Montana LINCS Update


Greetings from Montana LINCS

  Problems with the links in the email?

Go to the Email Archives in the upper left-hand corner on the home page at

Check out the newest postings from EQ 2014 – pictures included!

Montana Information

1.   HiSET Blast

Check out many new items below:  Marketing, Success Story, Research about HiSET Passing Scores, etc.!


HiSET® Program eUpdate | September 2014

Resources for States and Educators and Test Center Staff

Answer sheets for the HiSET® practice exams are now available in the Download Library. These blank answer sheets correspond to the practice exams and can be printed and photocopied for your test center.

Test Center Reminders

For PBT Centers:

In 2015, HiSET Test Books will be packaged by battery. You will be able to order nine different battery forms, each containing all five subtests (A-1, A-2, A-3, B-1, B-2, B-3, C-1, C-2, C-3). We will send you detailed ordering instructions soon.

Test Administration Services

HiSET Program Success

Congratulations to Nevada's Department of Education for their recognition by Gov. Brian Sandoval. Sandoval highlighted the ongoing effort to provide critical high school equivalency and alternative education opportunities that help to reduce unemployment and enhance Nevada's workforce. Nevada was the first state in the country to offer multiple options for high school equivalency assessments which are the basis for a Nevada High School Equivalency Certificate. For the full story, visit

HiSET Success Story — Billings, Montana

Battling drug use, Adam Munoz of Billings, Mont., decided to drop out of junior high school. Now sober, in his mid-20s and raising a family, Munoz is motivated to get a college education that will help him pursue a career. Read more about Munoz's success story and how passing the HiSET exam is helping him fulfill that goal.

Does your state have a HiSET success story you want to share with us and others? If so, we want to hear it. Email Sheri Mayo with details. Include "HiSET Success Story" in your subject line.

ETS HiSET Conference

Invitations have been sent for the first HiSET conference, which will include valuable information and resources for state administrators, educators, test center staff and corrections staff. Please note that space is limited and reserved on a first-come, first-served basis.



December 1–3, 2014


The Palazzo Las Vegas
3325 Las Vegas Blvd. South
Las Vegas, NV 89109

For questions about the conference, please send an email to and you will receive a response within 48 hours.

For more information about the HiSET program, contact us.

Phone toll-free:



Montana HSE Information

Conversion Scores:  Please delete.

The revised conversions from GED scores to HiSET scores have changed.  If you have been using a previously posted chart, please delete it.  The conversion is no longer applicable.

Click here for current HiSET practice test results chart.

Marianne Shomaker, Montana High School Equivalency (HSE) Specialist

Math and Language Arts Essay Information

Scheduled to be released in the coming weeks is a recorded Webinar to explain a new aspect of the math test. Another Webinar is going to be released on the 2015 essay portion of the language test.

Montana Examiners/ABLE Meeting:  HiSET Resources

Email Follow-up to Examiners: 

Click here   


Attached are the trifold templates from Jonna McDonough with the following explanation:

Our marketing team developed one black and white template and three color templates.  Of the three color templates, one does not have a front graphic, the other two have different graphics.  The funky text is simply a text place holder for custom text inserts by programs.


Click here to access HiSET Trifold Templates.

Research Memorandum – Recommending Passing Scores for the High School Equivalency Test: 

Click here to read about the recommended Passing Scores for HiSET. 


More information will be coming soon from ETS regarding the HiSET essay.

Montana HiSET Resources

Check out the shared resources on the HiSET Resource page at

Remember:  The resources below are teacher-designed resources that may be changed as teachers learn more by experience with HiSET and more vendor HiSET materials become available.

Have you created or found any resources that you are willing to share?  Please email them to MTLINCS.

HiSET Success:  Montana

Do you have a HiSET success story you want to share with us and others? If so, we want to hear it. Email Margaret Bowles with details. Include "HiSET Success Story" in your subject line.

