UCL Graduate degrees


Reading Recovery and Literacy Leadership MA

The Reading Recovery and Literacy Leadership MA, led by the Reading Recovery leadership team at UCL Institute of Education (IOE), combines practical and theoretical elements. This course is a full-time commitment. Students attend IOE for sessions regularly throughout the year with the remainder of time spent locally teaching in a school, completing fieldwork tasks and academic study.

Key information

Please note: We are sorry but this programme is not accepting applications for 2020/21 entry.

Please see the full list of Graduate Taught programmes for information on other programmes available.

Programme starts

September 2020

Modes and duration

Part time: 2 years

Students can exit after one year as a qualified Reading Recovery Teacher Leader, with a PG Dip. To complete the full MA award, a report is completed in Year 2 on a part-time basis.

Application dates

This programme is not open to applications for 2020 entry.

Tuition fees (2020/21)

See Fees Note (PT)
See Fees Note (PT)

Note on fees: The tuition fees shown are for the year indicated above. Fees for subsequent years may increase or otherwise vary. Further information on fee status, fee increases and the fee schedule can be viewed on the UCL Students website. Fees for this programme are available on request from the department. Year 1 is taken on-campus and usually consists of 150 credits. Year 2 is taken Distance Learning and usually consists of 30 credits.


Successful students become qualified Reading Recovery Teacher Leaders.  Accreditation is maintained annually in line with established standards for implementing Reading Recovery internationally.

Location: London, Bloomsbury

Entry requirements

A minimum of a second-class Bachelor's degree from a UK university or an overseas qualification of an equivalent standard, Qualified Teacher Status, at least two years' full-time relevant experience (equivalent to Key Stage 1 in England), and a Reading Recovery teacher's qualification.

If applicants do not have a degree, a qualifying route is available which involves the submission of an essay or presentation of a portfolio of previous work. If the applicant is not qualified in Reading Recovery an additional pre-course unit can be negotiated (at extra cost).

English language requirements

If your education has not been conducted in the English language, you will be expected to demonstrate evidence of an adequate level of English proficiency.

The English language level for this programme is: Good

Pre-Master's and Pre-sessional English

Further information can be found on our English language requirements page.

International students

Country-specific information, including details of when UCL representatives are visiting your part of the world, can be obtained from the International Students website.

International applicants can find out the equivalent qualification for their country by selecting from the list below.

Select your country:

About this degree

This programme trains Teacher Leaders in Reading Recovery™. You will be equipped with the current research in early literacy, the theories of Marie Clay underpinning Reading Recovery, the skills required to manage an implementation in a local education authority or education system, and the ability to lead high-quality professional development for practising Reading Recovery teachers.

Students undertake modules to the value of 180 credits.

The programme consists of three core modules (150 credits), and a report (30 credits).

Upon successful completion of 180 credits, you will be awarded a MA in Reading Recovery and Literacy Leadership.

Please note that the list of modules given here is indicative. This information is published a long time in advance of enrolment and module content and availability is subject to change.

Compulsory modules

  • The Theory and Practice of Reading Recovery: Children, teachers and schools
  • Research Methods in Literacy
  • Literacy Development

Optional modules

There are no optional modules for this programme.

Visit the UCL Institute of Education website for more information, including module descriptions, which can be seen by clicking on the module title.


All students submit a report of up to 10,000 words on an aspect of their professional role.


Teaching of children in Reading Recovery can take place in the student's own locality. Students bring children to be taught at a one-way screen at least twice during the full-time training year.  


Placements to observe professional development for teachers are arranged by the programme team. Every effort is made for this placement to be near to the home locality, but it may be that the placement is some distance away. Travel to this placement occurs for three or four half-days each term.

Teacher leaders in training and their providers are responsible for arranging a suitable local school placement. Guidance will be offered so that this placement meets programme requirements.

Teaching and learning

The programme involves working with children in Reading Recovery, fieldwork sessions, online discussion sessions undertaken locally and full day and evening sessions taught face-to-face at IOE.

Additional costs

When the programme is based in London, the cost of a child and adult travelling to London for teaching at the one-way screen is covered in the programme fees. When the one-way screen used is local to the student, costs are not covered by programme fees

The cost of travel to schools and education centres in the student's locality are not covered by programme fees.

For more information on additional costs for prospective students please go to our estimated cost of essential expenditure at Accommodation and living costs.


Details of the accessibility of UCL buildings can be obtained from AccessAble. Further information can also be obtained from the UCL Student Support & Wellbeing team.


Scholarships relevant to this department are displayed below.

IOE-Clarke Scholarships

Deadline Monday 25 May 2020 (5pm London time).
Tuition fees, stipend, flights (1 year)
Based on both academic merit and financial need

IOE-ISH Centenary Masters Scholarships

Deadline: Monday 18 May 2020 (5pm London time).
Full tuition fees and accommodation (1 year)
Based on both academic merit and financial need

For a comprehensive list of the funding opportunities available at UCL, including funding relevant to your nationality, please visit the Scholarships and Funding website.


The programme trains Teacher Leaders for Reading Recovery in the UK and across Europe. In addition to achieving a Masters in Reading Recovery and Literacy Leadership, on graduation students are recognised as accredited Reading Recovery Teacher Leaders.


Students become highly skilled in Reading Recovery teaching techniques, adept facilitators of teachers’ professional development, and proficient administrators of a complex and detailed intervention in an education system.

Why study this degree at UCL?

This demanding and challenging programme was first established in 1991 when Marie Clay, who developed Reading Recovery, was a visiting professor at the IOE.

Participants will develop or enhance their understanding of how the lowest achieving children can be assisted to overcome their learning difficulties.

There are opportunities for participants to network with their future colleagues across Europe if they attend the annual professional development meeting that is organised for all Reading Recovery Teacher Leaders.


Successful students become qualified Reading Recovery Teacher Leaders.  Accreditation is maintained annually in line with established standards for implementing Reading Recovery internationally.

Department: Learning & Leadership

Application and next steps


Students are advised to apply as early as possible due to competition for places. Those applying for scholarship funding (particularly overseas applicants) should take note of application deadlines.

There is an application processing fee for this programme of £80 for online applications and £105 for paper applications. Further information can be found at: www.ucl.ac.uk/prospective-students/graduate/taught/application.

Who can apply?

This programme is suitable for successful and experienced practitioners who will be preparing and supporting teachers to deliver Reading Recovery in schools. Practitioners will be working for a local authority or equivalent education provider, and will need to be available to travel to London for teaching blocks across the year, each lasting two to three days and to visit professional development groups in their region.

Application deadlines

This programme is not open to applications for 2020 entry.

To become a Reading Recovery Teacher Leader students need to be appointed by an approved education provider. For an informal discussion on approved providers please email ilc@ioe.ac.uk.

For more information see our Applications page.

Apply now

What are we looking for?

When we assess your application we would like to learn:

  • why you want to study Reading Recovery and Literacy Leadership at graduate level
  • why you want to study Reading Recovery and Literacy Leadership at UCL
  • what particularly attracts you to this programme
  • how your academic and professional background meets the demands of this programme
  • where you would like to go professionally with your degree

Together with essential academic requirements, the personal statement is your opportunity to illustrate whether your reasons for applying to this programme match what the programme will deliver.

UCL is regulated by the Office for Students.

Page last modified on 13 August 2020