Special Reading Teacher Certification

The Graduate Literacy Program at Missouri State University offers all courses necessary to meet the Missouri Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (DESE) requirements for Special Reading Teacher Certification, K-12.  Those pursuing this certification must already have teaching certification and a minimum of two years of classroom teaching experience in order to qualify for certification. The Missouri DESE Special Reading Teacher Certification, K-12, allows teachers to become Title I teachers, reading interventionists, literacy specialists, literacy coaches, and other literacy-related district-level positions. The certification coursework also helps students become more effective teachers in all aspects of literacy within the regular education classroom setting. The certification coursework focuses on children in grades K-12 who are struggling readers/writers and who need to learn strategies to become more independent.  Note: We cannot confirm whether our program meets requirements for reading certification outside of the state of Missouri. If you are not currently teaching in the state of Missouri, please contact your state's Department of Elementary and Secondary Education to determine whether our program meets certification requirements.

To meet the Missouri certification requirements for special reading (Grades K-12) you must have the following:

  • A valid Missouri teacher’s certificate and two years of classroom teaching experience.
  • Professional Requirements* (these shall be met by courses of at least two semester hours, unless otherwise specified, with no grade lower than a “C”).

The following coursework should also be completed:

  1. General requirements:
    1. A valid Missouri permanent or professional certificate of license to teach; and
    2. Two (2) years of classroom teaching experience;
  2. Professional requirements*
    The following coursework should also be completed. (These shall be met by courses of at least two (2) semester hours, unless otherwise specified.):
    1. Foundations of Teaching:
      1. Child Psychology **
      2. Adolescent Psychology**
        OR a combined course to meet the above two courses
      3. Psychology and/or Education of the Exceptional Child *
      4. Evaluation of Abilities and Achievement – RDG 780
    2. Teaching Methods:
      1. Reading (at least three (3) courses required, minimum total of twelve (12) semester hours, one (1) of these courses shall be in Analysis and Correction of Reading Disabilities) – RDG 640/574
        Additional reading methods * – RDG 318, 420/421, 474, or 710
      2. Language Acquisition and Development – RDG 700
      3. Behavior Management Techniques – RDG 685/585
      4. Counseling Techniques – RDG 680/580
    3. Clinical Experiences:
      1. Practicum in the Diagnosis and Remediation of Reading and Related Difficulties:
        A minimum of six (6) semester hours is required for the practicum – RDG 781 and RDG 782

*These may be met by courses taken as part of the baccalaureate degree.
**A combined course of at least three (3) semester hours in Child and Adolescent Psychology may meet these two (2) requirements.

For more information about the Special Reading Certification, contact Dr. Kayla Lewis at 417-836-4196.