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September 2010

CAELA Network Update
New Briefs
ESL Resource Database
About Network News

Woman in front of computerNetwork News was published quarterly by the CAELA Network at the Center for Applied Linguistics. Visit the Network News archive to read previous issues.

Network News 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).


BulletFinal Issue of Network News
The CAELA Network project will end September 30, 2010. Funded by the U.S. Department of Education, Office of Vocational and Adult Education (OVAE), this project provides technical assistance to 12 states – Arizona, Florida, Georgia, Iowa, Massachusetts, Minnesota, Montana, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Texas, Utah, and Virginia – as they work to develop quality, systematic, data-informed professional development in order to improve the instruction offered to adults learning English.

For information about the activities of the state teams and to download products they have developed, visit the state activities page on the CAELA Network website.

The CAELA Network website will continue to be available for access to resources, professional development, and technical assistance for adult ESL professionals.

The CAELA Network project has produced several professional development tools, including the following:

  • Fifteen Research-to-Practice Briefs:
    These briefs summarize current evidence-based information on issues related to adult English language acquisition.
    • Briefs for teachers. Topics include working with learners with emerging literacy; preparing adults learning English to transition to further education and to success at the workplace; evidence-based, student-centered instruction; teaching grammar; teaching pronunciation; teaching listening and speaking; using technology to teach adults learning English; and promoting learner engagement.
    • Briefs for program administrators and teacher trainers. Topics include using data to plan professional development, managing programs for adult English language learners, observing and providing feedback to teachers, supervising and supporting teachers, using reflective practice in professional development, and professional development for experienced teachers.

  • Education for Adult ELLs coverEducation for Adult English Language Learners in the United States:Trends, Research, and Promising Practices
    This paper describes the adult education system in the United States — learner populations, programs serving them, assessment, professional development for practitioners, and research.

For information about current OVAE initiatives to improve the quality of instruction for adults learning English, visit the U.S. Department of Education Office of Vocational and Adult Education website.

Learn more about CAL's resources for practitioners working with adults learning English.

BulletMan in front of computerNew Briefs from CAELA Network

The following briefs were published this summer:

Promoting Learner Engagement When Working With Adult English Language Learners
This brief describes specific instructional strategies and program structures to promote the engagement of adults learning English. It provides an overview of theory and research on learner engagement in language-learning settings and makes recommendations for further research.

Using Oral Language Skills to Build on the Emerging Literacy of Adult English Learners
This brief reviews the research, describes ways to capitalize on adult learners’ oral skills to create successful literacy learning experiences, and suggests areas for further research to bolster the knowledge base in working with adult second language learners who are in the process of becoming literate.

BulletESL Resource Database

Hand on mouseAdult ESL professional developers, trainers, and state staff need resources that help them deliver high-quality, evidence-based trainings and sustained follow-up activities. The ESL Resource Database includes nearly 300 documents of interest to teachers, administrators, students, and researchers interested in education of adult English language learners. It links directly to most of the resources online.

Read External Reviews
In cooperation with the Literacy Information and Communication System (LINCS), selected resources from the ESL Resource Database have been externally reviewed and approved for inclusion in the LINCS English Language Acquisition Resource Collection.

An example of a resource reviewed by LINCS is the brief, Reflective Practice in the Professional Development of Teachers of Adult English Language Learners. It describes the theoretical basis for and research on reflective practice and suggests ways that teachers of adult English language learners can incorporate reflective practice into their teaching. Read the review.

BulletUpcoming Conferences

The following conferences may be of interest to practitioners working with adult English language learners. Look for CAL adult ESL presentations at TESOL and COABE.

American Association for Adult and Continuing Education (AAACE)
October 24 – 29, 2010
Clearwater Beach, Florida
American Association for Applied Linguistics (AAAL)
March 26 – 29, 2011
Chicago, Illinois
American Educational Research Association (AERA)
April 8 – 12, 2011
New Orleans, Louisiana


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