Greetings from Montana LINCS

 Having trouble with this email?  Click here for MTLINCS Email for 5/25/15.

Looking for past emails?

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

Montana Information

1. HiSET Blast

*Update on 5/23/15!!!*

Read below the Billings Gazette opinion article by Jeanine Pease which highlights HiSET.

·       New test offers pathway for Montanans to finish high school

HiSET® Program eUpdate | April 2015

Test Center Reimbursement

In an effort to be more eco-friendly and expedite payments, ETS is transitioning from paper checks to electronic payments. If your center or organization is currently reimbursed fees via check on a monthly basis, please either complete the Automated Clearing House paperwork that was enclosed with your monthly payment or contact Michele Gregov at


Used Answer Sheet Returns

Please be sure to return all used answer sheets, Supervisor's Irregularity Reports and Center Report Forms to:

Inbound Processing Center
200 Ludlow Drive
Ewing, NJ 08638

Return envelopes and testing materials should not be sent to Pam Cato via the 2014 Test Book Return Options in the UPS account.

Sending answer sheets and testing materials to the incorrect location can delay scoring and risks test security. 

For more information about the HiSET program, contact us.

Phone toll-free:



Montana HSE Update: May 2015­­­

Response by ETS to Montana Math Instructor Observations

Montana math instructors submitted questions to ETS about the new math HiSET test.

Click here to read ETS response.

Calculator Policy Rescinded:

ETS was asked to write a policy on the calculator by several states. As we have always stated, HiSET is calculator neutral and it makes no difference for the assessment if a scientific calculator is used or a four function calculator.  We can absolutely change the policy to scientific if that is desired. I believe it would be easier to use a scientific calculator in multi-vendor states since the other vendors use scientific.  

ETS does not allow test takers to bring their own calculator to testing.  This cannot be changed.  A four function calculator was written into the policy under the assumption it was preferred by the states and since that is what students have access to in the CBT version.  We also didn't want testing centers to have increased expense for purchasing scientific calculators.

Amy Riker, ETS HiSET National Executive Director

Estimate how well prepared you are for the HiSET exam:

HiSET Preparation Materials 2015

Montana HiSET Resources

Check out the shared resources on the HiSET Resource page at

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 Shoptalk

Click here to access Shoptalk Summary.

·       E-grants

·       EdReady

·       Comment Period for WIOA

·       Core Partner Updates

·       2015-16 Performance Targets

·       Assessment Policies Submitted for Approval

·       Career Pathways

·       MABLE Makeover

3. Montana ABLE Graduations

Once again, graduation is in the air for many programs.  Send any of your media coverage to MTLINCS.

Click here to access current graduation postings.

Billings Graduation

·       Billings Gazette:  'Determined' 32-year-old earns diploma while raising family

·       KTVQ:  Adult Education students celebrate graduation

4. Montana ABLE Spring 2015 Meeting Resources:  Directors' Meeting, ESL, and TABE:  April/May 2015

Click here to access multiple resources from Montana spring meetings: Directors’ Meeting, ESL, and TABE Training

TABE Materials now posted!

5. Montana and National News Information

Click here  to access a site that will take you to the most current information without your having to search.  More resources posted on 5/9/15.

6. Montana Instruction Ideas

Check out #10, #11, #12, #14 and #17.

7. Montana Moving Pathways Forward Resources

Click here to access all MPF Resources.

8. WIOA Update

5/25/15:  WIOA Comment Period Deadline - June 15

5/18/15:  Reminder from OCTAE - Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act Quick Start Action Planner:  One-Stop Center Service Design

The Department of Labor’s Employment and Training Administration recently released the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA) Quick Start Action Planner (QSAP), a new technical assistance tool for implementing the WIOA. According to its website, the QSAP “is an interactive, self-paced assessment tool designed to help leaders at all levels of the public workforce system plan for this transformation and prepare for implementation of WIOA.” The QSAP was designed to help entities identify the strengths and weaknesses in their workforce systems. It will also help connect workforce leaders to targeted resources to help them prepare and plan effectively for WIOA implementation.