2.   Montana ABLE Fall Conference and Career Pathways Initiative 2014

More Postings from Conference 2014!  Postings about Recruitment are now available.  Also check out the Faces of EQ 2014!

Click here on Montana ABLE Conference 2014 Resources to find the following resources:




Data:  Desk Audit



Faces of EQ 2014


  • ABLE Meeting


  • Examiners Meeting




Moving Pathways Forward

OPI Introductory Presentation


Materials from Great Falls


·        2014 AE Fall Brochure

·        2014 Fall Adult Ed Quick Reference Guide

·        2014 Quick Reference Flip

·        College Class Brochure

·        College Class Flyer

·        ESOL 2014 Fall Brochure

·        Postcard Schedule Fall 2014


·        2014 Fall Adult Ed Quick Reference Guide

·        2014 Fall Adult Ed Quick Reference Guide backside

·        Do You Need More Tools - HiSET

·        Faces of Adult Ed - Amy

·        Faces of Adult Ed - Gerard

·        Movie Ad Copy - Tagline for Radio

·        Movie Ad Final

·        Plugged In Radio

·        Talking Points - Elevator Speech


·        Blue Sheet Backside Computer Skills

·        Blue Sheet Pathway Checklist Fall 2014

·        Green Sheet Backside 2015 Orientation

·        Green Sheet TABE Cover Sheet 2015

·        Pink Sheet Backside Fall 2014 Class Schedule

·        Pink Sheet TABE Scores

·        Prezi Link Rebranding Adult Education Conference Script

Pathways Opportunities

·        Blue Sheet Backside Computer Skills Survey

·        Blue Sheet Pathway Checklist Fall 2014

·        CDL Class Info

·        CDL Permit Opportunity Flyer

·        CDL PreAssignment

·        CNA Opportunity Flyer Fall 2014

·        CNA PreAssignment October 2014 Letter from Sheila

·        Distance Learning Contract January 2014


Materials from Miles City

3.   Montana Instruction Ideas

Check out the Postings 1, 2, 6, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, and 13 below for ideas about instruction. 

4.   WIOA Update:  Montana ABLE Programs – Stay informed!

WIOA Montana Updates:

Click here  to access Montana WIOA:  Chunking Pertinent Information for Montana.

WIOA National Updates:

Click here  

U.S. Department of Education WIOA Reauthorization site

Transcripts of Videos

·         9/8/14 Video:  Session IV:  Title I - Performance Accountability System

o   Transcript:

·         9/2/14 Video:  Session III:  Title I - State Workforce Boards and Unified Plans

o   Transcript:

·         8/20/14Video:  Session II:  Overview of the Adult Education and Family Literacy Act (WIOA)

o   Transcript:

·         8/7/14Video:  Session I:  Overview of Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA)

o   Transcript:


The Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA): An Overview of Adult Education and Literacy Webinar. This webinar, featured on Aug. 28, provided a broad overview of the legislation, key dates for implementation, and useful information on resources and materials for adult education and literacy partners and stakeholders. The event also featured a panel of representatives from the Office of Special Education and Rehabilitative Services, the Department of Health and Human Services, and the Department of Labor. See the Presentation slides PDF] and Archived webinar.

National Information

5. Career Pathways:  Career Pathways Exchange

Taken from LINCS Notice

As a valued member of the LINCS community, you’re invited to subscribe to OCTAE’s new Career Pathways Exchange (the Exchange) to receive targeted email digests of the latest high-quality resources, events, and information related to career pathways.

With the passing of WIOA into law and the release of the Vice President’s Ready to Work: Job-Driven Training and American Opportunity report, the role of career pathways systems in improving our nation’s economy is more important than ever. Identified in the Ready to Work report as a way to help states and interested stakeholders to develop, expand, and strengthen their career pathways systems, the Exchange consolidates and distributes career pathways-related resources, events, and information from federal and state agencies and partner organizations. The Exchange streamlines information from multiple outlets to facilitate a deeper national dialogue on career pathways systems development and implementation.

