Ph.D. LCID Specialization in Literacy Education

Program Details

Area(s) of Study:
  • Literacy Education
Associated Degree:
  • Ph.D.
  • On-Campus
Program Level:
  • Doctoral
Program Type:
  • Degree


The specialization in Literacy Education within the Learning, Cognition, Instruction, and Development concentration prepares students to conduct qualitative and quantitative empirical research advancing development of literacy theory and its application to practice. This specialization explores research and theory as they apply to teachers, learners, and policymaking across the human lifespan and the professional continuum. Our students become well grounded in current epistemologies and theories such as:

  • multimodal and digital literacies;
  • new literacy studies;
  • critical literacy;
  • literacy and identity; and
  • numerous approaches to teaching reading and writing.

Students’ work is undergirded by the assumption that people improve and acquire literacy skills while interacting with a broad variety of texts in diverse contexts; literacy is socially constructed and enacted. This specialization places a strong emphasis on developing the skills of the researcher:

  • Research design
  • Development and use of qualitative and quantitative research tools
  • Data analysis
  • Writing for academic and general audiences
  • Using research as a vehicle to advance theory, practice, and optimizing literacy learning


Please visit to apply. (Online applications are required.)

Applications are due by December 1 for fall admission.

Students applying to this program will need:

  • Transcripts from their undergraduate program and for any other degree they have received.
  • Three letters of recommendation.
  • GRE scores (from within the last five years) -verbal, quantitative, and analytic writing are necessary. For more information on the GRE, please go to
  • A personal statement that describes why you are interested in pursuing a Ph.D. in Education at Rutgers, what you would like to study and research, and what qualities and experiences you would bring to the Rutgers GSE—In more than 1,000 words total, we ask you to address the following questions:


    • Why do you want to earn a Ph.D. in Education, and what are your long-term goals?
    • What are your research interests within the field of education?
    • What do you bring to the program that will help you succeed as a researcher and professional colleague?
    • Why is the Rutgers GSE an appropriate doctoral program in which to pursue your research interests? Please describe your interests in specific concentrations/areas of study and/or your interest in working with a certain faculty member(s).

Please refer to the GSE website for details about programs, faculty, admissions criteria, financial aid, and tuition. Questions about admissions procedures are answered by Graduate and Professional Admissions at the website listed above.


Proseminars (6 credits)
Required Research (6 credits)
Methodology (12 credits) Concentration (18 Credits)
Cognate Courses (6 Credits) Dissertation (24 credits)

Program Requirements

The Ph.D. in Education requires 48 credits of coursework and 24 credits of dissertation research. All students in the Learning, Cognition, Instruction, and Development concentration take a common set of courses, accumulating 18 credits within the concentration, of which 6 credits must be classes within the concentration but outside the faculty adviser’s specialty.

A complete listing of degree requirements is available for download or at the Office of Student and Academic Services.

If you have more specific questions about this concentration, please contact Erica Boling.