The tool is intended for both local and state public workforce system leaders. Accessing and completing the QSAP and holding results discussions “will help states and local areas develop a common understanding of their readiness to implement WIOA and jointly develop a plan to address opportunities for action.”

For more information on the QSAP, public workforce leaders and other interested parties are encouraged to review the WIOA

5/9/15:  New Posting on WIOA Update Page

Integrated Education and Training:  An Overview of Pertinent WIOA Statutes and Federal Regulations

4/13/15:  WIOA Update:  Comment Period  DEADLINE JUNE 15

Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act— Five Notices of Proposed Rulemaking Available for Public Inspection:  Sixty Day Comment Period Begins April 16

Below are the Title I, Title II proposed regulations for WIOA along with the listing of the tables of contents for the two documents that highlight the key sections related to our adult education programs. This material was sent to State Directors of Adult Education last Friday. After April 16, 2016 The US Department of Education will be accepting comments on these rules.

Once the state directors have fully examined the proposed rules i will be issuing materials that will highlight the critical issues for our programs. I hope to have input from other states by our April meeting.


 ·        2015-05528 Title I proposed regs

·        NCSDAE WIOA Title I table of contents

·        2015-05540 Title II proposed regs

·        NCSDAE WIOA Title II table of contents

See more information below.

The AEFLA Title II NPRM is available online at  The other four NRPMs are posted on the Federal Register Public Inspection website at  

They will all be available for comment during a 60-day period beginning on April 16, 2015. 

Please visit for links to the NPRMs and additional resources and information. 

WIOA Montana Updates:

Click here  to access the following:

Montana WIOA:  Chunking Pertinent Information for Montana.

National Information

9. Career Pathways:  Partnership Case Studies

Taken from LINCS Career Pathways

As noted earlier this month, in April, the White House released President Obama’s Upskill Initiative.  I want to highlight two important questions from the report, and the underlying evidence that demonstrates their importance to the President's initiative. 

How can front line workers access training?

The prevalence of job-related training has fallen: Newly released analysis of survey data shows that the prevalence of training has fell between 1996 and 2008, the most recent year with data available. Over this period, the share of respondents ages 16 or older receiving any training in the past year fell from about 26 percent to 16 percent. 

Employer-provided training is the most important source of job-related training but has declined alongside all training: 16 percent of surveyed workers in 2008 reported receiving some kind of job-related training. For about three-quarters of those (12 percent of all workers), this training was employer-provided. By comparison, in 1996, 21 percent of workers reported receiving employer-provided training, with 13 percent of workers receiving this training on the job.

What are promising practices for supporting front-line worker advancement exist?

Expanding apprenticeships and other forms of on-the-job training that lead to better paying jobs: On-the-job training at most companies is a combination of formal and informal, instructor-led training, e-learning and on-the-job training, coaching, shadowing, video training, self-study, testing and visual assessments. Apprenticeships are the “gold standard” for on-the-job training – nine out of 10 apprentices are employed after completing their apprenticeship, with an average starting wage of over $50,000.

Increasing employer-provided education benefits that help employees work towards a degree while they are on-the-job: On average, organizations spend $16.5 billion per year on education benefits that allow current workers to continue their education and earn a degree or credential while working or to go back to school. Further, education increases the likelihood that an employee will be promoted or given new opportunities, earn higher wages, demonstrate improved performance, and seek additional responsibilities.

The report goes on to provide 12 case studies examples of how businesses, labor groups, higher education and human services organizations are working together to develop and support upskilling initiatives.   Below are the 12 case studies, listed by partnership. 