Exchange subscribers can select to receive email digests on their topics of interest, including: Building Cross-Agency Partnerships, Identifying Industry Sectors and Engaging Employers, Designing Education and Training Programs, Identifying Funding Needs and Sources, Aligning Policies and Programs, and Measuring System Change and Performance.

For continued information on the go, be sure to find and follow the Exchange on Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest.

We look forward to sharing these timely and important resources and information with you. Don’t miss out; subscribe to this information service today!

The LINCS Community Team

6.  Disabilities

  Taken from LINCS Disabilities in Adult Education

Here are some positive snippets from postings at about working with “students who just don’t get it.”

Snippet #1

In a discussion thread initiated by Susan Finn, a blog by Rebecca Adler was discussed.  You can access it at:   In addition to scaffolding and differentiated instruction, there was something else in her blog that interested me.  It is certainly worth including here:

Scrambling in the moment to figure out what students need when they just don't get it is one of the exciting challenges of teaching. Being able to respond to learners' needs on the spot is hands down one of the greatest tricks of this trade. 

Rochelle Kenyon

Snippet #2

I do a lot of preparation for my classes, but when it comes to actual classtime, I find that a good portion of the "magic" is from improvisation. The thing that fascinates me is the way that five different people can look at the same thing and see it in five different ways. Planned exercises are the foundation of the class, but it's often the off-the-cuff remark, the follow-up question, or a student's mistake that ends up being an ah-ha! moment--sometimes for the student, and sometimes for me. My ah-ha! is when I see what the student is thinking and why his or her understanding is fuzzy, incorrect, or incomplete. Once I see that, I can go about helping the student reach the next level of understanding. I really think that this is the heart of teaching: being prepared enough that you can know when and how to depart from the plan. That's also a source of adreneline, which helps us teachers stay on our toes, ready for the next ah-ha!


7.  Health Literacy:  Resources

  Taken from LINCS Health Literacy

In honor of Health Literacy Month, I will highlight some resources throughout the month that may be helpful to adult literacy programs or teachers who want to learn more about health literacy or incorporate it into your curriculum.

This 7-page practitioner's guide is from the Goodling Institute for Research in Family Literacy and Penn State's College of Education.

Click here:  Addressing the Health Literacy Needs of Adult Education Students

8. Math:  Importance of Teaching Problem-solving with Students

Taken from LINCS Math and Numeracy 

Here is a blog that I thought might be an interesting read about. "Why Is Teaching Problem Solving Important to Student Learning?" This is a great illustration of reaching the deeper level of understanding without learners that we all strive for in our math classrooms.

Brooke Istas

 9. Reading: Comprehension – Reading Apprenticeship

Taken from LINCS Reading and Writing 

A new resource is available for supporting students to read complex texts:  The Reading Apprenticeship at WestEd at .

Here are a couple of snippets from the discussion about the above:

STAR and Complex Texts

I just wanted to respond to your comment briefly, to make the case for not "either/or" but "both/and."  I think the work of STAR and other evidence-based reading instruction practices are critical.  One cannot succeed with increasingly complex texts without a first grasp of the building blocks of reading, blocks that STAR lays beautifully.  I see these two reading 'packages' as very much working in tandem, focusing on improving reading from different angles, and I would be hesitant to give up one for the other.  STAR likely aligns more closely with the CCRS's "Foundational Skills" anchor standards, while Readers Apprenticeship works to meet other areas of the ELA standards.  Both have much to offer us and our students, I believe!


I guess by "alternative" I didn't mean either/or; however the skills-based approach advocated by STAR felt incomplete to me, so I began investigating other approaches.  I will say, though, that the evidence upon which STAR is based is surprisingly thin, and the the National Reading Panel report on which STAR largely bases its approach (teaching the four components) is also highly contested in the literacy research field, and even within the panel itself:  I do, though, find "modeling" very important as well as teaching vocabulary.  

