Reading Teacher and Reading Specialist Licenses

Reading Teacher License

Any person who has a specific assignment to teach reading must hold a reading teacher license. A regular K-12 reading teacher license can be issued to an applicant who has completed an approved program, who has received the institutional endorsement for the reading teacher license, and who has completed or possesses:

    • Eligibility to hold a Wisconsin License to teach or completion of an approved teacher education program
    • Two years of successful regular classroom teaching experience

Applicants also must have a minimum of 18 semester credits, with at least 12 of those credits taken beyond the bachelor’s degree. At least 16 of the 18 semester credits to include a practicum in teaching reading at the elementary level and at the secondary level, and to include course work in the following:

    • Developmental reading in the elementary school and in the secondary school
    • Assessment and instructional techniques for readers with special needs
    • Language development
    • Learning disabilities
    • Coursework in one of the following:
      • Gifted and talented education
      • Evaluation and measurement
      • Literature for children or adolescents

Reading Specialist License

Any person who directs K-12 reading programs, works with reading teachers, classroom teachers, administrators, and others as a resource teacher in reading must hold a reading specialist license.

A regular K-12 reading specialist license can be issued to an applicant who has completed an approved program, who has received the institutional endorsement for the reading specialist license, and who has completed or possesses:

    • Eligibility to hold a Wisconsin reading teacher license
    • A master’s degree with a major emphasis in reading, or at least a 30-graduate-semester-credit program equivalent to the master’s degree with a minimum of 15 graduate semester credits to include:
      • Guiding and directing the K-12 reading program
      • Field experience in K-12 reading programs
      • Research related to reading
      • Supervision of instruction
      • Content area reading for the specialist

Students may elect to meet the Wisconsin Certification requirement but not pursue an advanced degree or enroll in a special program. Those who choose this option should, nevertheless, consult with a faculty adviser because institutional endorsement is required for certification. In general, certain requirements of the Graduate School and of the department are waived for students who are not candidates for an advanced degree.