·        The ASCEND Program for Gap Inc. Workers

·        Blue Cross Blue Shield South Carolina and Apprenticeship Carolina

·        National Institute for Metalworking Skills

·        College for America and Partners Healthcare

·        Pepsico: Modernizing Tuition Assistance Programs

·        Pine Technical and Community College Employer Partnership

·        Xerox Global Learning Innovation

·        Thomas Edison State College and United Parcel Service (UPS) Learning

·        Goodwill Industries and Anne Arundel Community College

·        Trade Adjustment Assistance Community College and Career Training Program at Sinclair Community College

·        Finishing Trades Institute

·        Kaiser Permanente's labor management trust funds

Mike Cruse

10. ESL Webinar on May 29:  Adult Educators Collaborate to Build Bridges and Empower Learners in Classrooms and Communities

Taken from LINCS Adult English Language Learners

Welcoming America and World Education, Inc. invite adult educators to join an exciting opportunity to review and shape an adult education toolkit designed to foster inclusive communities, celebrate the contributions of New Americans, and build cross-community interaction. In celebration of National Welcoming Week, we have prepared a variety of classroom activities that build communicative skills as they also bring together diverse communities to learn about each other’s lives and experiences.

In this webinar, we invite our colleagues to review the materials and collaborate with us to make sure that the toolkit is full of tools that will engage your students and open avenues for communication, understanding, and celebration. Bring your ideas and creativity! Your ideas will help shape a national toolkit that helps students in ESOL and ABE classrooms to connect and celebrate with their communities during National Welcoming Week 2015.  All participants will receive a copy of the toolkit.

Date: Friday, May 29, 2015 at 1 pm EST

Register Now! 

Featured presenters:

Andy Nash, World Education

Heather, Ritchie, ESOL Trainer and Instructor

Rachel Peric, Welcoming America

11. Instruction:  5 Keys to Comprehensive Assessment: #4 Performance-based Assessment

Taken from LINCS Assessment

Key #4 in the five keys to comprehensive assessment presented by Stanford University Professor Linda Darling-Hammond is "Performance Assessment." Performance assessment can take many forms, but the goal is that the performance task is something that is modeled after real life experiences. So students might develop a portfolio of their work; they might collaborate on a research project and present it to a group of evaluators and be expected to defend their project.

Darling-Hammond notes that performance assessments engage students in collaboration, communication, critical thinking and problem solving, which artfully blend both cognitive and non cognitive skills. In my view -and in my experience, this type of assessment can be highly motivating for the adults in our classrooms.

Susan Finn Miller

12. Instruction:  Study Skills Resource

Taken from LINCS Reading and Writing

Study Guides and Strategies makes study skills strategies available in 35+ languages for students with fairly strong reading skills in their native language.

Cynthia Zaft

13. Instruction Webinar on May 28:  Open Educational Resources for the Classroom

Taken from LINCS Notice

Event Title: Open Educational Resources: Working Together to Evaluate and Promote High Quality Resources in the Classroom

Event Type: Online Discussion in the LINCS Community and Webinar

Webinar: May 28, 2015 (1:30 p.m. – 3:00 p.m. ET) / Register for the webinar


Do you use product reviews and customer feedback for items you’re interested in or need to purchase?  Do they help you make a decision?  What if you could do the same thing with teaching and learning materials for adults; how effective would it be?

LINCS is excited to announce an upcoming event:Open Educational Resources: Working Together to Evaluate and Promote High Quality Resources in the Classroom

On May 28, 2015, special guests Dahlia Shaewitz, Dr. Tara Myers, and Amanda Duffy from the American Institutes for Research (AIR) will host an informative webinar to discuss the value of evaluating open educational resources (OER) in support of work in adult education. The US Department of Education defines OER as: “… teaching, learning, and research resources that reside in the public domain or have been released under an intellectual property license that permits sharing, accessing, repurposing—including for commercial purposes—and collaborating with others” (See NETP, 2010, p 56). The webinar will highlight OER Commons, a searchable online database of OER, and how to tag OER for adult education, add comments, and join the OER Commons public group of adult educators.

A week prior to this webinar, from May 18-22, 2015, the AIR team invites you to share your thoughts and experiences in the Science, Math, and Evidence-based Professional Development groups. Subject matter experts will engage in week-long Q&A on the evaluation of OER, the effectiveness of quality OER for adult learners, and usefulness of the OER Commons website.

