Are your OG training courses accredited? 

OG training courses offered through REACH have been subject to peer review and have been recognized and accredited by both the Canadian and American OG professional academies. This accreditation is important as graduates who have completed coursework may want to work professionally as OG Practitioners or OG Classroom Educators and would need to be licensed or accredited to do so. While our OG Trainers can provide trainees information about seeking membership with professional academies, one can also connect with the Canadian Academy of Therapeutic Tutors, Orton-Gillingham (CATT OG) for Canadian professional membership, or the American Academy of Orton-Gillingham Practitioners and Educators (AOGPE) for professional membership in the United States.

How do I become an Orton-Gillingham Practitioner?

The process for becoming an accredited Orton-Gillingham Practitioner aims to provide a strong foundation of understanding of current research and historical influences, as well as deep study of the mechanics of language followed by thorough practice in the OG MSL procedures and clinical practice.

After ensuring that one is eligible to take OG training, an OGP applicant would complete: Foundations of MSLEOG Practitioner training, followed by OGPractitioner Practicum. After successful completion of the practicum, the trainee would be eligible to apply to the Canadian OG Academy (CATT, OG) for certification as an OG Practitioner-Interim and begin working in the field.

The new OG Practitioner-Interim must, over the next 1 - 2 years, complete at least 100 hours of clinical lessons in a one on one situation. This would be  followed by successful completion of Intermediate-level OG Practitioner course. After completion of 100 hours and an intermediate-level course, the OG Practitioner-Interim would be eligible to apply for certification as an OG Practitioner Associate. The academy would then arrange for a field observation of the OG Practitioner with a student, including review of their lessons. After a successful field observation, the CATT supervisor would nominate the OG Practitioner for Associate status. 

Educational steps for becoming an OG Practitioner:

  • Foundations  of MSL by certified trainers)
  • Orton-Gillingham Practitioner Basic coursework  (may be offered in levels)
  • Supervised Practicum
    • *Satisfactory completion of these courses and practicum satisfies coursework requirements for becoming  a member of the Canadian academy at the Practitioner-Associate-Interim level.
    • Practitioner-Associate-Interims may apply for OG Practitioner positions in schools or clinics.
  • OG Intermediate coursework (completed within two years of finishing a Practicum)
  • Field observation by a representative of the Canadian academy
    • *Satisfactory completion of these next pieces will entitle the trainee to be recognized as an Orton-Gillingham Practitioner Associate

Can I start working with OG Tutoring after taking the Foundations of MSLE training course? 

No. A trainee must successfully complete Foundations-level and Basic level courses and a supervised practicum before they are ready to begin practice as an Orton-Gillingham Practitioner.

What is the equivalent to BA or B.Ed. and who decides?

If you are not sure if your education meets the requirements necessary for OG training, contact our office and request a meeting to discuss your particular background and application.

The following are some guidelines to consider:

  • Applicants for OG training must demonstrate a strong command of both spoken and written English.
  • Post-secondary education demonstrates a commitment to ongoing higher education, and completion of coursework requiring writing at a university level. Strong writing skills are also required, since an OG Practitioner will be required to write reports for parents and for the professionals who  also support their students (teachers, speech pathologists, psychologists).
  • Other post-secondary coursework that emphasizes pedagogy, speech and language, psychology and special education is often also accepted as good preparation for the rigors of OG training.
  • The goal is to ensure that those beginning OG Practitioner training have a reasonable opportunity for success.

How would I complete an online practicum? 

REACH provides a practicum either on-site (live observation) or remotely. A remote practicum may be completed via sharing of digital files online and with access to blogs and websites we've developed to support the process. Initial contact between the trainee and their Supervising Mentor is usually conducted through a telephone or Skype meeting.  Lessons conducted by the trainee will need to be digitally recorded and sent to their Trainer or Supervising Mentor immediately after the lessons are conducted, so use of a laptop with camera, high speed internet, a printer and scanner are necessary. As assignments and lessons are completed, the trainee will email or otherwise digitally send files to their Trainer or assigned Supervising Mentor, who will then provide timely written feedback. The REACH practicum process is designed to support community-based intervention for the trainee in their home community and for their personal educational benefit. 

