This degree brings together key aspects of the Early Childhood Education, Literacy Education, and English Education Programs housed in the Department of Learning, Teaching and Curriculum.

The PhD in Language and Literacies for Social Transformation is designed for individuals seeking to be faculty researchers, language and literacy teacher educators, and leaders in the areas of language and literacy studies, reading education, English education, TESOL, early childhood literacy, children’s literature, and media literacy as well as other areas related to language and literacies that may not fall within one of these traditionally-designated categories.

Centering social justice and equity as core values, the LLST doctoral program prepares students to:

  1. develop foundational knowledge of language and literacies studies;
  2. cultivate a specialization in an area of language and literacies; and
  3. conduct original research and prepare an ongoing research agenda.

This degree is only offered on campus and does not lead to certification.


Degree Requirements

To receive a PhD degree in Language and Literacies for Social Transformation, you must complete a minimum of 72 hours of coursework beyond a bachelor’s degree. This includes 33 to 36 hours of English education courses and 12 to 15 hours of research courses.

View the Language and Literacies for Social Transformation Doctoral Handbook.

Visit Mizzou’s course catalog for a sample plan of study.


Please direct questions about the Language and Literacies for Social Transformation PhD program to Dr. Rob Petrone (

Admission Requirements

You must meet two sets of minimum qualifications in order to be considered for admission:

A committee of faculty members reviews your application’s credentials. You are not guaranteed admission even if you meet the minimum qualifications.

How to Apply

In addition to completing the Graduate Studies application, you must submit the following materials to the Department of Learning, Teaching and Curriculum:

  • Unofficial transcript
  • Statement of Purpose
  • Three letters of recommendation
  • GRE scores
  • TOEFL scores (international students only)

Reading Statement