Please save the date for this expert-led event. You can learn more about OCTAE’s Open Educational Resources to Enhance STEM Teaching and Learning in Adult Education (OER STEM) project at the project page on LINCS:

The LINCS Community Team

14. Updating LINCS User Profile

Taken from LINCS Notice

In support of your efforts to update or complete your LINCS user profile, our colleague, Brooke Istas, has created a short video to take you through the steps to complete your profile.  You can view the video here

Your profile is an important part of your identity on LINCS.  It is how others get to know you, and your experience in the field.  It is also how you can share with the community your current role, and where you are heading with your programs. 

I encourage you to take some time to watch the video, and see how easy it is to complete your profile.  If you are still experiencing any problem getting your profile online, please let me know, and I'll be happy to personally walk you through it.

Mike Cruse

15. Reading Webinar on May 29:  Cognitive and Motivational Processes that Contribute or Impede Reading

Taken from LINCS Notice

Center for the Study of Adult Literacy

Free Webinar Event: Friday, May 29, 2015, 2:00 - 3:00 PM EST

In September of 2012, the U.S. Department of Education’s Institute of Education Sciences (IES) awarded funding for a five-year research center for adult literacy. This center is dedicated to studying adults who read between the third and eighth grade levels.  We invite you to join us as we share an update on our activities.

During this webinar we will discuss our exploration of underlying cognitive and motivational processes that contribute to or impede reading development, and our development of a multi-component instructional program to help learners improve their reading and comprehension skills.

This national webinar will be held on Friday, May 29th from 2:00-3:00 Eastern Time.

Please register at:

Registration is limited! (If clicking on the above link does not work, copy/paste the URL into your browser)


Principal Investigator:

Daphne Greenberg, Ph.D., Professor, Georgia State University, Department of Educational Psychology, Communication Disorders, and Special Education

Co-Principal Investigators:

Maureen W. Lovett, Ph.D., Professor of Pediatrics, University of Toronto, and Senior Scientist, The Hospital for Sick Children Art Graesser, Ph.D., Professor, The University of Memphis, Department of Psychology and the  Institute for Intelligent Systems

Questions? Please contact Edison Wolf at:

16. Technology Article:  Why Technology Will Never Fix Education

Taken from LINCS Post-secondary Completion

Why Technology Will Never Fix Education

Click here to read responses to article.

Response #1

I found Kentaro Toyama's article stimulating. I agreed with much of what he argued, but he missed something extremely important. I'll try to explain.

Years ago, author Ivan Illich, in Deschooling Society, made a clear distinction between learning and schooling. We often think of education as including both, but unfortunately, and as Illich argued, sometimes schooling is in conflict with learning. Although Illich would have had us throw out formal education altogether because, as he put it, our society is "all schooled up",  I would not argue for that, but I do think in all teaching and learning educators need to be clear about what is learning to meet society's requirements, i.e. schooling, and what is learning for other reasons such as curiosity, need for information to solve a problem one cares about, pride of knowledge, and others. Teaching usually takes place in formal learning environments, schools, but learning (non-formal, informal learning) may not. Or, as Mark Twain once put it, "My whole life was an education, except of course for the years in school," Toyama's article in the Chronicle of Higher Education, not surprisingly, takes as a given the importance  of learning to meet requirements, i.e. formal schooling, but ignores other, sometimes equally or more important powerful motivations for learning.

I wonder, Brooke, if the "few motivated learners who love the technology part of your courses" are strongly -- but at least for this part of the course -- differently motivated. I have seen adult learners, on their own, spend limitless hours learning how to solve technology-related problems because of the satisfaction, skills, and power they gain. They are strongly motivated, not for meeting external requirements, but for meeting personally-driven -- or job-related or professional -- needs. Toyama misses this dimension of learning almost entirely. For example, in describing people who succeed at completing MOOCS, he only mentions the factors of privilege, gender and level of education (he's right about those) but fails to note the importance of powerful, non school-related motivation, some of which is personal, and some professional. Most people who have completed graduate level MOOCs, according to the research I have read, do so because of their engagement in the content (deep curiosity) and/or the work-related skills and knowledge they feel they need or could benefit from.

