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Master of Education in Literacy and Language

Program Overview

This degree enables you to work as a reading specialist in K-12 schools. Miami University courses in this program provide the very latest in best practices for working with struggling readers, including a supervised practicum. Curricular concepts allow students to explore cultural and linguistic factors that affect literacy development, and research practices that inform assessment and instructional design.

Course Requirements

A Message from the Literacy and Language Master's Program Coordinator

Racheal RothrockAre you interested in the latest literacy research?

Do you want to improve your practices to better support your culturally and linguistically diverse students?

Are you ready to become a literacy advocate and leader?

Join us in an exploration of critical theoretical foundations of literacy, while simultaneously engaging culturally relevant curriculum in your educational practices. Our program is designed for current educators. Our faculty value Time, Commitment, and Expertise. Our classes are designed to engage you with current research that centers you and your students' needs and allows you to interact with and learn from other educators. via a hybrid model that meets online, as well as in a physical space at the Voice of America Learning Center (VOALC) in West Chester.

Time: Your time is valuable! All of the courses in our program use a hybrid format, meeting online and at a physical space, such as at the Voice of America Learning Center (VOALC) in West Chester. No more than 50% of classes will be in person at the VOALC.

Commitment: Beginning a graduate program is a huge commitment! We are here to support you. All students will be assigned an academic advisor, who is part of our literacy faculty. Our professors are committed to you and your success. We will meet with you, provide needed support, and celebrate your success at graduation.

Expertise: All of our program courses are taught by faculty who are experts in the field of literacy. Our faculty collectively have decades of classroom teaching experience, contribute to current scholarly conversations, and live and work in the Oxford and Cincinnati areas. We also recognize that you, as teachers, bring a lot of expertise to our class conversations. Our courses employ a collaborative learning environment where everyone shares and grows in their knowledge and professional practice.

Come join a thriving program that seeks to empower teachers as professionals and center the sociocultural realities of all students. For questions or more information, reach out to us at

I look forward to meeting you soon!

Racheal M. (Banda) Rothrock, Ph.D.
Literacy and Language Masters Program Coordinator


  • Designed for working classroom teachers
  • Available to Miami undergraduates as a combined program
  • Options available for completing the M.Ed. in as little as 1 year
  • All classes are partially online and face-to-face classes are offered at Miami's Voice of America Learning Center in West Chester

Top 5 Reasons to Choose Miami

  1. Small class sizes, around 12 students
    Small classes allow professors and students to build a supportive community in which students feel comfortable sharing their views and exploring other perspectives.
  2. Experiential learning
    Educators will explore immediate and direct connections between theory and practice. Over 100 field hours are embedded into our program. Practicing teachers are able to take new knowledge and implement strategies in their classrooms the next day.
  3. High-quality teaching
    Our faculty strive to connect teaching and scholarship to create learning experiences that are not only supported by current research but also include a direct connection to best practices.
  4. Culturally relevant curriculum
    A main driving force of our program is to provide experiences in which educators can identify the importance of aligning curriculum with the needs of the school community. Our courses explore various cultures and how they play an integral role in language and literacy.
  5. Increase your network
    Not only will you build positive working relationships with our faculty, but also with other educators. Our graduates often stay connected with each other, increasing their network of professional educators.

Student Learning Outcomes

Our program is aligned with the International Literacy Association’s 2017 Revised Standards. The following provides alignment for the five major program outcomes that are used for the assessment of students’ mastery.

  • Students will identify and explain various literacy roles using personal experience and relevant research. (ILA Standards 1.4, 6.3, 6.4, 7.4)
  • Students will integrate theory and practice into high-quality literacy instruction by providing concrete examples that support practices. (ILA Standards 1.1, 1.2, 1.3, 2.1, 2.2, 2.3, 5.3, 6.2, 7.1)
  • Students will communicate with others using convincing reasoning, concrete examples, and connections to relevant research in order to participate and lead others to focus on culturally-relevant pedagogy. (ILA Standards 2.4, 3.3, 5.1, 5.2)
  • Students will use literacy assessments to support instructional decisions based on current literacy research. (ILA Standards 3.1, 3.2, 4.1)
  • Students will use a scholarly voice to communicate literacy practices in a professional and effective manner that advocates for the professional growth of self and others. (ILA Standards 3.4, 4.2, 4.3, 4.4, 5.4, 6.1, 7.2, 7.3)

