Online Master's Degree in Reading and Language, M.Ed.

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Learn More About UMass Lowell's Online Graduate Education Programs

Offered through the University of Massachusetts Lowell's Graduate School of Education, the Master of Education Degree in Reading and Language provides graduate students with a mix of online courses and field experiences. This 10-course program is designed for candidates who hold either an initial or professional teaching license in Elementary Education, English as a Second Language, Moderate Disabilities or Early Childhood Education.

First time students should register using the Non-Degree Course Registration Form for NEW Students. For academic advising on this degree program, please contact Dr. Vera Ossen at

Important Information Regarding Licensure:

The program below does NOT lead to licensure but does provide the professional knowledge required for the continuing education of experienced practitioners. Candidates from outside of Massachusetts who complete this program successfully are awarded a Master of Education Degree, but must contact their own state's department of education to determine their own state's licensing regulations, requirements and eligibility.

Candidates who teach in a Massachusetts school and hold a Massachusetts initial teacher license should refer to the licensure concentration for Massachusetts teachers.

Please note: All graduate students are assessed a "First Year Student Services Fee" upon matriculation into a graduate degree or certificate program. Please see the Accounts Receivable website for more information.

Program Outline

Total courses required: 10 courses (30 credits)

Foundations of Education - One course 3 credits

  1. 01.630 Educating Diverse Populations

Research and Evaluation - One course 3 credits*

  1. 07.541 Practitioner Action Research OR
  2. 07.642 Program Evaluation - Available Fall 2015!

Specialization - Six Courses: 18 credits

  1. 06.610 Teaching Reading in the Content Area
  2. 06.522 Young Adult Literature - Available Fall 2015!
  3. 06.527 Language Acquisition - Available Fall 2015!
  4. 06.528 Assessment of Reading and Language Disabilities** - Available Fall 2015!
  5. 06.529 Treatment of Reading and Language Disabilities
  6. 06.549 Theory and Research: Reading and Language - Available Fall 2015!

Elective - 3 credits

  1. One elective with permission of advisor

Capstone - 3 credits:

  1. 04.650 Action Research Capstone*** - Available Fall 2015!

* This course can be taken after 18 credits have been completed.

** 06.528 is a prerequisite for 06.529. These two courses are best taken in consecutive semesters and should not be taken as first courses in the program.

*** This course must be taken at the end of the program. It may be taken in conjunction with one other course.

ncatelogo UMass Lowell's Graduate School of Education is accredited by the National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education (NCATE), a national accrediting body for schools, colleges, and departments of education authorized by the U.S. Department of Education.

Course Descriptions

01.630 Educating Diverse Populations

Diversity Issues for School Leaders is designed to prepare experienced educators to provide effective leadership in a diverse community. Drawing from the Graduate School of Education's conceptual framework of Education for Transformation, students will be expected to: examine their own cultural heritage and experiences; gain increased understanding of equity issues concerning race, language, gender, sexual orientation, and special education needs; develop new insights for culturally responsive pedagogy; assess alternative strategies for facing illustrative conflicts in culturally diverse school settings; and consider how to ameliorate the pervasive impact of poverty on children in today's schools. 3 credits.

04.650 Action Research Capstone

Students will have the opportunity to develop a teacher work sample consisting of work in six major areas: (1) contextual factors, (2) learning goals, (3) assessment plan, (4) design for instruction, (5) analysis of student learning, and (6) reflection. 3 credits.

06.522 Young Adult Literature

The major emphasis of the course will be discussion and analysis of the goals of a literature curriculum and the exploration of various methods for achieving these goals. The characteristics of the different genres of literature will be discussed in detail 3 credits.

06.527 Language Acquisition

This course will focus on the study of the acquisition of language and the relationship of language learning to the development of literacy. Students will examine both first and second language acquisition. Students will be expected to apply their knowledge of language acquisition to best teaching practices for enhancing first and second language development in the classroom and to the development of literacy. 3 credits.

06.528 Assessment of Reading and Language Disabilities

This course examines the selection and use of procedures to make an adequate clinical and educational diagnosis. Includes the assessment of function and dysfunction in factors associated with language development; receptive, expressive, writing, reading; and the administration and interpretation of individual and group tests of perceptual, motor, and conceptual functioning in reading and language. 3 credits.

06.529 Treatment of Reading and Language Disabilities

This course will explore the specific practices in remedial teaching in grades K-12, using published materials, and developing new materials for small group, whole class, and tutoring settings. Students will develop and implement realistic corrective programs based on the interpretation of literacy assessments. These programs will include selecting strategies of instruction and materials, and establishing a framework of time and evaluation. 3 credits.

06.549 Theory and Research: Reading and Language

A final course on the national and international research in reading and language and the pertinence and proposed implementation of research findings to instruction and the various roles of the reading supervisor or director. 3 credits.

06.610 Teaching Reading in the Content Area

This course presents the theoretical foundation and current best practices for content area reading, writing, and study skills. The focus is on motivation, cognition, memory, and verbal processing theories as they apply to methodology. Students learn to develop lessons and units that integrate reading and writing while covering concepts in the content areas 3 credits.

07.541 Practitioner Action Research

This course examines how action research helps educators to learn to explore pressing classroom and school issues in systematic ways. Action research provide educators with opportunities to deepen their knowledge and skills as reflective practitioners, allowing them to contribute to the achievement of students and the improvement of schools. 3 credits.

07.642 Program Evaluation

Evaluation tasks will be identified and the policy issues attendant to evaluation will be examined. Students will identify and discuss several models of program evaluation,understand what needs to be considered and addressed in needs assessment, learn to identify an appropriate design for a new evaluation. Students will be expected to conduct program evaluation, present their ideas and illustrate how evaluation results can be useful for program decision making. 3 credits.

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Approximately 2 months prior to the start of each semester, Online and Continuing Education posts the new course schedule to the website. Once you've decided which course(s) you would like to take, returning students can register using SIS Self-Service, while new students must use the Non-Degree Registration Form.
Note: If you previously completed an academic program through UMass Lowell
but haven't already applied and been accepted into this program, please use the Non-Degree Registration Form to register.

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