Greetings from Montana LINCS

 Having trouble with this email?  Click here for MTLINCS Email for 9/7/15.

Looking for past emails?

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

Montana Information

WIOA Kickoff Follow-up:  9/7/15

All of the presentations (apprenticeship coming soon) are on the regular DLI website .  They are under Data and Publications

1. HiSET Blast

Summary of Updates

·       2016 HiSET Program Manual:  NEW

·       2016 Test at a Glance:  NEW

·       2016 Sample Questions:  NEW

·       2016 Scored Sample Writing Responses:  NEW

·       2016 Writing Response Scoring Guide:  NEW


HiSET® Program eUpdate | August 2015

Practice Tests

The HiSET® Program is pleased to announce the release of the new practice tests! The Free Practice Tests, eBooks and Official Practice Test in Language Arts — Writing, Language Arts — Reading, Mathematics, Science and Social Studies have been updated to prepare test takers for the 2016 HiSET exam. The new releases include evidence-based writing prompts, a set of a paired passages and new mathematics items. For a breakdown of the updates and how to purchase the new practice tests, please see the Quick Reference Guide (PDF).

Program Manual

The 2016 HiSET Program Manual (PDF) will be available on our Download Library on September 1, 2015. This new edition contains updates to the directions for test administration, annual test book returns and other program updates.

Preparation Documents

The 2015 Test at a Glance (TAAG) (PDF) has been updated to include more details and a new section on the College and Career Readiness Standards for the Mathematics section. This updated PDF is available on our Download Library.

The 2016 Test at a Glance (TAAG) (PDF) will be released and available on our Download Library on September 1, 2015. The new 2016 TAAG (PDF) will have College and Career Readiness Standards for Reading, Writing and Mathematics. All subtest areas have been updated to include approximate percentages and new content areas.

Writing Section

The Scored Sample Writing Response and Writing Response Scoring Guide (Rubrics) have been updated to include a new evidence-based writing prompt, a new writing sample and a new rubric and will be available on our Download Library on September 1, 2015. You can access both the Scored Sample Writing Response and Writing Response Scoring Guide (Rubrics) on our Download Library.

Sample Items

New sample items for all subtests with Depth of Knowledge levels will also be available on September 1, 2015. You can access these new sample items on our Download Library.

Expired Vouchers Policy

Organizations or individuals that have purchased vouchers have up to six months from the date of expiration to notify us that they would like to be issued new voucher numbers for those vouchers that have not been redeemed. After six months from the expiration date, the voucher will be removed and unavailable for further use. Please contact us at so we can assist you with this process.

Registering Test Takers — Important Reminder

When registering test takers, please click the submit button only ONCE. Double-clicking creates duplicate batteries and appointments in our systems.

Save the Date — ETS HiSET Conference


November 30–December 2, 2015


Sheraton New Orleans Hotel
500 Canal Street
New Orleans, LA 70130

Registration is limited and will be on a first-come, first-served basis. Registration information will be available soon.

HiSET Success Stories

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

For more information about the HiSET program, contact us.

Phone toll-free:


Montana HSE Update: August 2015­­­

Update:  8/31/15

HiSET 2015 Information Brief - Math

As many Math teachers requested, we have enhanced the Math information with a great deal of detail.  Teachers may expect a similar level of detail in our 2016 Informational Brief for all subtests.  This particular update was developed in response to feedback received from Math teachers across all HiSET states and territories.

Click here for the brief.


HiSET Test at a Glance Update

Greetings HiSET States & Territories-

Just a quick update on revisions to our Test At A Glance (TAAG) document.

We will be making modifications to the HiSET TAAG, specifically to provide additional information in Math. This update will be released the week of August 10th.

Also, as a reminder the 2016 TAAG will be released on September 1st. Please let us know if you have any questions.

Jason A. Carter, National Director, High School Equivalency Testing (HiSET®)|Educational Testing Service


Save the Date! 

2015 HiSET Conference

November 30 to December 2

New Orleans

Registration and Exhibit information available soon!


As you know, we are continuing our efforts to improve processes and ensure test integrity through the practice of regular, random test center audits. These audits are meant to ensure consistency in the processes followed to deliver the HiSET nationally, and are in no way an attempt to impede testing or to get centers “in trouble”. Our efforts are related directly to best practices, and we hope that this process continues to create an environment where centers can grow and learn and improve processes, as well as offering an opportunity to find centers that exemplify what we consider stellar center management. We are sending out the reminder to test centers below this week, as we’ve had a handful of centers surprised by their audits, and want to remind everyone that these audits are standard, customary practice and in no way should impact their day to day operations of delivering tests.

