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Become an expert literacy educator-scholar in your field with our flexible, challenging PhD program in Language and Literacy Education.

Develop close mentoring relationships with our award-winning faculty for support and guidance through your program. You will have numerous opportunities to apprentice on research projects, author articles and book chapters, present at national and international conferences, and teach university courses.

Our department includes faculty who are experts in three areas of language and literacy: English education, literacies and children's literature, and TESOL/world language education. As a student, you may select an emphasis from among five areas that align with the Georgia Performance Standards requirements for certification upgrade.

English education at UGA balances important traditions and new ideas as well as theory and practice in an exclusive setting that allows for extensive personal attention.

Program Highlights

  1. Our elementary education graduate programs ranked 5th in the nation by U.S. News & World Report
  2. Our secondary education graduate programs ranked 6th in the nation by U.S. News & World Report
  3. Graduates eligible for high levels of teaching certification from the Georgia Professional Standards Commission
  4. Nationally and internationally celebrated faculty
  5. Graduates placed nationally in top-tier universities

Deadline to Apply

3rd Friday in January for Fall, Spring, or Summer

Faculty and Curriculum

In our PhD in Language and Literacy Education, you will become proficient in your chosen area of concentration through formal internships (in both research and university teaching), special courses and independent research projects.

You will be required to take our introductory seminar (LLED 8000) and four research courses, as well as complete a research apprenticeship and fulfill the diversity studies requirement. Students who wish to qualify for the Georgia Professional Standards Commission T6 or T7 promotions must consult planning sheets for their emphasis area.

In consultation with a major professor, students form a doctoral committee made of faculty who reflect the student's research goals. This team charts a path through the coursework, the comprehensive examination, the prospectus, and eventual dissertation.

You will gain a broad core of proficiencies through the language and literacy education program's courses as well as courses in other departments and programs. Candidates become proficient in their chosen area of concentration through formal internships (in both research and university teaching), special courses, independent research projects, and, often, paid assistantship duties.

A hallmark of our program is the close mentoring relationships doctoral candidates develop with our award-winning faculty.

In consultation with a major professor, you will form a doctoral committee comprised of faculty who reflect your specific research goals. This team will help you chart out a path through your coursework, comprehensive examination, prospectus, and eventual dissertation.

To receive your doctoral degree, you will take a minimum of 40 semester hours of academic credit. This includes a minimum of 30 semester hours for admission to candidacy (16 hours of which must be 8000 and 9000 level courses) and 10 hours of dissertation work. Requirements include:

  • An introductory seminar (LLED 8000)
  • Four research methodology courses
  • A research apprenticeship
  • Diversity studies

The research apprenticeship pairs doctoral students with our nationally and internationally recognized faculty on a range of research activities. Past students have worked on writing grants, research design and implementation, collaborative writing and presenting, and community service work.

If you wish to qualify for a T6- or T7-level promotion, you are required to take three specific courses that align with your teaching field and initial certification, as determined by the Georgia Professional Standards Commission. See your program of study form for more information.

Tuition and Financial Aid

Almost all in-state students begin their studies at UGA paying limited tuition or fees. Please note that these amounts are subject to change and are meant to give prospective students an idea of the costs associated with a degree at the University of Georgia College of Education.

Students may qualify for a variety of assistantships, scholarships, and other financial awards to help offset the cost of tuition, housing, and other expenses.

Tuition rates Browse financial aid

Meet Your Advisor

Most graduate students at UGA are not assigned to a faculty advisor until after admittance. A close working relationship with your advisor is paramount to progressing through your program of study.

Find your advisor

Student Life

As a doctoral student in language and literacy education, you will find yourself immersed in a true learning community: one that cultivates a culture of well-being, belonging, contribution, communication, and exploration.

Collaborate with your peers by participating in the Journal of Language and Literacy Education, the Language & Literacy Education Graduate Organization, and the Children's Literature Conference.

Book a campus visit

See for yourself how much UGA College of Education has to offer! Schedule a tour of campus to learn more about the UGA student experience.

Schedule a visit


Part 1: Apply to the University of Georgia

The Graduate School handles admission for all graduate programs at the University of Georgia, including those in the College of Education. The Graduate School website contains important details about the application process, orientation, and many other useful links to guide you through the process of attending UGA at the graduate level.

Start a Graduate School Application

Part 2: Apply to the PhD in Language and Literacy Education (English Education)

Applicants are required to submit official GRE scores. Miller Analogies Test (MAT) scores can be considered as well, but only if GRE scores are received. International applicants should submit official TOEFL or IELTS scores. While completing your Graduate School application, please include the following documents:

  • Current resume/CV
  • GRE or the Miller Analogies Test (MAT) Please note: we can ONLY consider the MAT scores for PhD applicants if GRE scores are also received.
  • TOEFL or IELTS (for international applicants)
  • Statement of Purpose
  • Unofficial transcripts from all institutions attended
  • Three (3) letters of recommendation
  • Writing sample of no more than 20 pages

Email your writing sample to the department and include your name, desired area of emphasis for the PhD program (i.e. English Education, RWCLDL, or World Language Education and TESOL), and the words "writing sample" in the subject line.

Please indicate in your statement of purpose which area of emphasis below you intend to pursue for the PhD program (i.e. English Education, RWCLDL, or World Language Education and TESOL).

Funding consideration will be given to students who apply for Fall by January 1st. Fall is the only admissions term in which funding is awarded each year.

In addition to the Graduate School application, applicants must meet the following requirements:

  1. You must hold a master's degree from an accredited college or university in an area of language and/or literacy education, or a related field.
  2. For US residents, you must submit official GRE scores. You may also submit official Miller Analogies Test (MAT) scores, but those scores can only be considered if we also have your official GRE scores. We recommend the following GRE and MAT scores but will consider GRE/MAT scores in light of the merits of your entire application package.
  3. GRE: at least a score of 295 (if taken after August 2011)
  4. GRE: at least a score of 900 (if taken prior to August 2011)
  5. MAT: at least a score of 408
  6. For International residents, you must take the GRE and TOEFL, or the IELTS. We require the following scores:
  7. GRE Verbal score of 154 or higher
  8. TOEFL: at least a score of 100 with a minimum score of 25 in speaking and a 25 in writing
  9. IELTS: at least a score of 7 with a minimum score of 6.5 in speaking and a 6.5 in writing
  10. For international residents, you must also demonstrate proficiency with two languages with two languages as evidenced by
  11. A bachelor's degree in English linguistics and literature,
  12. A master's degree where English was the medium of instruction
  13. We recommend an undergraduate GPA of a 3.0 or higher
  14. We recommend at least two years teaching experience

If you would like to be considered for departmental funding in addition to being considered for admission tot he program, please complete the assistantship application and email it to after you have submitted the Grad School application.

Returning Applicants

Completed application due:
3rd Friday in January for Fall, Spring, or Summer

Log into existing application

Program Resources

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