The University of Louisiana Monroe's online Master of Education in Curriculum and Instruction - Reading degree can lead to increased job opportunities for certified teachers looking to move beyond traditional classroom duties.
ULM's M.Ed., C&I - Reading online degree program provides a solid foundation in research methods, including in-depth studies on the collection and evaluation of data relating to student achievement, along with instruction in diagnostics and the measurement of student progress and outcomes. An integrated approach to learning is presented, and the coursework also reviews current research, methodologies, instructional strategies and technology use involved with increasing student reading ability.
The coursework includes the topics of exceptional students and students with special needs, ensuring graduates understand the differing populations they will work with. Clinical/laboratory experience and leadership development opportunities are also key components of the program.
Careers Beyond the Regular Classroom
Several career paths are available for certified teachers who have an M.Ed. in C&I - Reading. With the skill set they have acquired through their studies, degree holders have the capability to not only continue working directly with students but to also mentor their colleagues. Another way in which they are able to showcase their knowledge and expand their responsibilities is by serving as part of an administrative team in the implementation of strategic reading programs across a school district. Here are several positions for educators with an M.Ed. in C&I - Reading.
Reading Interventionist: Educators in this position work directly with students who have been identified as needing to improve their reading skills. Interventionists are able to assist these students by deploying strategies that serve to increase phonemic awareness, phonics, vocabulary development, reading fluency and reading comprehension.
Reading Coach: A reading coach supports classroom teachers through "informal activities -- such as conversing with colleagues -- to more formal ones such as holding team meetings, modeling lessons and visiting classrooms," according to an International Reading Association (IRA) report.
Reading Specialist: These teachers can serve in any number of roles. They may start in a role that builds individual student engagement and then progress to a position where they serve as a coach to other reading coaches, for example. The IRA notes that a reading specialist's three major methods in improving student learning consist of instruction, assessment and leadership.
These three methods also align with the desirable qualities noted by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics for curriculum developers and instructional coordinators. The primary qualities wanted by employers for these roles include analytical, communication, decision-making and leadership skills.
With the variety of duties in their job descriptions, curriculum developers and instructional coordinators may also find themselves involved in ordering books and materials, interpreting state and federal requirements, and aligning curricula between classrooms at the same level and from one grade level to the next.
Depending on location and years of experience, educators with an M.Ed., C&I - Reading can expect annual salaries ranging from $50,000 to $70,000 or more. Most positions also provide benefits. (Data based on BLS and PayScale.com.) Moving into district level roles can push the salary up into the $90,000 range.
Sources:U.S. Department of Education: Essential Components of Reading
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