Reading & Language Development/International Dyslexia Association & International Literacy Association Accredited

Reading and Language Development News


The Remedial Reading and Remedial Language Arts certificate and program options at Fairfield are aligned with standards of both the International Literacy Association (ILA) and the International Dyslexia Association (IDA). 

Specialized Training: Dyslexia

The Program has met the knowledge and practice standards articulated by the International Dyslexia Association and is accredited by the International Dyslexia Association and its affiliate, the Center for Effective Reading Instruction. 

Initiatives & Partnerships

We establish innovative partnerships with districts and agencies that are dedicated to ensuring that educators possess the requisite knowledge and skills to positively impact reading achievement.

Anne E. Fowler Fellowship

Candidates working in an urban and priority school district, or who are willing to accept a position in an urban or priority school district, are eligible to apply to become a part-time or full-time Anne E. Fowler Literacy Fellow.   

Tuition & Fees

Candidates may be surprised to discover that the cost of attending Fairfield’s Reading and Language Development Program is extremely competitive.

Director's Welcome

Jule McCombes-TolisI am pleased to welcome you to the Reading and Language Development (RLD) Program at Fairfield University.

The Reading and Language Development Program offers coursework that is aligned with standards of both the International Literacy Association (ILA) and the International Dyslexia Association (IDA).

All degree and certificate offerings prepare individuals who are interested in positively impacting students’ literacy achievement profiles by translating scientific reading research into artful, creative, and engaging teaching practices.

Programs are designed for the working professional and feature the following life-balance considerations:

  • Two year program completion timeline
  • Courses scheduled one day per week, back to back (with the exception of practica)
  • Two-week intensive (evening) summer coursework
  • Supervised practicum experiences embedded in after-school and summer-school programs
  • Fellowship appointments that provide tuition scholarship, financial stipends of up to $30,000, and negotiated leaves of absence from district teaching responsibilities

Candidates complete two supervised practicum experiences with students who qualify for intervention or remediation support. The latter features the provision of structured literacy interventions for students at-risk for, or identified with, dyslexia. Candidates in this program are prepared to earn national certification with The International Dyslexia Association.


As a former literacy specialist and elementary school administrator, I am impressed with the level of rigor and numerous clinical experiences …the coursework emphasizes evidence-based instruction with real-world application that mirrors the work our teachers are engaged in on a daily basis in all tiers of instruction.

(J.G. Norwalk Public Schools)


Coursework is presented through a gradual release model, with faculty explaining, modeling, and guiding candidates in the acquisition of essential knowledge and skills before then providing them with the opportunity to independently engage applied work with students.

Candidates in the Program develop a Professional Resource Portfolio that includes an extensive reference set of strategies to support literacy achievement among diverse student populations, a collection of professional development workshop presentations for parent and educator audiences, and a set of lesson planning and delivery templates for core, intervention, and remediation purposes.

If you are deeply committed to positively impacting students’ literacy achievement profiles, and are interested in learning how to do so from a scientific, research-based orientation, I would encourage you to apply today!

Jule McCombes-Tolis, Ph.D.
Director, Reading and Language Development

After completing your online application for admission I encourage you to sign up for an interview.

Financing Your Studies

Learn more about opportunities to finance your studies. 

Application Process

Learn more about our formal application process. 

Attend an Information Session

Come meet the Dean of the Graduate School of Education and Allied Professions and Faculty from the Reading and Language Development Program to learn more about our degree and certificate offerings.

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