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  • Reading Specialist Certification


    The Reading Specialist Certification program aims to prepare students to work with individuals with a range of reading abilities and needs by introducing them to multisensory approaches to reading instruction, and to a variety of diagnostic tools for planning and evaluation purposes, as well as to monitor student performance and growth. Students will learn effective reading strategies, and become exceptionally skilled and qualified to support students with reading needs as well as be able to provide leadership and coaching in the area of literacy to teachers and schools.

    Designed for teachers who already possess an Instructional I certificate in PA or another State, the program aims to help students understand how literacy is a meaning making process, to offer different ways of exploring children's responses to a variety of texts, to enrich reading and writing in content area classrooms, and to teach them how to incorporate research-based approaches. Students will graduate with a Reading Specialist Certification as well as a WILSON™ Level I certificate.

    The WILSON™ Multisensory Reading Instruction Level Certificate will allow students to learn the intricacies of the English language, to teach a direct instruction multi-sensory language-based program, and to support students who need extra reading support. Students who have obtained a WILSON™ Level I certificate within the past five years are eligible to transfer up to 10 credits towards the Reading Specialist Certification. Learn more about the WILSON™ language program.

    Graduates of the Reading Specialist Certificate program will have the opportunity to become reading specialists, reading interventionists, literacy coaches, literacy mentors, literacy program directors, and literacy specialists working in a community-based literacy center.

    Program Features

    • Drexel University is the first institution to include the core WILSON™ Level I courses as a part of the core requirements. Students will receive a WILSON™Level I certificate in addition to a PA Reading Specialist Certification.
    • Highly qualified faculty who have expertise in online teaching and are practitioner-scholars in the field of literacy.
    • Fully accredited by the Middle States Commission on Higher Education. Drexel's teacher education programs are approved by the Pennsylvania Department of Education.
    • Flexible, completely online degree program that fits easily into your busy work and personal schedule.
    • Credits transfer into the MS in Teaching, Learning, and Curriculum program

    State restrictions may apply to some programs. Learn more.


    This program is organized into four 10-week quarters per year (as opposed to the traditional two semester system) which means you can take more courses in a shorter time period. One semester credit is equivalent to 1.5 quarter credits.

    Required Courses 
    EDLS 550Theories of Reading and Writing3.0
    EDLS 555Understanding Literacy through Sociocultural Perspectives3.0
    EDLS 560Reading and Writing in the Content Areas (7-12)3.0
    EDLS 565Constructing Meaning through Reading and Writing3.0
    EDLS 570Literacy and Evaluation3.0
    EDLS 575Responding to Children's and Young Adult Literature3.0
    EDLS 620Applied Methods in Multisensory Reading Instruction1.0
    EDLS 622Basic Word Study I3.0
    EDLS 623Basic Word Study II3.0
    EDLS 624Multisensory Practicum I1.0
    EDLS 625Multisensory Practicum II1.0
    EDLS 626Multisensory Practicum III1.0
    EDLS 650Designing a Literacy Program3.0
    Total Credits31.0

    View Course Descriptions

    Admissions Criteria

    • A bachelor's degree from a regionally accredited institution with a GPA of 3.0 or higher (graduate degree GPA will be considered along with the undergraduate GPA)
    • Current Teacher Certification

    Required Documents

    With multiple ways to submit documents, Drexel makes it easy to complete your application. Learn more by visiting our supporting document submission guide.

    • A completed application
    • Official transcripts from all universities or colleges and other post-secondary educational institutions (including trade schools) attended
    • Two letters of recommendation (professional or academic)
    • Personal statement (800 - 1600 words) that will give the admissions committee a better understanding of:
      • Why you are choosing this particular program of study
      • Your plans upon completion of the degree
      • How your current work experience will enhance your experience in this program
    • Resume
    • Proof of Teacher Certification
    • Additional requirements for International Students


    The tuition rate for the academic year 2016-2017 is $894 per credit. (A 25% discount off Drexel's regular tuition rate of $1192 per credit)

    • This rate applies only to new online students.
      • Students being readmitted to Drexel University must contact within the first two weeks of the term to request tuition savings for which they qualify.
    • This program is eligible for Financial Aid.
    • Special tuition rates available for Drexel University Alumni, Military members, and members of our Partner Organizations.
    • Special rates cannot be combined. If you qualify for more than one special rate, you'll be given the one with the largest savings.
    • When receiving special tuition plans with Drexel University Online, you may not combine them with other tuition benefits that may be available from Drexel University.


    Academic Calendar

    2016-2017 Academic Year

    Classes Begin 
    Classes End 
    Exams Begin 
    Exams End 

    Fall 2016     

    September 19, 2016

    December 3, 2016

    December 5, 2016

    December 10, 2016

    Winter 2017 

    January 9, 2017

    March 18, 2017

    March 20, 2017

    March 25, 2017

    Spring 2017 

    April 3, 2017

    June 10, 2017

    June 12, 2017

    June 16, 2017

    Summer 2017 

    June 26, 2017

    September 2, 2017

    September 5, 2017

    September 9, 2017

    2017-2018 Academic Year

    Classes Begin 
    Classes End 
    Exams Begin 
    Exams End 

    Fall 2017     

    September 25, 2017

    December 9, 2017

    December 11, 2017

    December 16, 2017

    Winter 2018 

    January 8, 2018

    March 17, 2018

    March 19, 2018

    March 24, 2018

    Spring 2018 

    April 2, 2018

    June 9, 2018

    June 11, 2018

    June 15, 2018

    Summer 2018 

    June 25, 2018

    September 1, 2018

    September 4, 2018

    September 8, 2018

    Apply today for the Reading Specialist Certification

    Apply now to begin your application for obtaining a Drexel degree online!


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