Why has the structure of OG training different than OG courses that were offered in the past?

Our professional community strives to stay current with best practice and research for language instruction. Therefore, refinements in training requirements are always being implemented. The changes in the structure of the training courses were made to incorporate current standards as detailed in the International Dyslexia Association document: Knowledge and Practice Standards for Teachers of Reading.

The new structure also provides increased flexibility for Trainers and participants. Although the training courses must be completed in an order, they do not necessarily need to be completed in one single extended course, as was formerly the case.

Who certifies OG Practitioners? 

The field of Orton-Gillingham / Multisensory Structured Language Education (OG/MSLE) has grown since its inception in the early 1920s. There are several professional bodies around the world who certify practitioners or training programs, although many of them are US based organizations. In Canada, the Canadian Academy of Therapeutic Tutors, Orton-Gillingham (CATT, OG) certifies OG Practitioners, Supervisors, Trainers and training programs and is the primary group to do so. In the United States, AOGPE, IMSLEC and ALTA are the largest organizations to certify Practitioners and programs. Other groups, such as the British Dyslexia Association (BDA) in the UK and the International Dyslexia Association (IDA) in the US, are recently adding to their mandates of disseminating research-based information about dyslexia and entering into the realm of also certifying Practitioners and programs for training educators. All groups have members in many countries. In short, there is no "one certifying body" that certifies all evidence-based instructional approaches such as the OG approach. 

Will REACH hire OG Basic training graduates? 

REACH prides itself on the high quality of Practitioners who teach within our centres. We accept applications from OG Practitioners who have graduated from only fully accredited Orton-Gillingham training programs, certified by our Canadian accrediting body, including our own training courses. We do not hire OG Practitioner applicants who have taken abbreviated coursework or workshops, done only OG readings, or have taken training from a non-recognized program. To find out if another training course is accredited by CATT, OG, contact them via: www.ogtutors.com   

I have been teaching in a classroom for many years and have a strong background in teaching phonics. Can I skip the Foundations of MSLE course and go directly into the Classroom Educator course?

Since the Foundations course provides an overview of OG and MSLE education, reading and writing development, testing and progress monitoring for reading fluency, as well as teaching procedures for conducting phonological awareness lessons in an OG environment, Foundations is a requirement for all applicants wishing to go on to either Practitioner or Classroom Educator coursework and may not be skipped. 

If I took OG training with a practicum under the old system, do I still need to take the Foundations or Intermediate courses, or can I skip them?

While the Foundations coursework is not required for current or grand-mothered/grandfathered OG Practitioners, it is the position of REACH, the Canadian OG Academy and the feedback of graduates, that OG Practitioners who trained prior to the introduction of Principles-level training will benefit from the increased knowledge, current research and procedures studied in that level of training.

I am a classroom teacher but am not sure if I should take training under the Classroom Educator stream or Practitioner stream. What do you suggest? 

The Classroom Educator course is designed to provide teachers with the procedures and resources to offer OG instruction to a classroom or group in a tier 1 or tier 2 setting (classroom or learning resource group). An OG Classroom Educator is not required to complete a supervised practicum and the resources shared are designed to support group instruction.  An OG Classroom Educator is not certified to provide 1:1 instruction in a tutorial or clinical environment. If your goal is to enhance your teaching practice in the classroom or learning assistance centre of your school, the CE course may be right for you. If your hope is to also be able to provide 1:1 tutorials in a private after-school or clinical environment, you may want to consider Practitioner training. Keep in mind that the procedures learned in OG Practitioner training are different than those provided in the CE course and may be time consuming and confusing to adapt to a group environment.

What is your cancellation policy for courses and workshops? 

Withdrawals will be accepted with more than and up to two weeks prior to the scheduled course start date with a 20% withdrawal fee. Withdrawals requests received less than two weeks prior to the scheduled course start date will be accepted less a 30% withdrawal fee. No withdrawals or refunds will be issued on or after the first day of a course.  
A registrant may substitute another person in their seat any time before the first day of a class with no penalty. 
In extenuating circumstances of withdrawal, a registrant may change their registration to the next course occurring within the same academic year (September until August).  If a course is canceled or rescheduled due to low enrollment, REACH will fully refund the applicant or transfer their registration to another event.