Montana LINCS Update


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1.   Discussion on Teacher Certification and Credentialing in Adult Education


Taken from LINCS Professional Development Discussion List

A rich discussion about Teacher Certification and Credentialing in Adult Education can be found at


Here are some snippets:


Michelle Janysek captures it:


“We want adult education to be a "professional" field, but we currently have a part time, under prepared workforce. We seem reluctant to set high expectations for training/qualifications due to time, limited funding, etc. However, current policy and funding fall short of what we need to hire full time, dedicated and adequately prepared professionals. So, which comes first, professionalizing the field or increased funding and supportive policy?”


Cristine Smith shared what she learned examining the K-12 research on teacher quality and teacher characteristics (including certification and credentialing):

“When I looked closer, I found an interesting hypothesis in two very recent K-12 research studies. One study focused on teacher certification and quality of elementary school teachers; the other focused on teacher certification and quality of secondary school teachers. What I found interesting is that the connection between teacher certification and student achievement was weak for teachers at the elementary level, but that same connection was significant at the secondary level, particularly (if I remember correctly) for math teachers. In other words, teacher certification didn't play that big of a role for primary school teachers, but it did play a somewhat significant role for high school teachers. The hypothesis is that greater subject matter content (which is always part of certification at the secondary level where teachers teach specific subjects like math and science) MAY BE related to higher teacher quality for secondary school teachers, but mastering subject matter content perhaps is not as related to teacher quality for elementary school teachers, who teach all subjects in their single-grade classrooms.”

Common Thread


Do credentials alone make a good teacher? Is it just a layer of bureaucracy or a meaningful way to improve instructional quality? Are we losing excellent instructors/volunteers that would be unable or unwilling to subject themselves to the process?


2.   Math


Taken from LINCS

More Than Reshuffling at by Steve Hinds of the City University of New York describes the math program for freshmen who failed multiple placement exams. This article includes sections on program structure, how expansion of math curriculum was accomplished, enrollment and retention information, assessment of student learning, comparison of CTI math teaching and learning with standards and common remedial math reform efforts in community colleges, and institutional and other conditions that need to be in place to make this sort of pedagogical change. This paper provides important information for GED and college transitions teachers and directors. This resource is a companion paper to More Than Rules and it is suggested that More Than Rules be read before this article.

On June 17, 2011, Brooke Istas, moderator of the Math and Numeracy Discussion List, led a webinar on Preparing Students for College-Level Math. The webinar explored the various strategies to prepare adult education students for success in college-level mathematics. Math anxiety, math journals, goal setting, college placement exams, and math labs were some of the topics discussed in this session. There were more than 100 participants who took part in this webinar training. This webinar is archived at


3.   Professional Development Discussion:  Using Video in Teaching and Staff Development – July 25-29


Taken from LINCS Professional Development Discussion List

Using Video in Teaching and Staff Development

A two-part discussion hosted on the Professional Development

and Technology and Distance Learning Discussion Lists


Are you seeking new or innovative ways to use video in either teaching or staff development? Are you curious about how others use video for teaching or professional learning in adult education? Join this two part discussion hosted on the Professional Development and Technology and Distance Learning Lists to learn more.


Part I: The Multi-Dimensions of Staff Development—Using Videos for Instructor PD

Date: July 25 – 29, 2011

To participate, subscribe (free): Adult Literacy Professional Development Discussion List at


Description: Have you wondered what online options are available to you for staff development that give you an “inside view” of other adult education classrooms? Join us to learn how online video is being used effectively with teachers for staff development, including staff development for ABE, GED, ESOL, and integrating technology into instruction. Discussion List subscribers will also vote on the video category they wish to view, then we will experience using video for professional development. Hear from our guests and share your own experiences.



·       Branka Marceta, Project Coordinator, OTAN. Branka is the coordinator of technology projects at the Outreach and Technical Assistance Network (OTAN) for adult educators, a leadership project with Adult Education Office, California Department of Education.


·       David J. Rosen, President, Newsome Associates. David is the co-founder and President of the Media Library of Teaching Skills (MLoTS) a small organization dedicated to making and hosting a free library of adult education classroom and tutoring videos for professional development.


·       Marian Thacher, Director, OTAN. Marian has been involved with the development of professional development videos on technology integration with OTAN for 10 years.


Part II: Using Video with Adult Learners

Date: August 15-19, 2011

To participate, subscribe (free): Technology and Distance Learning Discussion List at


Description: Join us to learn how video is being used with adult learners. While this technology has been around for some time, we will explore how the increase in access to the creation, editing, and sharing of videos through cell phone technology and social media sites like YouTube, as well as relatively inexpensive video cameras like the Flip, is making it easier and more fun to include video in instruction. We will also discuss how the use of premade video content is being used in classrooms and at a distance. Tools, techniques, and content discussed will be shared on ALE Wiki as an ongoing resource.


Guests: To be announced.


4.   Technology Resource:  Facebook with Students


Taken from LINCS Technology/Distance Learning Discussion List

Some teachers have told me that they are uncomfortable "friending" their students  or requiring classmates to "friend" one another as that forces quite a deep level of connection and sharing or exposure of information that folks might not want. 

There are two ways I've found to get around these issues.  One is creating a Facebook Page for your class or agency.  A Facebook Page allows people who "like" the page to share information without directly connecting as "Friends."  The second way is to set up "Friend Lists" within your "friends" in Facebook and then choose what you share with each list.  Here's a video that show you how to create friend lists .


Nell Eckersley, Moderator


5.   Technology Resource:  Youtube Not Accessible?  Alternatives to Using Youtube


Taken from LINCS Technology/Distance Learning Discussion List

Here is a link to a post by Richard Byrnes of FreeTech4Teachers listing 47 Alternatives to YouTube to Use in the Classroom.


6.   Vocabulary


Taken from LINCS

Direct and Rich Vocabulary Instruction at provides teachers with ways to set up a language-rich experience for students. Like much research on vocabulary development, the chapter is focused on children, but the strategies could be used in a classroom of adults with limited reading comprehension and vocabulary, either native English speakers or English Language Learners. The authors describe three tiers of words, recommending that teachers focus on Tier 2 words that are found in a variety of domains, have multiple meanings, and have high-frequency.

7.   Writing


Taken from LINCS

Two companion resources are now available in the topic of writing. Literacy and Numeracy for Adults: Write to Communicate at contains what adult writers should know and be able to do at each of six proficiency levels. This resource also contains other educator resources, learner resources, and assessments. Learning Progressions for Adult Literacy and Numeracy at provides the theoretical and research base behind the Write to Communicate resource. Both are products of the New Zealand Tertiary Education Commission.


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