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March 2008

This newsletter is published quarterly by the Center for Adult English Acquisition (CAELA) Network at the Center for Applied Linguistics and is offered free of charge. If you have information that you would like us to consider including in the next issue of the newsletter, please contact the editor at by May 4, 2008. The newsletter is written for all practitioners who work with adults learning English.

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This publication was prepared with funding from the U.S. Department of Education, Office of Vocational and Adult Education, under contract no. ED-07-CO-0084.

The opinions expressed herein do not necessarily reflect the opinions or policies of the U.S. Department of Education (ED).

CAELA Network Technical Work Group Meeting Held
New Materials for Those Working with Adult English Language Learners
Upcoming Conferences
Publications on Immigration in the United States

CAELA Network Technical Work Group Meeting Held

The work of the CAELA Network is guided by experts in the education of adults learning English as a second language and in the professional development of adult education practitioners working with this population. These experts make up the CAELA Network Work Group (TWG). The first meeting of the CAELA Network TWG was held on January 24 and 25, 2008, at the Center for Applied Linguistics. In addition to the TWG members, CAELA Network staff members Miriam Burt, Joy Peyton, Kirsten Schaetzel, Lynda Terrill, Sharon McKay, and Sarah Young attended, as did OVAE staff Chris Coro and Lynn Spencer.

The CAELA Network TWG is comprised of the following persons.

Professional Development Experts
Carla DeBose: Ms. DeBose has spent the majority of her career as a corporate trainer, one-on-one coach, and mentor. As Director of Instructional Services in the Office of Adult Literacy for the state of Georgia, Ms. DeBose leads the Georgia Department of Training and Adult Education Instructional Services Team, which provides technical assistance, professional development, ESL and EL Civics support, and overall program improvement support to the 37 technical colleges and 7 funded community-based organizations in the state.

Maria Koonce: Dr. Koonce has recently retired from Broward County Schools, Florida after more than thirty years as an educator. In the last twenty years, she held the position of Coordinator of Adult ESOL. Her major responsibilities included teacher training, classroom demonstrations, and coaching/mentoring. She has also been an Adjunct Professor with Florida Atlantic University, Nova Southeastern University, and Barry University delivering courses, particularly in all the areas of ESOL Endorsement and Foreign Language methodologies for education majors.

Program Administrators
Sue Barauski: Ms. Barauski has worked in ESOL, refugee and immigrant services, and adult education for over 25 years; 20 of those years as administrator of a state professional development agency, the Adult Learning Resource Center. She has coordinated numerous projects that involved collaborative partnering and is the director of a project to develop an online learning course for teachers focused on EL Civics instruction (EL/Civics Online).

Brigitte Marshall: Ms. Marshall gained recognition for her work integrating workplace skills into language instruction for employment preparation programs. As principal of the adult school in Oakland, Ms. Marshall trains and supervises over 400 ESL teachers. Prior to becoming principal, Ms. Marshall worked as adult ESL specialist for the state of California and as a consultant in refugee education.

Researchers in English Language and Literacy Development
Martha Bigelow: Dr. Bigelow is an Associate Professor in the Second Languages and Cultures Program in the Department of Curriculum and Instruction at the University of Minnesota. She has 13 years of ESL/EFL classroom experience teaching adult students in adult basic education, community colleges, and university settings. She has studied how English language learners (ages 16-28) with low print literacy make use of oral feedback, and has examined the strengths and challenges that older students with limited formal schooling and low literacy bring to oral language development in English.

JoAnn (Jodi) Crandall: Dr. Crandall is Professor of Education and Director of the doctoral program in Language, Literacy, and Culture at the University of Maryland and has worked in many areas of adult ESL including teaching, research, curriculum development, program evaluation, standards development, and teacher training. She was co-principal investigator on a project for the Council for the Advancement of Adult Literacy (CAAL) and is co-author (with Forrest Chisman) of the report of that project, Passing the Torch, which identifies models of effective transitions for adult English language learners to academic or vocational education.

Heide Spruck Wrigley: Dr. Wrigley is Senior Researcher for Language, Literacy, and Learning with LiteracyWork International, a small, independent social science research firm focused on education and training for youth and adults. Her work spans policy, research, and practice with a special focus on immigrant education, training, and citizenship. She is a senior fellow with the National Center on Immigrant Integration Policy of the Migration Policy Institute (MPI), an independent think tank in Washington, DC.

