[Assessment 1120] Re: {Dangerous Content?} RE: No Questions or Comments?!

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Forrest Chisman forrest at crosslink.net
Tue Feb 5 19:08:36 EST 2008


To all of you who commented on level of prior education as a factor in
student performance:



Everyone with whom Jodi Crandall and I talked believes that more highly
educated students do better in terms of persistence, learning gains, and
transitions. And learning theory would lead us to expect this. Regrettably
we found very little hard data about how much difference prior education
makes, because too few programs track the level of prior education of their
students and correlate it with outcomes. DO any of you do this? That is, do
you have any data on HOW MUCH difference level of prior education makes? Or
any strong impressions? And are there "cut points" in prior education that
seem to make a difference -- e.g. students who are completely illiterate,
students who at least reached high school, high school graduates, college
graduates, etc. -- or is level of prior education pretty much of a
continuum?



More importantly, what can programs DO to narrow the gap between highly
educated students and those with less prior education? Presumably students
with very low levels of education are more likely end up in the lower level
ESL courses (Literacy or Low-Beginning levels) why are (almost by
definition) in the business of teaching basic literacy and sometimes math.
Why isn't this enough? In your experience, does the "gap" exist at these
levels too, or mainly at higher levels? At any levels, would it be desirable
to place less highly educated students in separate classes from those with
more education and adjust the curriculum/support systems for them
accordingly? Some programs have tried "native language literacy" or the
Spanish GED. What has been the experience of any of you with these
approaches? Any other ideas? IS there an adult ESL equivalent of "bi-lingual
education" that should be tried?



It seems to me that we need to come up with better ideas. Because the people
who study immigration tell us that the level of education of immigrants has
been falling. And if Immigration Reform mandates large numbers of
undocumented people to "learn English" (whatever that means), ESL programs
may be swamped with students who have very little education in their native
countries and too little money to serve them. So anyone who has any ideas
about how to bridge this "education gap" could help us a lot by posting
ideas about how to close it on this discussion list.



Forrest Chisman

Vice President

CAAL







From: assessment-bounces at nifl.gov [mailto:assessment-bounces at nifl.gov] On
Behalf Of Tina_Luffman at yc.edu
Sent: Tuesday, February 05, 2008 1:32 PM
To: The Assessment Discussion List
Subject: [Assessment 1109] Re: {Dangerous Content?} RE: No Questions or
Comments?!




Hi Jackie,

Thank you for this information. I believe this research must be what my
former Spanish teacher was basing her argument on for bilingual education in
the K-12 school system.

Tina

Tina Luffman
Coordinator, Developmental Education
Verde Valley Campus
928-634-6544
tina_luffman at yc.edu




"Jackie Coelho" <jackie.coelho at gmail.com>
Sent by: assessment-bounces at nifl.gov

02/05/2008 11:13 AM


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Subject

[Assessment 1108] Re: {Dangerous Content?} RE: No Questions or
Comments?!








Hi Tina,

This has been researched already and is the basis for the arguement in
favor of bilingual education, a good idea that was not implemented in
the best way. For many years people have known that a good foundation
in literacy in the first language will facilitate learning in a second
or third language.

Another interesting twist is the existence of languages that are not
written.

Jackie


On 2/5/08, Tina_Luffman at yc.edu <Tina_Luffman at yc.edu> wrote:

> Hi list members,

>

> My experience teaching ELAA students in the GED class is similar to that

of

> Gail. If the student has a solid educational background in the country

they

> came from in their native language, they tend to advance rather quickly

and

> get their GED. Those coming with 6th grade educations from their country

or

> lower tend to stay in the GED class for years and do not make much

> advancement.

>

> This experience relates well to research done among Native American tribes

> teaching them English. Those Native Americans who were first taught

literacy

> skills in their own tongue learned English much quicker than those who

tried

> to learn literacy skills in English without that background in their own

> tongue. I also found similar problems when I was learning Spanish. The

> concepts I could mentally translate from English to Spanish were much

easier

> to grasp and learn than those I didn't know in English. Perhaps this is

> something deserving more research.

>

> Tina

> Tina Luffman

> Coordinator, Developmental Education

> Verde Valley Campus

> 928-634-6544

> tina_luffman at yc.edu

>

> -----assessment-bounces at nifl.gov wrote: -----

>

> To: "The Assessment Discussion List" <assessment at nifl.gov>

> From: "Gail Burnett" <gburnett at sanford.org>

> Sent by: assessment-bounces at nifl.gov

> Date: 02/04/2008 06:34PM

> Subject: [Assessment 1104] {Dangerous Content?} RE: No Questions or

> Comments?!

>

>

> Warning: This message has had one or more attachments removed

> Warning: (not named).

> Warning: Please read the "AttachmentWarning.txt" attachment(s) for more

> information.

>

> In our small adult education program, my experience (just about three

years)

> is that students with solid educational backgrounds advance, particularly

if

> they're not working too many hours. Those who advance the slowest, if at

> all, are immigrants who are barely literate in their first language. I

would

> say that lack of education is a bigger factor than lack of time; a student

> who works full-time and is exhausted often will still succeed because

he/she

> is familiar with academic work, and is goal-oriented. What we do is try to

> get our low-level students to come up with goals, but that's a hard

concept

> in a second language.

>

> This does not mean that the factors mentioned in the research don't play a

> part, though. I'm one of those barely-trained teachers (transitioned from

> another career, got trained mainly through workshops rather than classes).

> My skill level very well may contribute to students' slow advancement.

It's

> hard for small adult education programs to get highly skilled ESL

teachers.

> The pay is low and there are no benefits. But my program is encouraging me

> to get extra training and has me on a plan of improvement. I think we're

> making some progress.

>

> Does this address any of the issues? And am I submitting it right?

>

> ________________________________

>

> From: assessment-bounces at nifl.gov on behalf of Marie Cora

> Sent: Mon 2/4/2008 6:50 PM

> To: Assessment at nifl.gov

> Subject: [Assessment 1103] No Questions or Comments?!

>

>

> Hello everyone,

>

> I'm so surprised! No one has anything to comment on regarding your

> program's effectiveness at helping ESL students advance?? I was very

> curious to know if subscribers experience the same types of issues that

Dr.

> Chisman and Dr. Crandall found in their research: a lack of intensity of

> instruction/few protocols for transitioning students/few opportunities for

> professional development.

>

> What are the issues in your program that you feel inhibit the ESL student

> from advancing? What do you try to do about that?

>

> Please post your questions and comments now.

>

> Thanks!

>

> Marie Cora

> Assessment Discussion List Moderator

>

>

> Marie Cora

> marie.cora at hotspurpartners.com

> < <mailto:marie.cora at hotspurpartners.com>

mailto:marie.cora at hotspurpartners.com>

> NIFL Assessment Discussion List Moderator

> <http://www.nifl.gov/mailman/listinfo/assessment>

http://www.nifl.gov/mailman/listinfo/assessment

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