Montana LINCS Update


Greetings from Montana LINCS


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1.    Montana High School Equivalency Test – HiSET – ABE Informational Webinar Now Archived Along with Presentation


Unable to attend Montana HiSET webinar? 


All of the HiSET documents have been posted on one HiSET link at



2.    Montana High School Equivalency Test – HiSET – Clarification about GED Testing Service® Claims


Click here to read HiSET facts and HiSET’s response to GED Testing Service® claims.

Have you checked out the ETS website for HiSET, the High School Equivalency Test?  If not, click here .

Take a look at the following:

·       Test at a Glance

·       Sample Questions

·       Practice Tests

o   Language Arts–Reading (PDF)

o   Language Arts–Writing (PDF)

o   Mathematics (PDF)

o   Science (PDF)

o   Social Studies (PDF)

Please contact Margaret Bowles, Adult Literacy and Basic Education Specialist, if you have any questions.


3.  Montana Alt Ed Summit:  Designing the Future of Learning


NOTICE:  The Montana Alt Ed Summit has been postponed until this fall.  More information will be coming this summer.  You may still register and receive an invitation at


4.    Research Snippet: Improving Adult Literacy Instruction – Options for Practice and Research, National Academy of Sciences, 2012


Principles of Learning for Instructional Design


If you have been reading through the last few snippets of research, you will find that many of the same concepts have been presented via Learning to Achieve.  Sometimes information doesn’t have to be new; it just needs to be presented in variety of ways.  Teachable moments can also occur TO those of us in the field.  Teaching an “old dog new tricks” can involve being reminded that strategies we already know and use are viable for success in the classroom.  


With that in mind, let’s finish up this section on Instructional Design.  Have you had a chance to look at the College and Career Readiness Standards for Adult Education at ?The final two shifts in the English Language Arts and Literacy standards sharpen the focus on the close connection between comprehension of text and acquisition of knowledge.   


College and Career Readiness Standards for Adult Education, Page 9


If we are to engage our students in more complex material, we must find successful ways to achieve this. 


There is moderate evidence that learning of complex material requires adaptive learning environments that are sensitive to the learner’s general profile and to the level of his or her mastery at any given point in time … Individualized adaptive training has been used successfully to build cognitive skills among older learners (Erickson et al., 2007; Jaeggi et al., 2008; Kramer et al., 1999; Kramer, Larish, and Strayer, 1995).


Many programs find that an adaptive learning environment can be achieved via the use of technology.


Computer environments, rather than human instructors, may have the most promise in manipulating and controlling these complex interventions because of the complexity of diagnoses and remediation mechanisms.


However, the human factor will never be discounted.


There is moderate evidence that learners benefit from instructional interactions in which they receive fine-grained feedback (i.e., feedback specific to the immediate momentary task at hand) with hints that prompt them to generate knowledge (Ainsworth, 2008; Chi, Roy, and Hausmann, 2008; Graesser, D’Mello, and Person, 2009; Graesser, Person, and Magliano, 1995; VanLehn et al., 2007). Various teaching methods include such interactions: reciprocal teaching method, modeling-scaffolding-fading, the Socratic method, refutation, and others.


ABLE instructors have many techniques which provide hints to the learners.  Those strategies have been shared most recently by participants during SIA training in the math area.  For the most part, blended learning via technology and human interaction proves to be successful tool.  However, learning is enhanced if it has a purpose.


There is some evidence that anchored learning practices help learning (Bottge et al., 2007; Collins, Brown, and Newman, 1989; Dede and Grotzer, 2009; National Research Council, 2000). Anchored learning refers to developing knowledge and skill while working on problems encountered in the real world … Anchored learning has features that are likely to motivate struggling adult learners who are sensitive to the value of their learning experience.


So is the research providing any surprises?  We know that a positive learning experience does NOT occur in a vacuum.  Therefore, providing a purposeful learning experience is best.  This, in turn, enhances students’ motivation.


It is well known that adults are more motivated when the learning experience and materials are consonant with existing interests and dispositions (Ackerman and Rolfhus, 1999; Beier and Ackerman, 2001, 2003, 2005), and when engaged in reading or writing for a real purpose.


Although research reminds us to infuse rigor into our instruction, use technology, clarify problem areas for individuals, and ask WHY along the way, we need to remember the value of the adult learner and his/her needs.


… motivation among adults is also more likely to be enhanced when instruction helps to build self-confidence and self-efficacy and develops the student’s identity as a person who reads. Adults with literacy problems often have experienced being stigmatized or marginalized, which makes enhancing self-confidence especially important. Because past experiences may have been very painful, interventions need to accommodate the occurrence of negative emotions, such as frustration, anger, boredom, and disengagement.


Improving Adult Literacy Instruction – Options for Practice and Research, Page 140-146


If what we are doing is valuable to the student, then is it not right?  Now that is a question that might be answered in the last portion of this year’s review of the research.


Stay tuned for Motivation, Engagement, and Persistence!


National Information

5.  Adult Education College and Career Readiness Standards for Adult Education

Taken from LINCS Community:  Evidence-based Professional Development

Just Released: College and Career Readiness (CCR) Standards for Adult Education at

The work is the result of a nine-month process that examined the Common Core State Standards from the perspective of adult education. It was funded to provide a set of manageable yet significant CCR standards that reflect broad agreement among subject matter experts in adult education about what is desirable for adult students to know to be prepared for the rigors of postsecondary education and training.

The report, available at:, was written by Susan Pimentel, prepared by MPR, Associates, Inc. for the U.S. Department of Education, Office of Vocational and Adult Education.

If you have any questions please contact Ronna Spacone at

6.  Career Pathways:  National Center for Innovation and Career and Technical Education Launches Website

Taken from OVAE Connection

The National Center for Innovation and Career and Technical Education (NCICTE), funded in 2012 and authorized under the Carl D. Perkins Career and Technical Education Act of 2006 (Perkins IV), has launched its website at  It features proposed research by the center, related research in the CTE resource section, and online training modules that provide guidance for translating the center’s studies into application at your college, district, or school.

7.  Reading:  Making Sense of Decoding and Spelling Webinar Materials

Taken from LINCS Community:  Reading and Writing

Just a reminder about other resources!

While at this time we will not be posting the webinar online, there are several resources and avenues of follow-up for those interested in diving deeper into this topic. We highly recommend the following:

·        Resources:

·        Archived discussion about this curriculum and other related research:

Ongoing forum discussion for follow-up questions and comments:

 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