Career Options

Our program graduates are highly sought-out for a variety of educational careers. A few examples include:

  • Literacy Specialists
  • Editor (Instructional Materials)
  • Educational Consultant
  • Educational Policy
  • Non-profit Literacy Coordinator

Admission Requirements

Apply for degree program admission online. You will submit:

  • College transcripts indicating an earned baccalaureate degree with a 2.75 grade point average or higher
  • Personal statement describing one's interest in the program
  • Resume/CV
  • Names, titles and email addresses of two references willing to submit letters on behalf of your candidacy

Additional Opportunities

TEAM Scholarship

The Teacher Education Access at Miami (TEAM) Scholarship provides a discount on graduate tuition and fees for Ohio PreK-12 Educators.

Graduate Assistantships

The Department of Teaching, Curriculum, and Educational Inquiry has been authorized to nominate a limited number of persons for graduate assistantships, subject to the approval of the Graduate School. These assistantships are awarded to students by the Graduate School upon the nomination of the Department.

Reading Endorsement

Did you know that our Master's degree program includes the courses needed for a Reading Endorsement? The reading endorsement provides the very latest in research and expertise for working with emergent and striving readers, including a supervised practicum. Endorsement certificate also provides insights into sociopolitical, cultural, and linguistic factors that affect literacy, and research practices that inform assessment and instructional design.

Meet Our Faculty

Robin Schell, Ph.D.

Robin Schell

Assistant Teaching Professor

Dr. Robin Schell is an assistant teaching professor in the Department of Teaching, Curriculum, and Educational Inquiry, where she supports both the Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL) and Literacy & Language programs. Dr. Schell’s research interests include literacy development through critical and culturally sustaining pedagogies, literacy development through content-based English as a Second Language (ESL) curriculum and instruction, and educational equity in content area classrooms for students with limited or interrupted formal education. She has recently published multiple peer-reviewed articles which focus on the powerful role critical literacy can play in helping ESL students to improve their language skills and become participants in our democracy, a topic she has presented at conferences across the country. Prior to joining the Department of Teaching, Curriculum, and Educational Inquiry, Dr. Schell taught courses at the University of Tennessee and was an ESL teacher at Vine Middle Magnet School in Knoxville, where she was the 2018 Teacher of the Year.

Racheal Rothrock, Ph.D.

Nathaniel Racheal Rothrock

Literacy Committee Chair

Dr. Rothrock's specialization in cultural studies within education, provides her with an interdisciplinary, critical perspective as scholar and teacher educator. Her research focuses on issues of equity and justice through a sociospatial consideration of how "community" has been significant within the K-12 classroom and educational experiences of historically marginalized students. Dr. Rothrock's experience as a secondary educator, teaching various subjects, and work with historically marginalized students supports her research and pedagogical practices. 

One of her recent publications highlighting this work includes:
Reyes, G., Banda (Rothrock), R. M., & Caldas, B. (2020). “We’re All in This Boat Together”: Latina/Chicana Embodied Pedagogies of Care. Journal of Latinos and Education, 1-16.

Ganiva Reyes, Ph.D.

Ganiva Reyes

Assistant Professor

Dr. Ganiva Reyes is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Teaching, Curriculum, and Educational Inquiry at Miami University, where she teaches classes in the Literacy and Language program, as well as courses around diversity and justice in education. Dr. Reyes currently leads the Social Justice Teaching Collaborative (SJTC) and was instrumental in reconceptualizing the Early Childhood Education curriculum towards a focus on social justice in the classroom. Her research revolves around intersectionality, Chicana feminist theory, and pedagogies of care to provide a nuanced approach to topics of diversity and inclusion in teacher education.

Her scholarship explores the intimate and interpersonal aspects of teaching, and how teachers need communal and institutional support to provide the same for their students. She integrates culturally relevant teaching, ethics of care, and feminist of color theorizing to show how teachers can re-envision their roles as teachers to be part of a support network for culturally and linguistically diverse students.

Dr. Reyes has presented on these topics in conferences and published several peer-reviewed articles in academic journals including International Journal of Qualitative Studies in Education; Critical Studies in Education; Journal of Latinos in Education, Review of Education, Pedagogy and Cultural Studies; Urban Review; and Curriculum Inquiry. She has also produced book chapters and encyclopedia pieces around curriculum, the Latinx diaspora, and feminist theories in education.

Eva E. Howard, Ph.D.

