Apr 20, 2024  
Mansfield University 2011-2012 Graduate Catalog 
Mansfield University 2011-2012 Graduate Catalog [Archived Catalog]

Education, Master of Science

Return to {$returnto_text} Return to: Programs

Offered by the Education and Special Education Department
Dr. Kathleen Carico, Chairperson
Retan Center 207D, (570) 662-4562, e-mail kcarico@mansfield.edu

The Education and Special Education Department offers a degree in Master of Science (M.S.), Education, with two concentrations, Reading Specialist Added Certification K-12 and Teaching Children’s Literature P-12. The M.S. is chosen by those graduate students pursuing a master’s degree with secondary emphasis or by those pursuing a master’s degree with a K-12 emphasis. The minimum number of credit hours required for this degree is 33 (or 30 if the thesis option is completed).

Teaching requires knowledgeable, creative, and committed professionals who make informed decisions on behalf of their students. Through advanced studies in education,  the M.S., Ed., graduate students become more knowledgeable, skilled and confident teacher leaders. They also learn to collaborate with colleagues, to be lifelong learners, and to lead by example. Courses and research experiences in the graduate program are designed to prepare reflective teacher leaders. These programs are also designed to develop advanced knowledge in research, curriculum, supervision, and adaptive strategies meeting the needs of all learners.

Selected MU programs that prepare teachers and other educational professionals at the initial or advanced levels are nationally recognized by specialized professional associations (SPAs), which are member organizations of NCATE.  For a current listing of specific Mansfield University nationally recognized SPAs, please consult the NCATE listing at http://www.ncate.org/tabid/178/Default.aspx?state=PA&CO_ID=10753.  The contact information for NCATE is:

National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education
2010 Massachusetts Ave NW, Suite 500
Washington, DC 20036
Telephone: (202) 466-7496
Fax: (202) 296-6620
General e-mail: ncate@ncate.org

Mission:  The mission of the M.S., Education Degree Program is to prepare teacher leaders who use their advanced scholarship related to knowledge of students, content, pedagogy, resources, and culture to design effective classroom instruction and to influence the culture and opportunities for children in their respective schools and districts.

Vision:  Graduates with a M.S., Education degree will be identified as leaders in their schools, districts, and professional organizations as a result of their lifelong dedication to improve education for children.

Graduate program faculty in the M.S., Education program are committed to the following:

  • Curricula of rigor and relevance through a model of continuous reflection, assessment, and collaboration.
  • Standards of professional growth and performance that challenge faculty to maintain the highest quality of teaching and that challenge students to a life of scholarship, leadership, and continuous professional growth.
  • Support of student learning through equitable, caring, and stimulating professional relationships.
  • The development of students’ leadership skills to ensure that their respective schools follow best practice in using evidence-based instruction.

Student Learning Outcomes for M.S., Education Degree Program

After completion of the M.S., Education, students will be able to:

  • Use their advanced knowledge to enhance instruction, design effective assessment, and improve student learning for children in a variety of settings.
  • Develop and nurture collaborations with professional communities and participate in professional organizations to continue growth and enhance professional effectiveness in ever-broadening educational and community settings.
  • Draw on advanced knowledge of and collaborations with local communities to ensure an equitable, safe, effective learning environment for children and to interact with students and families in culturally responsive ways.
  • Communicate professional and curricular decisions confidently and effectively, both orally and in writing, to students, parents, administrators, school board officials, and other important stakeholders.

The following two concentrations are available in the M.S., Education Degree Program:  


Reading Specialist Added Certification K-12 Concentration

Coordinators, Dr. Craig Cleland and Dr. Nanci Werner-Burke
Retan Center, (570) 662-4563; (570) 662-4577

Mansfield University offers a 33 credit hour sequence of courses leading to a master’s degree with recommendation to the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania for K-12 added certification as a reading specialist. To be admitted to the concentration, applicants must hold some other current Pennsylvania teaching certificate (e.g., elementary, secondary, special education, etc.) and have completed an initial preparation program that included at least 12 weeks of full-time student teaching. Successful completion of the concentration requires candidates to complete all required courses in the graduate concentration and pass the state-mandated Praxis reading specialist test. It may be possible to transfer a maximum of six credit hours of approved course work into the concentration. At the completion of this concentration, students will be eligible for recommendation for certification in Reading Specialists.

Reading specialists perform a wide variety of roles encompassing assessment, instruction, and leadership. Reading specialists work as diagnostic-prescriptive teachers, offer in-classroom assistance for readers experiencing difficulties, and serve as reading/literacy coaches for members of school faculties.

The Mansfield University Reading Specialist concentration is nationally recognized by the International Reading Association (IRA) as an advanced preparation program and is designed around the IRA Standards for Reading Professionals. http://www.reading.org/General/Default.aspx.

International Reading Association
800 Barksdale Road
P O Box 8139
Newark, DE  19714-8139
Phone: (800) 336-7323 (U.S. and Canada) (302) 731-1600 (elsewhere)
Fax: (302) 731-1057
E-mail: customer service@reading.org


The mission of the Reading Specialist graduate concentration at Mansfield University is to prepare reading specialists/literacy coaches who are able to effectively and responsibly:

  • Select, provide, implement, and interpret literacy assessments and use this data to design fair, engaging, and appropriate instruction and instructional experiences for students, K-12, in a variety of contexts and formats.
  • Provide literacy leadership beyond the level of the classroom by working with teachers, support personnel, administrators, and the community to further develop and evaluate the school or district K-12 literacy and professional development programs.

