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Reading Specialization, M.S.

This program meets International Reading Association standards and also fulfills the standards set forth by the Maryland State Department of Education for licensure as a reading specialist.

Graduates earning a master's degree in reading specialization from Hood College:

  1. Understand the theoretical and evidence-based foundations of reading and writing processes and instruction through:
    • Conducting empirical research that describe the cognitive, linguistic, motivational and sociocultural foundations of reading and writing development, processes and components, including word recognition, language comprehension, strategic knowledge and reading-writing connections;
    • Understanding the historically shared knowledge of the profession and changes over time in the perceptions of reading and writing development, processes and components; and
    • Understanding the role of professional judgment and practical knowledge for improving all students’ reading development and achievement.
  2. Use instructional approaches, materials, and an integrated, comprehensive, balanced curriculum to support student learning in reading and writing through:
    • Designing or implementing an integrated, comprehensive, and balanced curriculum;
    • Applying appropriate and varied instructional approaches, including those that develop word recognition, language comprehension, strategic knowledge, and reading–writing connections; and
    • Using a wide range of texts (e.g., narrative, expository, and poetry) from traditional print, digital, and online resources.
  3. Use a variety of assessment tools and practices to plan and evaluate effective reading and writing instruction through:
    • Understanding the types of assessments and their purposes, strengths, and limitations;
    • Selecting, developing, administering and interpreting assessments, both traditional print and electronic, for specific purposes;
    • Incorporating assessment information to plan and evaluate instruction; and
    • Communicating assessment results and implications to a variety of audiences.
  4. Create and engage students in literacy practices that develop awareness, understanding, respect, and a valuing of differences in our society through:
    • Recognizing, understanding, and valuing the forms of diversity that exist in society and their importance in learning to read and write;
    • Using a literacy curriculum and engaging in instructional practices that positively impact students’ knowledge, beliefs, and engagement with the features of diversity; and
    • Developing and implementing strategies to advocate for equity.
  5. Create a literate environment that fosters reading and writing by integrating foundational knowledge, instructional practices, approaches and methods, curriculum materials, and the appropriate use of assessment through:
    • Designing the physical environment to optimize students’ use of traditional print, digital and online resources in reading and writing instruction;
    • Designing a social environment that is low risk and includes choice, motivation and scaffolded support to optimize students’ opportunities for learning to read and write;
    • Using routines to support reading and writing instruction (e.g., time allocation, transitions from one activity to another, discussions and peer feedback); and
    • Using a variety of classroom configurations (i.e., whole class, small group, and individual) to differentiate instruction.
  6. Recognize the importance of, demonstrate, and facilitate professional learning and leadership as a career-long effort and responsibility through:
    • Demonstrating foundational knowledge of adult learning theories and related research about organizational change, professional development and school culture;
    • Displaying positive dispositions related to their own reading and writing and the teaching of reading and writing, and pursue the development of individual professional knowledge and behaviors;
    • Participating in, designing, facilitating, leading and evaluating effective and differentiated professional development programs; and
    • Understanding and influencing local, state or national policy decisions.