Early Literacy

Graduate Certificate Program Summary


Early literacy instruction in the school and community is an area of national emphasis. Many universities or Pre-Kindergarten-12th grade school districts are developing programs to enhance Early Literacy instruction. This certificate will provide a pathway for gaining expertise for new educators, those who wish to change their focus, and those who want to gain greater expertise in this area.

The graduate certificate in Early Literacy will offer a route for graduate students who are practicing teachers to organize their coursework in an area of need in their schools. Effective early literacy instruction has been a focus of educational reform since the first reports about Head Start programs in the early 1970s. This certificate will help graduate students to structure a master's degree in a purposeful manner. The certificate program will offer professional recognition of expertise for teachers who are or want to be engaged in Early Literacy instruction in schools and community settings. Additionally, students who complete the Early Literacy Certificate Program will be well on their way to completing a Nebraska Pre-Kindergarten-12th grade Reading Specialist Endorsement, should they wish to also pursue that designation.

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This graduate certificate is offered by the Department of Teaching, Learning and Teacher Education.

On the Web

Early Literacy

Graduate Chair

Dr. Kathy Wilson kwilson3@unl.edu

Certificate Advisor

Associate Professor Guy Trainin gtrainin2@unl.edu

Graduate Secretary

Ms. Shari Daehling sdaehling1@unl.edu

Application checklist and deadlines

Required by the Office of Graduate Studies

See also: steps to admission.

Required by the department for this certificate

  • Must be enrolled in the Teaching, Learning, and Teacher Education program
  • GPA of 3.0 on a 4.0 scale
  • Fit between applicant's goals/interests and the goals of the certificate

Application deadline
Rolling admission, contact department for more information.


Successful completion of the sequenced course work will be required, with an overall minimum GPA of 3.0 required. The graduate certificate program is 15 credit hours.


TEAC 802: Children's Literature(3 credits)
TEAC 854: Multicultural Literature(3 credits)
TEAC 817: Emerging and Early Reading
TEAC 813A: ESL: Acquisition OR
TEAC 811: Reading Processes and Practices (3 credits)

Students choose two of the following (6 credits):

CYAF 874: Assessment in Early Childhood
PSYC 889: Child Behavior and Development
TEAC 811: Reading Practices and Processes
TEAC 836A: Professional Development in Education: Literacy Coaching
TEAC 890: Workshop in Education (specific section must be approved for inclusion by the advisory committee)
SLPA 887: Language and Learning Disorders
SPED 802: Assessment
SPED 805: Code Based Reading
SPED 815/815A: Reading and Writing Disabilities: Elementary Students
SPED 890: Language Development for Teachers

More course information

The Course Catalog in the Graduate Bulletin provides course descriptions and prerequisites, grouped by subject area.

The Schedule of Classes specifies dates, times, locations, and instructors for courses being offered in current and near-future terms.

Departments: Have an update for this page? Contact Maggie Jobes.

The University of Nebraska-Lincoln does not discriminate based on gender, age, disability, race, color, religion, marital status, veteran's status, national or ethnic origin, or sexual orientation.