Date Approved


Graduate Degree Type


Degree Name

Education-Literacy Studies: Reading (M.Ed.)

Degree Program

College of Education

First Advisor

Elizabeth Petroelje Stolle

Academic Year



With the literacy achievement gap growing, particularly in urban schools, many teachers are missing the training, tools, and support necessary to best meet the needs of their students beyond the curriculum given. This project argues the importance of sustainable teacher improvement through reflective, collaborative professional development and the support of a literacy coach. To attain the highest impact on student achievement, teachers must have a deep understanding of their students as well as evaluate their current teaching practices to identify where students may need additional support and what classroom practices may need to be adjusted. By providing students with a range of opportunities to be heard and hear the voices of others through responses, discussion, and texts, students can be positively impacted in their literacy achievement, engagement, and motivation. A literacy coach supports the teacher beyond training by facilitating reflective conversations that assist teachers in applying new ideas and strategies. This project provides a framework for collaborative, reflective professional development focusing on motivating students to engage with literature and one another with the continued support of a literacy coach with the goals of increasing student achievement and teacher proficiency in best practices when teaching literacy.