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Teaching Literacy, Birth to Grade 12 Overview

The M.S. in Teaching Literacy, Birth - Grade 12 prepares candidates to be dually certified as a Literacy teacher in both Birth - Grade 6 and Grades 5 - 12 (Dual certification). Our program prepares candidates to become reading teachers, literacy coaches, and remedial reading/writing specialists. Our graduates also remain Elementary and Secondary classroom teachers who have strong competence in classroom literacy instruction and assessment


Career Opportunities

Graduates of the Teaching Literacy program can pursue positions as:

  • Reading teacher
  • Literacy coach
  • Remedial reading and writing specialist
  • Classroom teacher with strong competence classroom literacy instruction and assessment

30 additional credits on top of your bachelor’s and master’s enables you to earn an extra *$39,068

*over a 20-year career

33 Credits 

Total Credits to Earn Your Degree

Classes in Language Development and Literacy Acquisition, Literacy Instruction to Students with Disabilities, Teaching Writing and the Writing Process, Child and Adolescent Literature

What We Offer
The Mercy Advantage

We have strong relationships with elementary and secondary schools across New York City and Westchester, ensuring that when students graduate they are prepared with experience and professional contacts.

Frequently Asked Questions

What careers does the M.S. in Teaching Literacy lead to?

Most schools have literacy positions at all levels including emergent literacy, early childhood, childhood education and literacy for adolescents. Also: reading teacher, literacy coach, and remedial reading/writing specialist. Our graduates also remain elementary or secondary classroom teachers who have strong competence in classroom literacy instruction and assessment

Is there demand for these positions?

Yes. Schools need teachers who are highly trained in literacy. The recent emphasis on literacy in national and state education agendas requires that our elementary, middle and high schools employ highly qualified literacy teachers and specialists.

Should I be certified prior to entering the Program?

Yes. An initial certification from New York State or an equivalent certification from another state is required.

What will I learn?

More than just how to teach students to read. You’ll learn about the background and foundations of literacy, practices for emergent literacy, English language learners, and teaching students with disabilities, as well as child and adolescent literature, content area reading and writing, literacy assessment, and research techniques.

Which state exams do I need to take to earn my initial or advanced certification as a teacher?

The following exams are required for initial candidates: EAS, CST(s) in your certification area(s), and the edTPA during student teaching, which is the last semester. Other state requirements include fingerprinting and workshops (DASA, Child Abuse, Violence Prevention, Health and Safety). The following exams are required for advanced candidates: CST(s) in your certification area(s).

Are there some frequently used links I might need during the application process?

Program Details & Curriculum

Program Details & Curriculum

Course Requirements for the Master of Science in Literacy, Birth–Grade 12

Total: 33 credits

For a full curriculum listing visit our catalog. 


Effective Educator Statement

Students must submit an Effective Educator Statement to complete their application. You can download requirements here. 

Please submit the completed statement to your application portal

Program Outcomes

By the end of this program, students should be able to: 

  • Demonstrate a solid content knowledge base that enables them to deliver effective educational and professional services based on current research, theory and practice
  • Employ multiple pedagogical and professional strategies and tools to enable them to be effective practitioners in educational settings and deliver services that promote students’ intellectual, social, and emotional development
  • Understand the diverse cultural, linguistic, learning, and social strengths and needs of all populations, and incorporate and demonstrate sensitivity to the richness of diverse cultures when providing educational and other school services
  • Employ technology to deliver information, instruction, and professional services to all members of the school community
  • Reflect on professional practice to make educational decisions and enhance student learning
  • Demonstrate positive dispositions that enable them to work as effective educators, citizens, and practitioners within the school and broader community