Literacy Studies, GVSU

Literacy Studies

The Reading/Language Arts Program strives to provide students with the knowledge to be informed teachers.  Our programs facilitate a deep learning experience for in-service and pre-service teachers and is based on valid research and theory on literacy.  Our program has earned National Recognition from the International Reading Association and has been approved by the Michigan Department of Education for the certification of teachers in reading.

The faculty in the Reading/Language Arts Program are deeply involved in scholarly and service activities that promote literacy and literacy education.  Our abiding goal is to bring meaningful literacy experiences to k-12 students and to help teachers understand the ways they can help their students become more literate.  To do this, we acknowledge the complex nature of literacy and embrace the National Council of Teachers of English definition of 21st Century Literacies.

National Council of Teachers of English Definition of 21st Century Literacies

Literacy has always been a collection of cultural and communicative practices shared among members of particular groups. As society and technology change, so does literacy. Because technology has increased the intensity and complexity of literate environments, the twenty-first century demands that a literate person possess a wide range of abilities and competencies, many literacies. These literacies—from reading online newspapers to participating in virtual classrooms—are multiple, dynamic, and malleable. As in the past, they are inextricably linked with particular histories, life possibilities and social trajectories of individuals and groups. Twenty-first century readers and writers need to:

Develop proficiency with the tools of technology

Build relationships with others to pose and solve problems collaboratively and cross-culturally

Design and share information for global communities to meet a variety of purposes

Manage, analyze and synthesize multiple streams of simultaneous information

Create, critique, analyze, and evaluate multi-media texts 

Attend to the ethical responsibilities required by these complex environments