Literacy M.Ed. Frequently Asked Questions


 What if I don’t want to be a reading specialist, can I still enroll in the program?

Yes! The program will help you develop a strong background in literacy instruction, which can support a variety of teachers in a variety of roles. Classroom teachers, ELA teachers, principals, instructional coaches, and central office administrators have all benefited from this program, and JMU graduates have moved into all of these roles.

 How do I add the endorsement after completing the program?

The Virginia Department of Education (VDOE) sets requirements for adding an endorsement and complete instructions can be found here.

 I have taken reading classes at another institution, do I still have to take those courses?

If it has been less than five years, and the courses did not count toward another degree, you may submit transcripts and a course syllabus for approval. This is done on a case-by-case basis.

 How long does it take to finish the degree?

Candidates can complete the program in two years as long as they follow the prescribed program.

 Can I do the program part-time?

The program is a part-time program. Candidates usually take two courses per semester—fall, spring, and summer. The program is designed the courses run consecutively so candidates do not usually have to take more than one course at a time (summer semesters sometimes run simultaneous courses). For example, in the fall and spring semesters, each course runs for seven weeks across the 14-week semester.

 Can I do the program while teaching full time?

The program is designed to be done while teaching full-time, and instructors understand that candidates are working full-time and plan coursework accordingly.

 Is the program online or face-to-face?

The current cohort is fully online. However, we have offered face-to-face cohorts in the past and will most likely offer cohorts using both platforms in the future.

 Do I have to take the GRE?

You do not have to take the GRE, but you can submit scores as part of your application.

 Do I have to take the RVE?

Yes, you are required to take the Praxis Series Reading for Virginia Educators (RVE) Reading Specialist Exam (5304) in order to eligible for graduation. To add a reading specialist endorsement on your Virginia teaching license, you must pass the RVE.

 What’s the time commitment each week?

Each course should take you approximately 8-10 hours per week outside of class time, however, because the program is designed for full-time teachers, some of your coursework may include aspects that you do during your job, such as teaching a literacy lesson.

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