Linking Science to Practice

Bay Path University’s MSEd/EdS in Reading & Literacy Instruction is uniquely designed to prepare graduates for leadership in the implementation of scientific research-based practices for teaching literacy in grades PreK-12. The program offers individuals the opportunity to develop an expertise in teaching reading and writing using current, effective, research-based strategies for use in general education and specialized settings. 

The Bay Path Advantage

The Reading & Literacy Instruction program links the science of reading with educational practice. Topics include assessment and instructional planning for students with specific learning disabilities including dyslexia, related disorders of reading and written language, and for second language learners.

Courses provide practical application of the theoretical underpinnings of reading and writing development reflecting findings from decades of cognitive neuroscientific and educational research. Teachers learn evidence-based instructional practices using explicit, sequential, structured language approaches with a multisensory methodology. 

 About the Degree

 Degree Options:
• MSEd: 44 credit Master of Science in Education inReading & Literacy Instruction
• EdS: 47 credit Education Specialist in Reading &Literacy Instruction (The EdS is an advanced degreethat provides teachers who currently hold a master’s degreewith an area of specialization)

Program Options:
• Initial licensure: for candidates who want to earn aMassachusetts initial license as a reading specialist(All Levels) *See reverse side for state requirements
• Non-licensure: for candidates that want to pursuea MSEd or EdS degree without the readingspecialist licensure
• Program is structured as a cohort model, studentsprogress through the coursework together, in asequential manner
• Convenient schedule is a combination of online and on campus courses (East Longmeadow, Mass.)
• Experienced, supportive faculty, and small class sizes
• Students have access to online and on-ground support and academic resources
• Financial Aid is available
• No GMAT or GRE required

Applying for Admission

For consideration, applicants must submit the following documents to the Office of Graduate Admissions:
A completed application
2. An original essay of at least 250 words on the topic “Why the MSEd/EdS in Reading & Literacy Instruction program is important to me, my career and professional goals, and my life?”
3. Undergraduate and graduate transcripts (a GPA of 3.0 is preferred)
4. A current resume
5. Two recommendations (form available online)
6. Sign and return the program requirement form (form available online)
7. Submit copy of MTEL results (Licensure applicants only)
8. Submit a copy of your current teaching license (Licensure applicants only)

Recommendation forms and official transcripts must be mailed directly to Bay Path University’s Office of Graduate Admissions: 

Degree Requirements

Prospective students may apply for admission to the MSEd/EdS in Reading & Literacy Instruction throughout the year. Each candidate will be reviewed by the Graduate Faculty Committee to determine the right course of study for each applicant.


Massachusetts Teachers:
Teachers who want to pursue a Massachusetts Reading Specialist License must successfully complete the Reading and Literacy Instruction degree courses, pass the Reading Specialist Licensure and Communication and Literacy Massachusetts Tests for Educator Licensure (MTELs), have at least an initial teaching license and have taught under that license for one year, and complete a practicum field experience in a Massachusetts public school setting.

VT, CT, NY, NH, RI Teachers:
Bay Path University offers a degree, but not endorsement or certification to out of state teachers. Out of state teachers enrolled in the Reading & Literacy Instruction degree program interested in their state’s reading specialist licensure/certification requirements must contract their state’s department of education directly to find their state requirements and see how our program coursework can be applied toward your state’s reading specialist licensure/certification.

Financial Aid

Receive up to $20,500 a year with a Stafford Loan!
For U.S. citizens and permanent residents, the options for financial assistance include federal and private loans. We encourage you to apply for financial aid at the same time you apply to graduate school.

Course Descriptions 

Multisensory Language and Literacy Strategies (3 credits)
Students explore content and teaching strategies used to develop competent readers and writers, based upon guidelines in the Massachusetts Curriculum Frameworks and techniques for developing skills to facilitate placement in the least restrictive environment. Topics include the teaching of reading; expanding literacy across the content areas, language arts instruction, diagnosis and assessment of reading skills using a variety of assessment techniques, educational terminology; theories of language development; design and modification of curriculum and intervention programs for success in reading for all levels.  Focus on identifying and developing appropriate multisensory structured language strategies including knowledge of theories, programs and practices, phonemic awareness, phonics, and vocabulary development, use of formal and informal assessments; and ways to prepare and maintain students in general education.  At least 10 hours of instruction covering the teaching of reading are delivered in this course.

Structure of Language Part l Phonology, Orthography, Morphology (3 credits)
This course is designed to give participants a working knowledge of phonetics, phonology, orthography, and morphology - the building blocks for effective teaching of word recognition, vocabulary, and spelling - and insight into the difficulties of children with decoding and encoding problems.  

