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Elements of Literacy Content and Curricular Knowledge




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Course level: EDU Graduate

This course focuses on the most current research, theory, methods, and state standards related to the science of reading and structured literacy. Teacher candidates will enhance content knowledge of phonics, phonemic awareness, fluency, comprehension, and vocabulary. This course provides teacher candidates with the background knowledge in the science of reading necessary to prepare comprehensive research-based and standards-based lesson plans. This course is not available for enrollment to residents of Arkansas, California, Connecticut, Iowa, Kentucky, Massachusetts, Minnesota, Missouri, New York, Ohio, Wisconsin, Wyoming and individuals who reside outside the United States.


This graduate level course requires proof of completion of a Bachelor's degree. Be prepared to provide documentation during the checkout process.

What you'll learn

Course skills and outcomes

Week 1

  • Describe the connections between listening, speaking, reading, writing, and thinking in literacy development.
  • Examine language functions and their role in literacy development.
  • Evaluate the relationship between cognitive development, language learning, and literacy.
  • Investigate instructional strategies and activities for language acquisition that promote literacy development.
  • Define the components of language: phonology, morphology, semantics, sound-symbol relationship, discourse, and syntax.

Week 2

  • Investigate theories and principles on which differentiated reading instruction is based.
  • Examine instructional approaches for the teaching of reading.
  • Describe the five essential components of reading: phonemic awareness, phonics, fluency, comprehension, and vocabulary.
  • Identify the specific state content standards for K–8 reading and English language arts.

Week 3

  • Differentiate between phonemic awareness, phonological awareness, and phonics.
  • Evaluate the importance of phonemic awareness as a predictor of reading skills.
  • Explore how disorders, such as dyslexia, may impact learners’ ability to read.
  • Compare methods and approaches for phonics instruction.
  • Assess the importance of progress monitoring to identify learner strengths, weaknesses, and growth in reading.
  • Explore assessment types and methods for evaluating phonics mastery and reading performance.

Week 4

  • Investigate the use of print awareness and concepts for teaching reading.
  • Describe the transition from word decoding to fluency.
  • Compare the relationship between fluency, vocabulary, and comprehension.
  • Examine strategies for developing oral reading fluency.
  • Analyze the significance of parental support and involvement in reading development.
  • Identify screening tools and assessments used to alert educators to potential reading problems.

Week 5

  • Investigate factors that impact reading comprehension.
  • Explain schema theory and its relation to reading comprehension.
  • Apply the strategy of pre-reading, reading, and post-reading activities for reading instruction.
  • Examine the use of close reading for building comprehension of complex text.
  • Describe the connection between reading and writing in literacy development.

Week 6

  • Explore ways to incorporate children’s literature in the elementary classroom.
  • Analyze strategies for promoting student engagement in books.
  • Classify multimedia and educational technologies that support reading development.
  • Examine methods for differentiating reading materials.
  • Investigate instructional principles and strategies for teaching students with linguistic, cultural, academic, and cognitive diversity.


Why take courses at University of Phoenix

Accreditation that matters

We’ve been accredited by the Higher Learning Commission ( for more than 40 years.

Real-world instructors

Learn from instructors who bring an average of 25 years of working experience to the classroom.

Affordable and potentially reimbursable

Our tuition and fees are competitive and fixed. Also, check to see if your employer will cover you for this course.

Next Steps

Start a conversation about your future with an enrollment representative today.

Start a conversation about your future with an enrollment representative today.

Call (844) 937-8679

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