As part of our ongoing commitment to quality and consistency in the delivery of the HiSET exam, a test center observer may visit your center the day of the test or the week preceding it. You should check the observer’s identification and letter of authorization from ETS Office of Testing Integrity. If you are still in doubt about the identity of the auditor, you should call the number on the letter to verify the visit. Test center observations are scheduled to ensure that procedures and facilities meet test center standards. The observer will want to monitor as many aspects of the administration as possible, particularly test security arrangements and procedures, testing environment conditions and any evidence of recent changes in program policies, procedures, or requirements. It is requested you provide full cooperation to the observer, however, an observer should not in any way impede you or your staff in the execution of the test administration. These audits will be unannounced and are random and ongoing throughout the testing year in all of our HiSET jurisdictions. You can always contact Test Administration Services at 1-800-257-5123 for additional questions or information regarding test center audits.

Please feel free to reach out to me if you have any questions or concerns.

Amy E. Briggs

Director of Product Management

ETS High School Equivalency Test (HiSET)



HiSET Accommodations Overview for 2014


Estimate how well prepared you are for the HiSET exam:

Are You Ready to Take 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 Moving Pathways Forward Resources

Click here to access all MPF Resources. 

3. 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 8/24/15.

4. Montana Program and Student Highlights

Former Billings Adult Education student, Laura Sorenson, has been recognized in Women in Business 2015 as one of twenty exceptional women in the Billings community.  Click here.

5. TABE:  Participate in the TABE 11 & 12 Field Test Review

Data Recognition Corporation | CTB will be field testing new test items for the development of new TABE® forms. To achieve this goal, we need your help. We invite your program to join in this national field test review. You will have the opportunity to view and respond to test items that may appear on the new TABE 11&12.

Programs electing to participate will benefit in several different ways. First, they will contribute to improving the quality and development of the adult assessments they already use to effectively assess the skills and knowledge of adult learners. Second, they will gain familiarity in experiencing the new TABE forms. And finally, as a thank you for participating, both your program and students will receive monetary compensation.

Learn More 
For additional information on participating in the TABE 11&12 national field test, please fill out this brief survey. After you fill out the survey we will keep your information on file and will contact you when we are ready to begin the field test.

To access the survey, click
here »

For questions about prequalification for the field test study please contact:

Mike Johnson
National Adult Education Manager
Data Recognition Corporation | CTB

6. WIOA Update

9/7/15:  WIOA Kickoff Followup

Presentations posted on DLI website under Data and Publications.

8/24/15:  WIOA Vision Document from US Department of Education

  OCTAE Program Memorandum (OCTAE/DAEL 15-4) : Vision for the Adult Education and Family Literacy Act in the Workforce System and Initial Implementation of the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act; and

·        OSERS Technical Assistance Circular (RSA-TAC-15-02):  Vision for the State Rehabilitation Services Program as a Partner in the Workforce Development System under the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act.Back to Top.

8/13/15:  WIOA Vision for One Stop Delivery System

8/10/15:  Montana WIOA Kickoff Follow-up Coming Soon

WIOA Montana Updates:

Click here  to access the following:

Montana WIOA:  Chunking Pertinent Information for Montana.

National Information

7.  Career Pathways:  Personal Goals and Connecting to Career Pathways

Taken from LINCS Career Pathways

S.M.A.R.T. goals have come to be widely used in both for and non-profit organizations, as well as the classroom.  Doran's original definition tied in five criteria:

·        Specific: target a specific area for improvement.

·        Measurable: quantify, or at least suggest, an indicator of progress.

·        Assignable: specify who will do it.

·        Realistic: state what results can realistically be achieved given available resources.

·        Time-related: specify when the result can be achieved.

The words have changed over time, often based on the type of organization using them - academic versus business/professional. In some cases, it has expanded to included additional criteria.  For example, S.M.A.R.T.E.R. includes two additional criteria:

·        Evaluated: appraisal of a goal to assess the extent to which it has been achieved.

·        Reviewed: reflection and adjustment of your approach or behavior to reach a goal.

… I also want to share two resources used for SMART Goal setting in Career Pathways.  These are both available as part of the Career Exploration and Student Success Toolkit from the Health Professions Pathways (H2P) Project.  The first resource is a completed SMART Goal example for finding a jobThe second resource is a SMART Goal setting templatewhich can be used for academic or career-related goals. 

Michael Cruse

8. Technology:  Literacy List

Taken from LINCS Technology and Learning

For many years, with the help of adult basic skills teachers (including ESOL/ESL, numeracy and math, Adult Secondary Education, transition to higher education) and administrators, I have published The Literacy List, a free online resource for our field. At this point, The Literacy List is a very large collection of free Adult Basic and Secondary Education and English language (ELL/ESL/ESOL) websites, electronic discussion lists, communities of practice (CoPs), and other Internet resources for adult basic skills learners, teachers and tutors.

