Literacy Endorsement

Reading Specialist K-12 Endorsement

“Literacy unlocks the door to learning throughout life, is essential to development and health, and opens the way for democratic participation and active citizenship.”
–Kofi Annan
Knowing how to communicate well via reading, writing, listening, and speaking makes a dramatic difference in individuals’ lives and opportunities. Literacy skills give us access to a wide range of literary text, which can contribute to our intellectual, emotional, cultural, and moral development. These skills are also instrumental for developing specialized knowledge in unlimited areas, including the sciences, social sciences, humanities, and trades. Strong verbal and written communication skills are increasingly essential for attaining economic independence and engaging in a democratic society. This endorsement aims to prepare candidates to take on the important and rewarding responsibility of teaching literacy and language arts to K-12 students with a range of learning needs, and to become literacy education leaders within schools and districts.

The literacy team at the University of Montana offers the State of Montana Reading Specialist K-12 Endorsement for undergraduate, post-baccalaureate, and graduate students.

Courses are designed to address national and state standards and to promote professional competencies, which have been endorsed by the International Literacy Association (ILA) as key skills for literacy teachers who may serve in a variety of roles, including reading teachers, reading specialists, and literacy coaches.


Students seeking initial teaching licensure in elementary, secondary, or K-12 content areas can simultaneously complete the Literacy Endorsement program.

To see the full list of required courses for the Literacy Endorsement program, please review the Literacy Endorsement Program of Study

Students not yet admitted to the Teacher Education Program will apply for the Literacy Endorsement program when applying for admission to the Teacher Education Program. Applicants complete either the secondary/K-12 or elementary application and the Literacy Endorsement application. Teacher Education Program applications can be found on the Department of Teaching & Learning page

Students who have already been accepted to the Teacher Education Program and are now looking to add the Literacy Endorsement must complete the Literacy Endorsement application.


Undergraduate students will:

  1. Demonstrate knowledge of the foundations of reading and writing processes and instruction
  2. Demonstrate knowledge and understanding of individual, cultural, linguistic, and ethnic diversity in the teaching process
  3. Demonstrate instructional practices, approaches, methods, and curriculum materials to support reading and writing instruction
  4. Demonstrate assessment tools and practices to plan and evaluate effective reading instruction
  5. Integrate knowledge and practices to monitor and evaluate the reading program and student learning.

All candidates must take and pass the Praxis II Content Knowledge Test: Reading (test number 5204, minimum passing score 159). Please visit the Licensure Specialist for details.

Contact Us


Dr. Kate Brayko
Associate Professor
Department of Teaching & Learning


Kristi Steinberg
Licensure & Assessment Manager
Teacher Education Services