Our challenge in adult basic education is to achieve a balance between students' very real needs and motivation to meet requirements for credentials (the HSE, for example), and to nurture their other motivations to learn. For some students, especially younger ones, starting with the digital tools they use and love -- social media, smart phone apps, and games -- may be a way to restore some balance between schooling and learning. Well-designed learning games and simulations, for example for language learners, and perhaps in other realms of learning, may be another kind of technology that can help to achieve this balance. The current National Education Technology Plan, that incidentally tries to some extent to include adult basic skills, emphasizes what some call "web 2.0" skills, what others call skills acquired through project-based or constructivist learning. The phrase "maker activities" has crept into some education circles, especially in K-12 and higher ed, as a way to name this kind of learning. The concept is not new, and was especially well articulated by American philosopher educator, John Dewey, in several of his works as "learning by doing". Technology offers some great opportunities for project-based or constructivist learning, for learners who want to make things, solve problems in the process, and acquire useful new skills and knowledge, for learning by doing.

David J. Rosen

17. Technology:  Evaluating Open Educational Resources (OER)

Taken from LINCS Technology

I just uploaded my powerpoint … (on OER) and list of links for my presentation.   I also saved them to my Google Drive and if anybody wants a peek they're here

Sue Jones

18. Technology:  How to Keep Up with New Resources - Symbaloo

Taken from LINCS Technology

A group of us were talking at lunch about how impossible it is to keep up with all the new sites, apps, tools, etc. that become available.  It can also be overwhelming to provide a list to students, not to mention the chances of them entering a URL incorrectly or losing the exact page on a link that you want them to go to.

One way that I have worked with students that seems to help with that is SYMBALOO (particularly, 

I can create "mixes" of resources for students to review.  I can also "borrow" mixes from other educators.  Here's an example of a "directory" mix:

And here is one with a lot of different resources for a multi-level class:

It has a "social media" component, which is great.  As I said, you can borrow the mixes from other teachers rather than recreate the wheel.


Here is another resource discussing Symbaloo.

19. Technology Webinar on May 28:  Older Americans and Digital Literacy

Taken from LINCS Notice

What: Webinar for Older Americans Month

Date:  May 28, 2015

Time: 1:00 PM – 2:30 PM EDT

Location: Online Event

In honor of Older Americans Month, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) is launching the first in a series of webinars with several key partners to help address digital literacy and broadband adoption issues affecting seniors.  Presenters include representatives from the Departments of Education, and Housing and Urban Development (HUD); the National Telecommunications Information Administration, the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS), and EveryoneOn.

This 90-minute program will provide an overview of the FCC’s Lifeline program and other resources for low-income seniors including those living in HUD-assisted properties to obtain low-cost broadband in their homes.  Several online resources will be discussed to help plan and deliver high-quality learning experiences to adults and seniors, including freely available professional development courses and communities of practice for facilitators., an online portal to help users learn technology and Internet skills, will be highlighted with an emphasis on life-long learning and free digital literacy training for Older Americans.  Case study information will also be shared including a presentation about the Alele Museum & Public Library in the Marshall Islands where youth are teaching retirees through a senior digital literacy project funded by the IMLS Grants to States program.  The program will conclude with a dialogue about future webinars.

This webinar is open to the public at no cost.  Pre-registration is strongly encouraged, but not required.  Closed captioning will be provided, and the webinar will be recorded for future use. 

To register and join this online event:

Go to

At the Event Information page click on Register

At the Register for event page provide the required information and click on Submit 

Once registered you will receive a confirmation email message containing instructions for joining the event, the password and the link for the meeting.

For more information about Older Americans Month please visit

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