Develop expertise and prepare for leadership roles in reading, literacy, and curriculum design and instruction.

Ed.S. in Language and Literacy

The EdS degree program in Language and Literacy prepares educators to contribute meaningfully in schools and communities as teachers, leaders, advocates, and practitioner-researchers. Students in this program develop expertise in effective, evidence-based strategies, programs, and policies that support literacy learning and reading achievement at PreK-12, college, or adult levels. The program curriculum emphasizes collaborative inquiry and innovation, equity, advocacy, and professional leadership and learning.

Child reading computer screen

Flexible and Personalized Program Structure

  • Flexible program delivery meets the needs of busy teachers and professionals: All courses are available online, and no campus visits are required.
  • Program is 30-36 graduate credit hours beyond the master’s degree, and includes an option to obtain Missouri K-12 Special Reading Certification.
  • You can choose to take classes on a full or part time basis. Most students take two classes per semester and earn their degree in under two years.

Who benefits from this degree?

The EdS degree is geared towards teachers, administrators, and others who already hold a master’s degree and have a special interest in language, literacy, and reading education. This program prepares candidates to advance in careers as:

  • English Language Arts teachers
  • Reading Specialists
  • Literacy coaches
  • Title I reading teachers
  • Curriculum specialists
  • Instructional coaches and team leaders
  • Reading/literacy lab teachers
  • Response to Intervention (RTI) leaders
  • Content area literacy experts
  • Special education teachers
  • Community college Instructors
  • Adjunct college/university instructors
  • Corrective and remedial reading experts
  • Developmental reading and writing instructors
  • Adult literacy teachers
  • District reading leaders
  • Non-profit professionals
  • Professional development leaders
  • Program evaluators and consultants
  • Reading clinicians and diagnosticians
  • Community educators

Certification Options

EdS program coursework satisfies the requirements for Missouri K-12 Special Reading Certification. Candidates must currently hold a valid Missouri professional teaching certificate in order to be eligible for this certification.

Application Deadline

  • Applications are accepted on a rolling basis. You can begin the program in any semester.
  • Completed applications must be received at least 10 days prior to the start of classes for the following semester to ensure a timely admissions decision.

Admissions Requirements

  • Grade point average (GPA) of 3.0 or above on a 4-point scale
  • Bachelor’s degree from an accredited institution (a master’s degree is strongly recommended)
  • Teaching certification OR Minimum of 2 years experience working in an educational setting
  • Completed application, including transcripts, a one-page Statement of Purpose and two letters of recommendation

Application Procedures

  • Complete the online UMKC Graduate Application and pay application fee.
  • Submit your official transcripts to the UMKC Admissions Office. Transcripts are considered official if received in a sealed envelope from the institution or sent electronically to the Admissions Office, either through transfer from your academic institution or through secured email (
  • Submit your Statement of Purpose and two letters of recommendation directly to: Division of Teacher Education and Curriculum Studies

Connie Fischer
615 E. 52nd Street, room 310
Kansas City, MO 64110

Questions about the application process can be directed to the Teacher Education & Curriculum Studies Division Office: 816-235-2245, or