The purpose of this TWG meeting was to solicit these experts’ feedback on how the CAELA Network can best help states build their capacity to serve adult immigrants in instructional programs by providing effective professional development for practitioners working in this field. TWG members provided feedback on the following activities and products for the CAELA Network:

--Framework for Quality Professional Development – available later in 2008

--CAELA Network Web site – available now at

--Online and print resources – to be developed between now and October 2010

--Application and selection process for the 12 states that will become part of the CAELA Network. This process will be carried out in April and May 2008.

The next CAELA Network TWG meeting will be held October 16-17, 2008.

For updates on CAELA Network activities, including – in April – information about the application process for becoming a CAELA state, visit the Web site at

New Materials for Practitioners and Professional Developers Working With Adult English Language Learners

Adult ESL Teacher Credentialing and Certification
JoAnn (Jodi) Crandall, University of Maryland Baltimore County
Genesis Ingersoll, and Jacqueline Lopez,
Center for Adult English Language Acquisition (CAELA)

What are the certification, credentialing, and other requirements for adult ESL teachers in the 50 states and the District of Columbia? To answer this question, the authors of this brief collected information through telephone conversations with a range of individuals involved in adult education in the states. This brief describes efforts to professionalize the workforce of adult ESL educators through certification and credentialing, discusses the qualification requirements for adult ESL teachers in the 50 states and the District of Columbia, and makes recommendations on steps for states to take to professionalize the field.
Download the brief at
Download the state credentialing chart here.

Effects of Instructional Hours and Intensity of Instruction on NRS Level Gain in Listening and Speaking.
Sarah Young, Center for Applied Linguistics (CAL)

This brief reports on a descriptive study examining the relationship between student performance on BEST Plus and NRS level gain and class attendance. BEST Plus pretest and posttest data for nearly 7,000 examinees in two states were analyzed to see how their performance at each National Reporting System (NRS) Educational Functioning Level varied according to number of instructional hours and intensity of instruction. Results showed that across all NRS levels, the greater the number of instructional hours, the higher the percentage of students who made an NRS level gain. There was also a general trend toward greater NRS level gain for students with high levels of instructional intensity than for those with low instructional intensity. Intensity of instruction had the greatest impact on students at the Beginning ESL Literacy, Low Intermediate ESL, and Advanced ESL levels.
Download the digest at

Other Online Resources from CAL

CAL is a private, nonprofit organization working to improve communication through better understanding of language and culture. CAL’s Web site ( provides a wealth of information on and access to many free resources. The following links may be of particular interest to those working with adult English language learners:

Adult English Language Learners: -- Resources include briefs on a wide range of topics in adult ESL education and research.

Literacy Education: -- Resources include the report from the National Literacy Panel and a report on adolescents learning English as a second language.

Refugee Integration: -- Resources include information about refugee populations coming to the United States.

CAL -- Read about additional resources for those working with adult English language learners. The February 2008 issue discusses the CAELA Network, BEST Literacy score interpretation, the new EL Civics Online course for teachers, and the English for Heritage Language Speakers program. Download this issue at

Upcoming Conferences

The following conferences may be of interest to practitioners working with adult English language learners:

March 2008
March 30-April 1, 2008
National Conference on Family Literacy
Literacy Grows Families and Communities
Louisville, Kentucky

April 2008
April 2-5, 2008
The 42nd Annual TESOL Convention & Exhibit
Worlds of TESOL: Building Communities of Practice, Inquiry, and Creativity
New York, New York

April 28-May 1, 2008
COABE Annual Conference
St. Louis, Missouri

May 2008
May 4-8, 2008
The 53rd IRA Annual Convention
Engaging Learners in Literacy
Atlanta, Georgia

October 2008
October 1-4, 2008
ProLiteracy Worldwide Annual Conference
Little Rock, Arkansas

Publications on Immigration in the United States

Two new reports provide facts and figures on immigrants in the United States now and in the future.

U.S. Population Projections: 2005-2050
The population in the United States is expected to rise from 296 million in 2005 to 438 million in 2050; 82% of this increase will be due to immigration. This report from the Pew Hispanic Center describes what the U.S. population will look like in 2050.
Download the report at

Frequently Requested Statistic on Immigrants in the United States
Aaron Terrazas, Jeanne Batalovna, and Velma Fan
Who are the immigrants in the United States? Where do they come from? Where are they settling? What jobs do they have? What are their educational backgrounds? These and other questions are answered in this Spotlight article from the Migration Policy Institute.
Download the article at

Look for more resources and activities for practitioners working with adult English language learners in the next issue of Network News in June, 2008.