Reading - Master of Science in Education - non-certification

This multifaceted, online program is designed to meet the needs of educators who are interested in ongoing professional development in reading education.

Master of Science in Education in Reading Program

The online UW‐La Crosse Master of Science in Education in Reading Program is dedicated first and foremost to preparing graduate students who serve communities, families, students, schools and fellow educators as leaders in literacy education.

Through preparation and experiences in developmental and exceptional literacy instruction and assessment, students in the Master of Science in Education in Reading Program develop their knowledge, skills, and dispositions as classroom teachers of reading, as Title I or other Reading teachers, or as Reading Specialists or Consultants/Coaches for schools and/or districts.

Graduates of the Reading Program at UW­‐La Crosse are prepared:

  1. To model current and authentic best practice in K‐12 literacy education;

  2. To seek and identify current research­‐based strategies and resources;

  3. To provide services and support in literacy assessment, diagnosis, and evaluation;

  4. To remain accountable to constituent groups;

  5. And to advocate for students, families, and colleagues.

The Reading Teacher and Reading Specialist programs are aligned to the 2017 Standards for Reading Professionals of the International Literacy Association (ILA) and to WI Teaching Standards (for the Reading Teacher programs) or to WI Administrator Standards (PI 34.003, for the Reading Specialist programs). The ILA standards focus on the knowledge, skills, and dispositions necessary for effective educational practice and highlight contemporary research and evidence-based practices in curriculum, instruction, assessment, and leadership. These recently updated standards address the need for a broader definition of literacy beyond reading to include writing, speaking, listening, viewing, and visually representing in both print and digital realms. Likewise, the UWL Reading Teacher and Reading Specialist curricula are based on current research and best practice in the fields of literacy and reading. The program is delivered in an online format, and is dedicated first and foremost to preparing educators who serve communities, families, students, schools and fellow educators as leaders in literacy education.


Applicants to this program must meet the general graduate admissions requirements and criminal background check. Since no teaching certification is given, no other admission criteria is required.

Criminal background check

The WI Department of Public Instruction (DPI) requires that candidates for admission to a teacher education, administration, or pupil services program successfully pass a criminal background check (CBC) as one criterion for admission. By applying for admission to one of these programs, candidates agree to provide the necessary personal information to UWL in order to initiate their CBC and to complete their portion of the process prior to the deadline specified in their admission letter. Teacher candidates are responsible for all costs associated with their criminal background check(s).


(30 credits)

RDG 600Research Methods in Literacy3
RDG 601Literacy and Language Development for Diverse Learners3
RDG 702Disciplinary Literacy3
RDG 703Literacy Assessment and Instruction3
RDG 704Emergent Literacy3
RDG 714Reading Teacher Practicum3
RDG 715Children's and Adolescent Literature3
Action Research (six credits required)6
Action Research in Literacy
Electives (at least three credits)3
Advanced Research Methods in Literacy
Special Topics Seminar in Reading Education
Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL) Policies and Program Models
TESOL National/International Internship Program
Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL) Methods
Total Credits30

University graduate degree requirements

After being admitted to the program of one's choice, candidates for a graduate degree must:

  1. Complete any preliminary course work and deficiencies.
  2. Complete all courses and other program requirements, including residence requirements prescribed for the degree desired in the respective school or college within a seven-year period from the date of initial enrollment, with the exception of students enrolled in the Student Affairs Administration and Leadership Ed.D. (SAA Ed.D.) graduate program. SAA Ed.D. students must complete all degree requirements within ten years from the time of initial enrollment in the graduate program.
  3. Earn a minimum of 30 credits for a master's degree; 54 credits for a doctorate or post-master's degree. Earn at least one-half of the minimum number of credits required in the program in graduate-only level courses (700, 800, 900, and non-slash 600 level courses). Some UWL graduate programs require more than 30 graduate credits. Please review the individual program requirements listed in the catalog for the exact number of credits required.
  4. Earn a cumulative grade point average of at least 3.00.
  5. Satisfy dissertation, thesis, seminar paper, terminal/graduate projects and internships, or comprehensive examination, where applicable. A dissertation or thesis approved by the committee must be submitted to Graduate & Extended Learning for editorial review and approval by the Dean of Graduate & Extended Learning. The recommended initial submission date for review is two weeks before commencement. Ordinarily, a seminar paper or project report does not have to be approved by the Dean of Graduate & Extended Learning. However, if the seminar paper or project report is to be archived in Murphy Library, the student must follow the same rules as they apply to the dissertation/thesis requiring approval from the Dean of Graduate & Extended Learning. For further research/dissertation/thesis guidelines, see Graduate & Extended Learning.
  6. File a completed "Intent to Graduate" form online via the WINGS Student Center immediately following registration for the final semester or summer term in residence. December graduates and winter intersession should file by May 1. May and summer graduates should file by December 1.
  7. Pay the graduation fee and remove all other indebtedness to the university. Payment of graduation fees does not imply readiness for graduation and does not take the place of applying for graduation.
  8. Complete all requirements within 30 days after the official ending date of a term in order for a degree to be awarded for that term. (See #5 above for separate deadline for written capstone experience.)