I have recently updated The Literacy List,  and today I have moved it to a new location . Within a few days, this new link to the Literacy List will be updated (under Publications) on my website, For now -- and also in the future -- you can go to the Literacy List directly with this link:

David Rosen

9. Technology:  Open Educational Resources Discussion – Continued from 8/31

Taken from LINCS Notice

What are OER?

“Open educational resources (OER) are 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.”

What’s the difference between an open resource and a free resource?

Free is great.  Open is great.  The difference between the two is the legal permissions attached to OER that allow for modification, unlimited sharing, unlimited access, and modification. (Yes! I mention modification twice. J It’s that important.)

Free resources are valuable, and we are not suggesting that you do not use them.  We are encouraging you to learn about, use, and even create OER in addition to the other resources you already use.  Determining if a resource is an OER or not can be tricky if you don’t have much experience doing so.  Understanding the legal terminology can be time consuming and confusing; however, once you know what to look for, it becomes much faster.  The greatest value in resources that are open is that open resources allow users to remix and revise the content legally and then share that revision with the rest of the open community.  This provides the opportunity for users to take a great resource and modify it to match their students’ needs and instructional objectives, as well as add to the supply of instructional materials – for us, it’s adding to the less robust pool of adult focused materials.   

Snippet #1

One of my favorite resources was a lesson on setting goals  The lesson starts with a Russian advertising video for shampoo. The video is actually really inspiring as it is about a girl who succeeds against all odds.  I just went of OER Commons and found this link

Paula DaSilva-Micheline

I can imagine that the video, You've got to have a dream, would be a good one to start a discussion of goal setting at the beginning of a new class. I like that the video has no audio, but rather communicates completely in the images.

Susan Finnmiller

Snippet #2

Below is a short list of OER outside of OER Commons.  As you explore some of these resources, it's important to keep in mind that because of the license permissions attached to them, they can be modified!

College and Career Readiness:

Achieve the Core 


All Subjects 

Learn NC

Adult Education Computer Curriculum

Saint Paul Community Literacy Consortium 

Digital Literacy

Digital Learn 

Open Textbooks and Courses

Open Course Library 

OE Consortium

Finally, here are two videos about open education and OER.  

TEDexNYED – David Wiley’s TED Talk on openness in education -

Why Open Education Matters

Paula DaSilva-Micheline

10. WIOA:  Clasp – Opportunities for Action

Taken from LINCS Career Pathways

The Center for Law and Social Policy (CLASP)  has released a memo with recommendations for state and local agencies to realize WIOA's goals of "helping low-income and lower-skilled youth and adults achieve academic success".

CLASP's Opportunities for Action - Career Pathways: State Plan & Policy takes a look at WIOA's requirement for local workforce boards to convene with educational partners and develop career pathways, that are aligned with Section 3(7)'s definition of core activities required for career pathways programs.

This resource provides an appendix of key WIOA definitions, suggestions on policies to support collaborative leadership, linkages to a Career Pathway Funding Toolkit, and a sample template for career pathways programs to articulate their learner population, job sector needs, and stackable credentials.

11. WIOA:  Request for Comments on WIOA Unified and Combined State Plan Requirements 

Taken from LINCS Notice

The Departments of Labor, Education, Health and Human Services, Agriculture, and Housing and Urban Development are soliciting comments concerning a collection of data that will be used for unified and combined state plans under the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA).  The WIOA Unified and Combined State Plan Requirements is a consolidated information collection that would implement sections 102 and 103 of WIOA (P.L. 113-128). WIOA requires that, no later than March 3, 2016, each State, at a minimum, submit a Unified State Plan as a condition of receiving funds for core programs subject to the Unified State Plan requirements. In the alternative, States may submit a Combined State Plan as a condition of receiving funds under certain named programs subject to the Combined State Plan provisions. See 29 U.S.C. §§ 3112 and 3113The Unified or Combined State Plan requirements are designed to improve service integration and ensure that the publicly-funded workforce system provides a range of employment, education, training, and related services and supports to help all jobseekers secure good jobs while providing businesses with the skilled workers they need to compete in the global economy.  To that end, the Unified or Combined State Plan would describe how the State will develop and implement a unified, integrated service delivery system rather than discuss the State’s approach to operating each program individually.

A copy of the proposed Information Collection Request with applicable supporting documentation may be accessed at by selecting Docket ID number ETA-2015-0006 or directly at!documentDetail;D=ETA-2015-0006-0002The comment period is open for 60 days and closes on October 5, 2015.  Any comments not received through the processes outlined in the Federal Register will not be considered by the departments.  Technical assistance materials will be available at

Norene Peterson

Adult Education Center

415 N. 30th Billings, MT 59101