Jul 21, 2024  
2019-2020 Graduate Catalog 
2019-2020 Graduate Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Reading, M.Ed.

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General Program Information

Graduate School Contact:
Fiona Goodyear; goodyear@etsu.edu; (423) 439-6148

Karin J. Keith, Ph.D., Department Chair
Graduate Coordinator

409B Warf-Pickel Hall
Box 70684
(423) 439-7910
e-mail: keithkj@etsu.edu

Faculty: Ed Dwyer; LaShay Jennings; Karin Keith; Renee Moran; Natalia Ward.

The graduate program in reading education is designed to provide the necessary educational experiences for persons who are either preparing to or are already involved in working toward enhancing the reading, writing, and oral language competencies of children and adults. Candidates are prepared to assume leadership roles in reading education by serving as special reading teachers, clinicians, diagnosticians, program coordinators, reading specialists, and reading supervisors.

The graduate program meets standards of excellence for reading programs of the International Reading Association. Graduate program faculty and candidates work extensively in area schools to provide active practicum experiences.

The M.Ed. in Reading is not an initial licensure program. Persons seeking an initial endorsement to teach in Tennessee should enter one of the initial licensure programs.


In addition to general admission requirements for the School of Graduate Studies, persons seeking admission to the Master of Education in Reading must have an overall undergraduate GPA of 3.0 or above on a 4.0 scale.

Applicants who seek the Reading Specialist endorsement should also provide the following:

  • three (3) letters of recommendation (at least one from a principal or other individual who serves in a supervisory role)
  • a current résumé; and
  • a copy of current teaching license.

An oral or written interview may be requested by the program coordinator in specific cases.

Assessment of a candidate’s performance shall be made by a committee established for that purpose consisting of a minimum of three (3) ETSU graduate faculty members. Experts from outside the university are also permitted to serve on such committees, with approval from the Dean of the School of Graduate Studies. The committee’s written assessment of the candidate’s performance shall become a part of the candidate’s permanent academic records.

After completing eighteen (18) credits, candidates will complete a written comprehensive examination designed to assess their content knowledge of literacy curriculum, instruction, and assessment. Three (3) Reading Faculty with Graduate Faculty status will blind score the written comprehensive examination. Students may

(1) pass;
(2) fail with no opportunity for re-examination or re-evaluation; or
(3) fail with an opportunity for further study and re-examination by the committee.

When a candidate fails with an opportunity for further study and re-examination by the committee, the candidate will have the opportunity to engage in further study of evidence-based reading curriculum, instruction, and assessment. Once that condition is met, the candidate will re-write a second examination and three (3) Reading Faculty with Graduate Faculty status will blind score the written examination. If the candidate does not pass the written examination after the 2nd writing, the candidate will fail with no opportunity for re-examination or re-evaluation.

Degree Requirements - Graduate majors in reading education will be permitted to elect the thesis option (comprised of coursework and required formal thesis) with a minimum requirement of 33 credits, or the course option (completely comprised of coursework, no formal thesis required) with a minimum requirement of 36 credits

Reading, M.Ed. Degree Requirements: 33-36 credits

Core Requirements 24 credits
Advisor Approved Electives 6-12 credits
Thesis/Non-Thesis 0-3 credits
TOTAL 33-36 credits

Thesis: The thesis option requires 33 total credits which includes 6 advisor approved electives.

Non-Thesis: The project option requires 36 total credits which includes 12 advisor approved electives.

Reading Specialist Endorsement: The program requires 36 total credits.

Thesis Option: 9 credits

  • READ 5960 - Thesis (3-6 credits)  
  • READ or READ-related electives (6 credits)

Non-Thesis Option: 12 credits

  • READ or READ-related electives (12 credits)


Tennessee Reading Specialist PreK - 12-The East Tennessee State University Clemmer College of Education Master of Education in Reading Education enables individuals to acquire the knowledge and skills stipulated by the Tennessee Licensure Standards for Reading Specialist, PreK-12. Most students who participate in our Reading M.Ed. program are practicing licensed teachers, and those aspiring to specialist licensure must have at least three (3) years successful classroom experience as such. Graduate students, working toward qualification as licensed reading specialists in Tennessee, will be advised to take a specific set of courses that fulfills both the East Tennessee State University requirements for the Reading M.A. degree and the requirements outlined by the Tennessee Standards for Licensure as Reading Specialist, PreK-12.

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