The Course

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The Science of Reading Short Course is comprised of five, self-paced modules that can be completed in approximately ten hours. Each module has clearly stated objectives, explicitly written background information, useful video demonstrations, numerous graphic illustrations, and a variety of downloadable resources and links. Based on adult learning theory, each module includes activities to reinforce concepts, intermittent feedback through the use of checks for understanding, and a final knowledge check to support mastery of concepts. The modules are based on more than forty years of research, including several foundational conceptual modules that explain how reading works:

  1. How Students Learn to Read: An Introduction to the Science of Reading
  2. Structured Literacy
  3. Word Recognition: An Encounter with Phonics
  4. The Language Comprehension Domain
  5. The Reading Comprehension Domain
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Who benefits most from this course?

The SOR course is designed primarily for teachers (new and veteran) and teacher candidates:

  • Who may have heard the national discussions regarding “the science of reading” and want to learn more about its application;
  • Whose own preparation in reading did not address instruction through the lens of established and recognized cognitive and education research;
  • Who may not have access to professional development based on the cognitive and education research; and
  • Who are interested in accruing meaningful continuing education hours that improves their instruction in early literacy.

This course also provides an accessible but rigorous introduction to the Science of Reading for schools and districts making a transition to science-based reading curriculum and instruction, establishing a common framework, language, and experience for teachers and administrators. 

Who else could benefit from the SOR course?

  • School leaders interested in building their knowledge of evidence-based practices to better guide instruction
  • Curriculum & Instruction directors who are making decisions about reading and intervention programs
  • Educator preparation faculty who desire a framework for shaping their pre-service curriculum in early literacy courses
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Continuing Education Credits

The Science of Reading Short Course is designed to include 10 hours of instruction and activities, which is the equivalent of 1.0 CEUs. Upon completion of all five modules and the post-assessment, a personalized, signed certificate of completion will be awarded. Teachers and other education professionals across the United States and in several countries use courses offered by The Big Dipper partners to meet state and local licensing, relicensing, and professional development requirements. Please review your local policies for specific credit request and relicensure processes and policies. Continuing education credit is the final decision of your school district, continuing education committee, or other relevant authority.


The Science of Reading Short Course, including a robust set of downloadable, printable, and reusable classroom and teacher resources, costs $100 for six months of full access. Groups of 10 or more are eligible for a 25% per person discount.