Eva Howard

Visiting Assistant Professor

Miami is in Howard’s blood. She grew up in Oxford, attended the McGuffey Lab School, (which is now The Campus Avenue Building) and even had home economics in room 218 of McGuffey Hall on the Oxford Campus.

After spending 22 years experience as a middle school teacher and 8 years as a middle school administrator she returned to Miami as a professor. She has both her Bachelors and Masters from Miami ('82 and '89) and is a National Board Certified Teacher in the area of Early Adolescence English Language Arts. She has a Ph.D. from the University of Dayton in Educational Leadership (2004).

Katherine E. Batchelor, Ph.D.

Katherine Batchelor

Associate Professor of Literacy

Katherine Batchelor is an Assistant Professor of Literacy at Miami University in Oxford, Ohio, USA. She is also a National Writing Project Teacher Consultant and Nationally Board Certified Teacher in Early Adolescence/English Language Arts. Prior to her Ph.D. in curriculum and instruction, Katherine taught reading and language arts for 10 years in Florida and California. Her research interests include adolescents' literacy practices (emphasis on writing), critical literacy and multiliteracies, and pre-service/in-service teachers' pedagogical decisions. She also has an affinity for young adult literature and picture books.

Paula Saine, Ph.D.

Paula Saine

John Heckert Professor of Literacy

Paula Saine is a Professor in the Department of Teaching, Curriculum, and Educational Inquiry and serves as John Heckert Professor of Literacy. Dr. Saine’s scholarly work fosters interactive literacy learning through innovative approaches that equip practicing and current teachers for an ever-changing society. In sum, her scholarly work emphasizes three distinct and interrelated principles that include: literacy, cultural competence, and the use of technology to enhance reading and writing of diverse learners in the K-12 classrooms. She has conducted more than 20 years of research and has written and presented extensively on her findings nationally and internationally in Cuba, Jamaica, Africa, England, Greece, and elsewhere.
Drawing on qualitative methodologies, her current research focuses on how virtual mentoring impacts the literacy development of children and youth. In addition to her many peer-reviewed journal articles, Dr. Saine has published two books: Common Core: Using Global Children’s Literature and Digital Technologies (2016, Rowman & Littlefield), is indeed, the culmination of her scholarly research, scholarly activity, and contribution to her field. It is an instructive book that enhances knowledge base of global literature and innovative technologies, which as a result, deepen teacher and student appreciation for cultures around the world.

Dr. Saine’s book, Virtual Mentoring for K-12 Literacy Instruction (2018, Rowman & Littlefield), provides best practices to virtually mentor K-12 students in a synchronous learning environment. This book is used by K-12 teachers and preservice teachers to promote literacy development and engagement. Dr. Saine currently has a book under contract with Rowman & Littlefield titled, Remote Learning: Engaging in K-12 Literacy Instruction (projected publication 2021). Dr. Saine’s professional roles have extended beyond the academy to positively impact professional organizations, specifically, she served as Vice-President, President-Elect and President of Ohio Council for the International Reading Association (OCIRA).

Michelle L. Cosmah, Ed.D.

Michelle Cosmah

Associate Clinical Professor

Dr. Cosmah has been a faculty member in the Department of Teaching, Curriculum, and Educational Inquiry at Miami University since 2013. Her previous professional experience includes over 10 years teaching with the Cincinnati Public School District in grades K-3. Her research interests include early childhood literacy, digital literacy, and school partnerships.

Catherine Haerr, Ph.D.

Assistant Clinical Professor

Catherine Haerr is an Assistant Clinical Professor within the Department of Teaching, Curriculum, and Educational Inquiry. Certified as a Middle Childhood Generalist by the National Board for Professional Teaching Standards, she currently serves as the coordinator of Middle Childhood Education and further supports the Literacy and Language program.

Haerr’s scholarship focuses on social justice within the classroom and she has written and presented extensively on the disparate impacts No Child Left Behind had on marginalized student populations. She provided instrumental support in redesigning the Early Childhood Education curriculum to center on social justice in the classroom and is currently working on a similar redesign of the Middle Childhood Education curriculum.

In addition to her Miami teaching experience, Dr. Haerr has taught teacher education courses at Ball State University and has extensive experience as both an elementary and middle school classroom teacher.

Contact Us

Department of Teaching, Curriculum, and Educational Inquiry
401 McGuffey Hall
Oxford, OH 45056