 Student Learning Outcomes, Reading Specialist Concentration

  1. Foundational Knowledge
    • Candidates will demonstrate knowledge and understanding of the theoretical and evidence-based foundations of reading and writing processes and instruction, as well as the dispositions and skills needed to apply them to effective teaching and learning.
  2. Curriculum and Instruction
    • Candidates will use research and knowledge of best practices to critically select instructional approaches and materials. They will demonstrate the ability to lead collaborative school efforts to evaluate, select and use a variety of instructional materials to meet the specific needs, and abilities of all learners.
  3. Assessment and Evaluation
    • Candidates will be knowledgeable about all aspects of assessment as related to the different facets of development and literacy. They will demonstrate the ability to critically evaluate, select, create, implement, score, and interpret the results from a variety of assessment tools and practices to plan and evaluate effective literacy-based instruction for individuals and in school systems.
  4. Diversity
    • Candidates will increasingly recognize, understand, and value the forms of diversity that exist in society and their importance in learning to read and write, and use this awareness and disposition as a guiding force in their curricular and instructional decisions. They will work within the school system and reach out to parents and the community to develop and implement strategies to advocate for equity.
  5. Literate Environment
    • Candidates will create a literate environment that fosters reading and writing by integrating foundational knowledge, instruction practices, approaches and methods, curriculum materials, and the appropriate use of assessments. They will purposefully structure the physical and social environment for optimal learning and will be able to articulate the reasoning behind the routines and differentiation strategies they choose.
  6. Professional Learning and Leadership
    • Candidates will recognize the importance of professional learning and leadership as a career-long effort and responsibility and demonstrate positive behaviors toward their own literacy growth. They will apply foundational knowledge of adult learning theories and related research about organizational change, professional development, and school culture, to progressively influence local, state, or national policy decisions.

* These outcomes are based on the “Standards for Reading Professionals” (2010) issued by the International Reading Association. http://www.reading.org/General/Default.aspx

International Reading Association
800 Barksdale Road
P O Box 8139
Newark, DE  19714-8139
Phone: (800) 336-7323 (U.S. and Canada) (302) 731-1600 (elsewhere)
Fax: (302) 731-1057
E-mail: customer service@reading.org

Reading Specialist Concentration Required Courses  

Total Credit Hours: 33

Teaching Children’s Literature P-12 Concentration

Coordinators: Dr. Craig Cleland and Dr. Kathleen M. Carico
Retan Center, (570) 662-4563; (570) 662-4562

To be admitted to the concentration in Teaching Children’s Literature P-12, the applicants must  hold a current Pennsylvania teaching certificate (e.g., elementary, secondary, special education) and have completed an initial preparation program that included at least 12 weeks of full-time student teaching. This concentration leads to a Master of Science degree in Education; it does not lead to advanced certification. The concentration will provide graduate students the opportunity for in-depth study of literature including extensive genre study; research in the field of children’s literature; and strategies for effective teaching of children’s literature to children from birth to young adulthood.  Emphasis is placed on selection, evaluation, and integration of quality children’s literature of all genres into the curriculum from preschool through senior high school. Students may choose to focus on literature for young children, children in the intermediate grades, or adolescents by selecting courses relevant to their interests. As part of the literature emphasis, students will also consider the learner and the environment, exploring ways to use their advanced knowledge to make literature accessible and meaningful for students of all ages, thereby improving student learning.


The mission of the concentration is to prepare teachers whose advanced knowledge of literature, enhanced pedagogical strategies, awareness of issues relevant to the teaching of literature, and honed professional skills will make them instructional leaders in their schools and districts in the area of teaching children’s and young adult literature, promoting a lifelong love of reading and literature for all students.

Student Learning Outcomes, Teaching Children’s Literature P-12 Concentration

  1. Content Knowledge
    • Candidates will be able to demonstrate advanced knowledge of content: children’s and young adult literature genre, theories of literary criticism, and strategies for integrating literature into other content areas and will apply this knowledge in designing effective instruction.
  2. Critical Issues
    • Candidates will be able to identify critical issues in teaching with children’s and young adult literature and be able to develop effective action plans for addressing those issues as they arise in teaching. Candidates will be able to articulate sound, informed rationales for curricular decisions and will be able to do so clearly and with confidence, both orally and in written communication. 
  3. Research
    • Candidates will be able to use research skills and theoretical knowledge to design a project that addresses critical questions in teaching literature. Candidates will be able to evaluate and use research findings to improve student learning.
  4. Reflection
    • Candidates will be able to demonstrate their abilities to reflect upon the effectiveness of instructional practices in order to enhance classroom teaching.
  5. Technology
    • Candidates will be able to use advanced technology resources to promote student learning of literature.
  6. Learning Environment
    • Candidates will be able to demonstrate their advanced understanding of the importance of a learner’s individual characteristics as well as the impact of the total classroom environment on the learning process.
  7. Professional Responsibilities
    • Candidates will be able to demonstrate knowledge of community and professional resources and the impact of student communities on learning and demonstrate skills in collaborating with those communities to improve individual student learning and enhance the instructional environment of the classroom and/or school.

* These outcomes are based on the following National Board for Professional Teacher Standards: Early and Middle Childhood/Literacy: Reading-Language Arts; Early adolescence: Language Arts; and Adolescence and Young Adulthood: English Language Arts (http://www.nbpts.org/).

Teaching Children’s Literature P-12 Courses 

Total Credit Hours: 33

Return to {$returnto_text} Return to: Programs