Why UM-Flint

What sets apart our Masters in Literacy Education (MA) Program?


This Master of Arts in Literacy Education program is designed to accommodate the busy schedules of working educators and professionals. The program offers two tracks. The certification track supports certified educators who wish to become endorsed literacy specialists or literacy coaches.  The non-certification track supports both community professionals and educators who wish to gain literacy expertise and become leaders in a variety of settings. Courses will be delivered fully online during the fall, winter, spring, and summer semesters. There will be a two-week, summer clinical experience working with children in the Flint community. For out-of-area students, we offer a residency option. The program is designed to be completed part-time over two years.


While earning your Master of Arts in Literacy Education, you will gain practical experience completing clinical work with children in the UM-Flint School of Education and Human Services Reading Center. This real-world experience allows you to put coursework into practice and emerge better prepared to make a meaningful difference in children’s literacy development.

Discover the Summer Clinical Experience in Literacy Education

Our Summer Clinical experience is a two-week seminar offering our Literacy Education graduate students an opportunity to work directly with children in the Flint community. For out-of-area graduate students, we offer a residency option on campus, allowing you to experience the popular restaurants and places of downtown Flint. This unique experience will welcome you to the culturally rich community and campus of the University of Michigan-Flint. Learn more here

SMALL CLASSES with passion

You’ll complete the MA in Literacy Education program with small groups of fellow educators who share your passion for student success. This structure enables you to develop a strong support network for personal and professional development.


Learn from doctoral-level faculty with extensive working experience as educators and literacy experts. Your faculty mentors will guide you in the real-world application of your classroom lessons, and are committed to supporting your success throughout the program and beyond.

Become a reading specialist

The certification track of the program prepares you to take the Michigan Test for Teacher Certification and add the Reading Specialist (BR) endorsement to your teaching certificate. As a Reading Specialist, you’ll be qualified to teach reading as a special subject and serve as a building resource professional, such as a reading specialist or literacy coach.


As part of the world-renowned University of Michigan system, UM-Flint students have access to additional resources, expertise, and contacts at our sister campuses in Dearborn and Ann Arbor.


Requirements (30-36 credits)

A cumulative GPA of at least 3.0 (B) and passing grades in all courses are required.

Prerequisite Courses (9 credits)

  • EDR 543 - Foundations of Literacy (3)
  • EDR 645 - Literacy Instruction for Students Identified with Special Needs (3) 
  • LIN 520 - Linguistics for Teachers (3)  

Additional Literacy Courses (18 credits)

  • EDR 522 - Teaching English Language Learners in the K-12 Classroom (3)
  • EDR 544 - Integrated Language Arts throughout the Curriculum: Theory into Practice (3)
  • EDR 646 - Literacy Assessment in Elementary/Middle School (3)
  • EDR 670 - Reading and Writing Development/Research and the Construction of Meaning (3)
  • EDR 672 - The Literacy Specialist (3)
  • EDT 641 - Technology: Focus on Literacy Learning and Instruction (3)

Track of Choice

Certification Track (9 credits)
One from:

  • EDR 530 - Children's Literature (3)
  • EDR 532 - Multicultural Children's Literature (3)
  • EDR 537 - Adolescent Literature (3)

Two from:

  • EDE 500 - Contemporary Issues in Learning and Teaching (3)
  • EDR 520 - Reading and Writing Development of Young Children (3)
  • LIN 521 - First Language Acquisition (3)
  • EDR 530 - Children's Literature (3)
  • EDR 532 - Multicultural Children's Literature (3)
  • EDR 535 - Folklore and Storytelling (3)
  • EDR 537 - Adolescent Literature (3)
  • EDR 546 - Writing for Middle and Secondary School Teachers (3)


  • ENG 512 - Writing for Middle and Secondary School Teachers (3)
  • EDE 670 - Research Seminar (3)
  • EDR 699 - Seminar in Literacy (3)

Non-Certification Track (3 credits)
One from:

  • EDR 530 - Children's Literature (3)
  • EDR 537 - Adolescent Literature (3)

When a candidate has undergraduate coursework equivalent to core courses, additional electives will be selected in consultation with an Education advisor to complete a total of 30 credits for the non-certification track or 36 credits for the certification track.

Reading Specialist Certificate Endorsement

Upon successful completion of the Master of Arts in Literacy program (Certification Track) and the Reading Specialist (Test Code 92) Michigan Test for Teacher Certification, graduates with teaching certificates from the State of Michigan will be eligible for Reading Specialist certificate endorsement (coded BR in Michigan). This endorsement allows teachers to teach reading and language arts as a special subject in grades K-12.

Transfer of Credit

Up to six (6) hours of graduate credit (including coursework as a UM-Flint non-candidate for degree or “Lifelong Learning” student) may be accepted for transfer into the program.  All credit transfers must be approved by the Education Department faculty.  Students seeking to transfer credits not designated as program requirements or electives should contact the appropriate faculty advisor.

Additional information on the Master of Arts in Literacy Education (MA) including course descriptions can be found in the catalog.



  • Bachelor’s degree from a regionally accredited institution
  • Minimum overall undergraduate grade point average of 3.0 on a 4.0 scale
  • Teaching certificate, if applying for the certification track of the program

The federal government requires universities and colleges to be in compliance with the distance education laws of each individual state. If you are an out-of-state student intending to enroll in an online program, especially if it leads to professional licensure, please visit umflint.edu/oel/state-authorization-distance-education to verify the status of UM-Flint with your state.


To be considered for admission, submit an online application below. Other materials can be emailed to FlintGradOffice@umich.edu or delivered to the Office of Graduate Programs, 251 Thompson Library.

  • Application for Graduate Admission
  • $55 application fee (non-refundable)
  • Official transcripts from all colleges and universities attended
  • Submit a typewritten statement describing your goals for entering the graduate program and how these goals connect to your views on teaching and learning. Statements may be submitted online during the application process or emailed to FlintGradOffice@umich.edu
  • Résumé
  • Three letters of recommendation, preferably with at least one from an academic reference and one from an individual familiar with your teaching or professional work
  • Copy of teaching certificate (certification track only)
  • International Students: Submit additional documentation. Visit umflint.edu/international for details. This program is an online program with a mandatory summer clinical experience or residency. Students admitted to this program are not eligible to obtain a student visa (F visa). Students with all other visa types are eligible.

An interview with program faculty is required prior to admission. A criminal background check that includes fingerprinting at the candidate’s expense will also be required.

Application Deadlines

This program has rolling admissions and reviews completed applications each month. Application deadlines are as follows:     

  • Fall (early deadline*) – May 1
  • Fall (final deadline) – August 1 
  • Winter – November 15
  • Spring – March 15
  • Summer – May 15

*You must have a complete application by the early deadline to guarantee application eligibility for scholarships, grants, and research assistantships.