Montana LINCS Update


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1.   Teacher Certification and Credentialing in Adult Education Discussion:  June 20-24


Click here to subscribe to the Professional Development Discussion List.

Many adult education teachers have been trained and certified in the K-12 system, but have little or no training in teaching adults. Others have experience helping adults, but are not familiar with effective instructional strategies that promote learning. Many do not consider either of these choices to be adequate preparation for adult educators. Join our guests on the Professional Development List June 20-24, 2011, to explore the following questions and more in a discussion of Teacher Certification and Credentialing in Adult Education:


·       What should the qualifications be to teach in adult education programs?

·       What knowledge and skills do you think are needed to teach adults?

·       How does this differ based on different aspects of the field, such as ABE, ASE, ELL, or by different content areas like numeracy?

·       How important is certification and credentialing to you and what would it do for the field? For example, will certification result in greater professionalization of the field?

·       Should we develop systems of certification and credentialing and, if so, what models exist for certifying or credentialing both pre-service and in-service teachers to work with adults?



(Bios online at:


·       Gretchen Bitterlin, ESL Program Chair, San Diego Continuing Education Program, San Diego Community College District. As Program Chair of the ESL program at San Diego Continuing Education Program, Gretchen Bitterlin facilitates the hiring of new instructors and coordinates teacher training for faculty and staff.


·       Miriam Burt, Manager, Adult ESL Projects, Center for Applied Linguistics (CAL). Miriam Burt coordinates projects and products related to providing technical assistance to practitioners whose goal it is to help English language learners improve their English language skills.


·       Forrest Chisman, Vice President, Council for Advancement of Adult Literacy (CAAL). In 2010, Forrest Chisman facilitated a CAAL roundtable meeting on certification and credentialing in adult education and wrote a CAAL report (“Closing the Gap”) based on the background materials for that meeting and the discussion.


·       Lynda Ginsburg, Senior Researcher, Center for Math, Science and Computer Education, Rutgers University. Lynda Ginsburg is a researcher who investigates how adult students learn math and who is involved in professional development projects to help adult educators improve math instruction.


·       Bob Hughes, Associate Professor of Adult Education, Seattle University. Bob Hughes is an associate professor of adult education in the adult education and training program at Seattle University where students earn a master’s degree that prepares them to be adult education instructors and leaders.


·       Cristine Smith, Associate Professor, University of Massachusetts, Amherst. Cristine Smith was the author of CAAL’s paper Certifying Adult Education Staff and Faculty, published in January 2011.


Facilitator: Jackie Taylor, Professional Development List Moderator, Literacy Information and Communication System (LINCS).




·       CLOSING THE GAP: The Challenge of Certification & Credentialing in Adult Education by Forrest P. Chisman:


·       Certifying Adult Education Staff and Faculty

by Associate Professor Cristine Smith of the University of Massachusetts with Ricardo Gomez:  


·       COABE 2011 Conference Workshop on What New Instructors Need: Tell Us!

o   Audio recording


o   Transcript


·       Adult ESL teacher credentialing and certification. Washington, DC: Center for Applied Linguistics

by Jodi Crandall, Genesis Ingersoll, and Jacqueline Lopez


·       Professionalization and Certification for Teachers in Adult Basic Education
John P. Sabatini, Lynda Ginsburg, and Mary Russell

o   Chapter Summary:

o   Full Chapter:


·       TESOL Standards for Adult Education ESL Programs


2.   Learning Disabilities Discussion:  Opening Doors for Students with Dyslexia or Reading Disabilities


Taken from LINCS Learning Disabilities Discussion List

Here are some snippets from this week’s LD Discussion:  Opening Doors for Students with Dyslexia or Reading Disabilities.  Check out other ideas on the LD Discussion list at .

Online Food for Thought

Learned Helplessness and Attribution for Success and Failure in LD Students:

Meeting the Challenges of Maintaining Confidence as a Learner:

Signal Words

While many teachers do give some instruction in "transitions," people with dyslexia or reading disabilities often trip over those little abstract words that should be telling us what to expect.  

There's a rather excellent, categorized list at .

Another site, , has some exercises using signal words.    Added structure make them more accessible to students who struggle with coming up with words and ideas; these are connected to _Harry Potter_ but I will make them connect to something meaningful to my audience.   What I really like about this kind of exercise is that it can stay almost entirely concrete ... or students can take off with their imaginations. This also provides gently guided practice in sentence generation.  has similar exercises from the UK.


A previous article indicated that giving students text already chunked into phrases is *not* particularly effective in helping them understand the text, but working with phrases are an excellent way of engaging students with text.   This is also an excellent extension of the exercises with signal words, which will be found in many of those phrases.  Click here to access phrase activities.

Susan Jones, Academic Development Specialist

Center for Academic Success

Parkland College

Champaign, IL  61821

3.   Summary of LINCS Read/Write Discussion:  Understanding Adult Literacy Growth with Various Measures and Time Scales

Taken from LINCS Read/Write Discussion List

I am pleased to report that you can find a discussion summary of this great discussion with Dr. Stephen Reder at:

Daphne Greenberg, Moderator

4.   Reading Resource:  Teaching Reading to Adults – A pack of resources and ideas for adult literacies tutors


Taken from LINCS Learning Disabilities Discussion List

This is reading resource from Scotland that contains many strategies and ideas for teaching reading to adults. It covers topics such as working with low level readers, working with mixed ability groups, finding appropriate materials, teaching and learning approaches.

Click here to access the site. 

P.S.  Remember -- if you are having trouble with the links in this email, go to the Email Archives at the top of the MTLINCS homepage at .  Also if you no longer wish to receive this mailing, please let me know!  Thanks!


Norene Peterson
Adult Education Center
415 N. 30th
Billings, MT 59101