by the supervising teacher, certified by their principal, and returned to our office. Return the form to the Student Financial Aid Office at U of L, attention: Wesley Partin.

Eligibility: 6 credit hours of tuition benefits for each semester served as a full responsibility supervising or resource teacher, or 3 credit hours of tuition benefits for each semester served as a shared supervising or resource teacher. Students may exercise the tuition waiver option up to twelve months following the assignment. Tuition benefits are paid directly to the University of Louisville.

I have some credit hours from another program/university. Can the credit be transferred?

Once you are admitted to the program, you may request to transfer up to 6 credit hours if your UofL advisor approves the request. Transfer requests are then submitted to the School of Interdisciplinary and Graduate Studies.

What degrees or endorsements do I receive if I complete the UofL M.Ed. in Literacy with Literacy Specialist P-12 Endorsement?

Successful candidates will graduate with a Master of Education (M.Ed.) in Literacy with Literacy Specialist P-12 Endorsement and receive a Literacy Specialist P-12 Endorsement. If you already have a Master's degree, you will need to complete an additional master's degree to receive this endorsement. If this is a second master's degree, you may apply for Rank I hours as you complete the degree.

How long does it take to complete the MEd program?

The program can be completed in as few as two years or as many as six years.

I am a teacher and am in my school all day. When are courses offered?

All courses are offered outside the practicing teacher's day (evening, Saturday, summer). The program is designed so that many assignments are classroom or school-based. Practicum classes are completed during the summer session (Literacy Specialist Practicum) and in your own school (Literacy Coach Practicum).

Where are courses being delivered?

Courses are offered at UofL Belknap Campus and JCPS locations. A limited number of online courses are available at the present time.

I am not teaching at the present time. Will I be able to complete the program?

Yes. The program is designed so that many assignments are classroom or school-based. If you are not currently in a school, you will be placed in an approved setting to complete the assignments.