Structure of Language Part ll – Meaning, Syntax and Semantics (3 credits)
This course will focus on reading comprehension instruction. Participants will study the factors that influence comprehension including fluency, word meaning (semantics), sentence structure (syntax), text organization, discourse structure and meta-cognitive processes. Throughout the course, students will construct knowledge in the development of reading comprehension in order to recognize and support students with reading difficulties. 

Teaching of Writing (3 credits)
Designed to provide educators with the information necessary to teach all students, this course focuses on the current research on evidence-based writing strategies and programs. Participants will identify and engage in instructional methods for supporting struggling writers. Exposure to assistive technology, assessment, and the arts will be explored as ways to increase and support writing outcomes for all students. 

RDG xxx Language Disorders and Literacy (3 credits)
This course explores the components of typical and atypical language development.  Instruction will focus on the different aspects of language, including, phonology, morphology, semantics, syntax, and pragmatics. In addition, time will be spent on exploring the behavioral manifestations associated with language disorders and the influence on academic performance, including written language skills and the relationship to reading/writing instruction will be carefully reviewed. 

Reading Research (3 credits)
This course will provide a definition of scientific research and a review of reading research. The focus will be on the importance of using research to guide evidence-based instructional practice in literacy, define scientific research, examine three types of research studies (longitudinal research, meta-analysis, and clinical trials),  present guidelines for evaluating the quality of particular research studies. 

Orton-Gillingham   (8 credits)
The Orton-Gillingham (O-G) approach is biologically and linguistically sound, diagnostic and prescriptive, structured, yet flexible. It is designed for the teacher who will work to individualize instruction to meet the intensive needs of struggling language learners. All aspects of the Academy of Orton-Gillingham Practitioners and Educators (AOGPE) Associate Level Curriculum will be covered. This course is designed to prepare and provide ongoing support to teachers completing their Associate Level Practicum over the course of a school year. The combination of coursework and practicum experience will prepare students to apply at the Associate Level to the AOGPE.

Informational and Narrative Text for Children and Adolescence (3 credits)
This course introduces the reading comprehension strand of the Project Read Program combined with exposure to the Madeline Hunter lesson plan guide and instruction techniques. Participants will become familiar with the Project Read Comprehension curriculums in order to successfully teach the concepts and skills required for student to become successful readers and become fluent in planning lessons using Hunter’s elements of effective instruction that elicit active participation, time on task, and learning and retention.

Reading and Writing Assessment (3 credits)
This course will provide experience in administering and interpreting data obtained from formal and informal reading, spelling and writing assessments, and  provide the ability to develop specific recommendations for appropriate reading, spelling, and written language curricula in order to enhance skills for all students, particularly those who have difficulty learning to read, write, or spell through traditional classroom methods. 

Literacy and the Change Process District/School Action Planning (3 credits)
This course focuses on conducting a needs assessment and developing a strategic literacy action plan for a district or school. A strategic literacy plan encompasses determining the current state of literacy, including gaps and redundancies in the literacy initiative, and identifying strategies for increasing student achievement in the area of literacy.  

Pre-practicum and Seminar (0 credits) Massachusetts Teachers Only id Enrolled in the Reading Specialist Licensure
Pre-practicum and seminar class meets four times during the fall semester and is designed to get the student ready for the practicum experience. PLEASE NOTE: A student needs to have enrolled and completed Pre-Practicum and Seminar in order to enroll in practicum. The course is for 0 credit and a grade is either pass or fail. A student needs a grade of pass in order to enroll in the practicum.

Reading Practicum with Practicum Seminar Sessions (9 credits) Massachusetts Teacher Only if Enrolled in the Reading Specialist Licensure
This practicum in reading is a required course for the Massachusetts reading specialist licensure and is carried out in a Massachusetts public school district. The reading licensure candidate works with students, faculty, and administrators to fulfill various roles of the reading specialist. The practicum seminars provide a forum for open discussion of goals and problem solving based on the practicum experience. The practicum is a total of a minimum 150 in-field hours and addresses the Professional Standards for Teachers required for this license. Pre-requisites include a 3.0 or higher in every course, a passing score on the MTEL for the reading specialist license, and approval of the Department. The practicum is completed in the final semester of the program.

Research in Education (3 credits) Only for Ed.S Degree Candidates
Applied research methodologies, including case analysis, action research, and survey research will be investigated to enable educators to become consumers of available research and to conduct appropriate research projects focusing on the application of programmatic coursework to improving school/community-based curriculum and instruction.

For more information call 413.565.1332 or email

Founded in 1897, Bay Path University focuses on preparing our students for a constantly changing world. Our main campus is located in Longmeadow, Massachusetts with additional sites across the state in Concord, East Longmeadow, Springfield, and Sturbridge. Our graduate and undergraduate student body consists of more than 3,100 women and men, representing over 33 states. Bay Path University is fully accredited by the New England Association of Schools and Colleges.