John Schlueter

I have been using Reading Apprenticeship since 1999; I believe my colleagues and I at the City University of New York were the first ones to adapt it to use with adult education students.  It is still the most effective approach I know of to teach strategic literacy to adults.  Much better than the skills-in-a-box approach that is the basis of all the test-prep books, and unfortunately, still so prevalent in our field.  The skills approach purports to teach critical thinking, but it is just more of the same rote, decontextualized, stultifying stuff that causes students to drop out of our programs.  Reading Apprenticeship, on the other hand, really does help students learn how to be metacognitive and think deeply and critically. The strategies of questioning, clarifying, summarizing and predicting, as well as the think-alouds, have worked wonderfully with my students at various levels; and they are the strategies I teach adult educators to use with their students in my current work in Chicago.


I teach a multi-level reading and writing Adult Basic Education course and a Transitions to College class, so these students come into the class with various levels,  insecurities, language backgrounds,  and gaps in their formal education.  In 2008 I began to learn and implement the Reading Apprenticeship framework and routines in my classroom. This experience has been transformative.  Students, who approached learning in a disinterested way or who had a poor reader identity, became  engaged in the class, starting reading and discussing their texts, and making remarkable end-of-the quarter gains.


10. Science:  Project-based Learning in Science

Taken from LINCS Science

Project-based learning (PBL) has been around for a long time.  David Rosen has mentioned this teaching/learning technique in a recent discussion thread.

In my experience, it can be daunting to introduce project-based learning into the instructional setting.  It takes time to write a good project, to evaluate it, and to devise an appropriate assessment.   Fortunately, there are many examples of successful projects which are freely available for adaptation to adult education.   One leader in the field is CIESE, the Center the Center for Innovation in Engineering and Science Education.  For more than twenty years, in collaboration with Stevens Institute of Technology, CIESE has provided “multidisciplinary STEM curricula that educators throughout the world can use. These compelling lessons and projects promote problem-based learning, collaboration, higher order thinking skills, and critical analysis through the integration of science, technology, engineering, mathematics and other core subjects.”

CIESE sponsors materials and curricula for online collaborations across the United States, other countries and people in of all ages and educational levels.

Online Collaboration Curricula:

I'd like to encourage a small group of us to participate in one of these projects.  It would be a way for those of us who are new to project-based learning to get started, and for those experienced in PBL to increase expertise.  I suggest one that doesn't take a lot of time but is quite relevant to current issues on water availability, consumption patterns, drought, and climate changes.

 “Down the Drain:  How much water do you use?”

How much water does an individual use in a day, and how does that compare to usage by individuals in other parts of the world? 

The project is designed to answer these questions.  Participants measure their personal and household consumption, compile data, calculate measurements of mean/median, report data to the CIESE website, and compare personal usage to data from other parts of the world.  Lesson plans, templates, resources are all available.  CIESE sponsors the website at which the data are entered.  This is free; to post data, an instructor needs to register at the CIESE site.

How about it?  Are any of you interested in trying this out?  There are many school groups which are already participating in this project, which is on-going.  You can start on your own, but it might be great to do this together for purposes of discussion and evaluation.  Please take a look and indicate your interest (on this discussion thread) by October 24th.

Susan Cowles

11. Science:  Video

Taken from LINCS Science

If you only watch one science video this year, please make it this one:

David J. Rosen

12. Standards:  Shifts in College and Career Readiness

Taken from LINCS College and Career Standards

Do you having difficulty understand the shifts in the College and Career Readiness Standards for Adult Education?  If so, or if you need a review click here to go to engage NY for a good description of the twelve shifts in English Language Arts and Mathematics.  Scroll down the page and click on Common Core Shifts. 

Meryl Becker-Prezocki, SME

 13. Technology:  TED Talks

Taken from LINCS Technology 

TED talks relevant to adult basic skills teaching and learning are archived on the Adult Literacy Education (ALE) Wiki at

As this is a wiki, you can add in other links to relevant TED talks there, too. For easy-to-read and use directions go to the bottom of this page, . I will be adding new TED talks to this page today. I hope you will, too.

David J. Rosen

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