Reading Education Graduate Degrees

M.Ed. in Reading

National Louis University’s graduate program in Reading degree is designed for teachers already holding a Professional Educator's License (PEL) who are interested in further developing their teaching skills or meeting the eligibility requirements to earn a Reading Teacher Endorsement or a Reading Specialist Endorsement.

Consider getting your reading education graduate degree at NLU if you:

  • Are a teacher, supervisor, administrator or other professional who wants to enhance your skills within the areas of literacy, development and instruction
  • Want to achieve the state of Illinois Reading Teacher endorsement or Reading Specialist endorsement

Learn more about NLU's Reading and Language department >>

Through coursework, practicum experiences and study with peers and faculty, you’ll gain:

  • An in-depth understanding of the research, theory and practice related to the reading and writing processes and instruction
  • A better understanding of the nature and development of reading and writing
  • The ability to select appropriate literacy curriculum, including high quality literature, and to implement instructional approaches, assessment and instruction for divergent readers
  • The expertise to provide staff development in schools

This program is designed for licensed teachers (already holding a PEL) who are interested in deepening their understanding of teaching reading and/or in becoming a certified Reading Specialist. The reading sequence fulfills the state of Illinois guidelines for the preparation of Reading Specialists.

Requires passing of the Test of Academic Proficiency (TAP) or ISBE approved alternative.

This program is designed for licensed teachers (already holding a PEL) who are interested in developing their literacy teaching or in applying to be a Reading Teacher. The reading sequence fulfills the state of Illinois guidelines for the preparation of Reading Teachers.

Master of Education (M.Ed.): The M.Ed. degree is designed for licensed professional teachers seeking advanced preparation for higher levels of professional competence in the classroom.

Certificate of Advanced Study (C.A.S.): The C.A.S. in Reading is designed for those seeking to add a new career dimension to their current professional competencies. Applicants for the C.A.S. must have a master’s degree from a regionally accredited institution and, if required by the program, a valid teaching license. Click here to view program disclosure information.

Over the long term, the demand for educational leaders and specialists who have a deep knowledge base in literacy will increase as a result of a growing emphasis on improving education and making it available to not only more children and young adults and those individuals with special needs, but also to students for whom English is a second language.

NLU has a long-standing reputation for its education and administrator training programs, and is accredited by the National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education (NCATE). Since 1886, we’ve educated thousands of Chicago-area teachers, who go on to become experts and leaders at local and national levels. Our graduates have received more awards teaching and leadership from the prestigious Golden Apple Foundation than graduates at any other university in Illinois.

Our Reading program was designed by faculty with academic expertise and years of classroom experience, and our instructors help students build both theoretical and practical understanding of language and literacy education.

TAP test required for students interested in the Reading Specialist Endorsement

NLU offers various options to help you get ready for the ILTS Test of Academic Proficiency (TAP). This includes three-week courses that feature a personalized learning plan and are designed to develop competencies necessary to pass the TAP. Register today!

Learn more about NLU’s TAP preparation options

Candidates must complete an electronic portfolio reflecting IRA/NCATE/ISBE standards and must be an active member of a professional literacy organization. Students who receive more than one “C” grade in any courses may not continue in the program. Courses needed to meet State of Illinois general and professional education courses and other state prerequisite requirements are not included in this listing. Visit the Illinois State Board of Education for specific requirements, updates and amendments.

All applicants must meet NLU's general admission requirements as well as additional requirements specific to this program. Refer to the appropriate application checklist available online at

Get more information today about enrolling in in one of NLU's degree programs. Connect with an Enrollment Specialist or call 888.NLU.TODAY (888-658-8632).

For program disclosures, please visit NLU Program Disclosures.


    NLU’s Chicago campus on South Michigan Avenue occupies five floors of the historic Peoples Gas Building. This landmark building, across the street from the Art Institute of Chicago and Grant Park, is easily accessible by train, bus and car and is surrounded by restaurants, parking lots/garages and shops.

    122 S. Michigan Avenue
    Chicago, IL 60603
    (888) 658.8632
    Info » | Directions »

    Conveniently located in a fast-growing business district off I-90 and Route 31, NLU Elgin features 10 classrooms with high-tech media equipment; a computer lab with high-speed Internet access; two conference rooms; and comfortable student lounges. Parking is free at this recently remodeled and upgraded teaching site, which now includes wireless Internet access.

    620 Tollgate Road
    Elgin, IL 60123
    (888) 658.8632
    Info » | Directions »

    Opened in the summer of 2006, NLU North Shore at Skokie is a state-of-the-art modern campus located just off the Edens Expressway near the Old Orchard Shopping Center. The campus includes 44 wireless classrooms equipped with high-tech media equipment; four computer labs with high-speed Internet access, including a walk-in lab in the library; six conference rooms; a public café for beverages and snacks; a student welcome center; a library for research and study; and multiple, comfortable student lounge areas.

    5202 Old Orchard Road
    Skokie, IL 60077
    (888) 658.8632
    Info » | Directions »

    Located just minutes from the East-West Tollway (I-88), NLU Lisle features 42 wireless classrooms equipped with high-tech media equipment; four computer labs with high-speed Internet access, including a separate walk-in lab in the library; a café for beverages and snacks; a student welcome center; a library for research and study; conference rooms; and six comfortable student lounge areas with wireless access.

    850 Warrenville Road
    Lisle, IL 60532
    (888) 658.8632
    Info » | Directions »

    Located in one of Chicago's major northwest suburbs, the newly renovated NLU Wheeling includes 20 classrooms with high-tech media equipment, four conference rooms, four computer labs with high-speed Internet access, large student lounge areas with wireless capabilities and interactive video capabilities, and an extensive research library. The site also houses the university library research collection.

    1000 Capitol Drive
    Wheeling, IL 60090
    (888) 658.8632
    Info » | Directions »

    Established in 1988 and located in one of the city's major business districts, NLU's Florida Regional Center serves students in 13 counties in central Florida. In addition to six classrooms, this location features a conference room, a computer lab with high-speed Internet access, an extensive research library and comfortable student lounges.

    5110 Sunforest Drive, Suite 102
    Tampa, FL 33634
    (800) 366.6581
    Info » | Directions »

    NLU has a proud history of serving graduate students in southeastern Wisconsin. We currently offer all Wisconsin residents online programs in non-licensure education as well as a variety of business-related degrees.

    12000 West Park Place, Suite 100
    Milwaukee, WI 53224-3007
    (414) 577.2658
    Info » | Directions »