[Assessment 1161] Re: {Dangerous Content?} RE: No Questions or Comments?!

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Jodi Crandall crandall at umbc.edu
Thu Feb 7 17:33:15 EST 2008


Andres,

Thanks for this. If the Spanish GED program is intensive, then
students would probably not have time for ESL and if they do,
attending classes at another program in the community makes sense.

I also understand your desire to focus on more academic ESL. I'm
also curious to know if your college also offers career/technical
training. Does your academic ESL program align with what's needed
there or do you offer integrated Vocational ESL and Vocational/
Career/Technical training programs?

I think we all empathize with the limited funding and the amount of
resources needed to meet NRS reporting requirements.

Jodi
On Feb 6, 2008, at 6:21 PM, andresmuro at aol.com wrote:


> Jodi:

>

> The credit ESL program in the college is very academic. However it

> provides students with financial aid and other goodies. We feel

> that the students will not do well in a credit academic ESL program

> until they have a level comparable to GED in their native language.

> Also, a GED certificate is a way to demonstrate ability to benefit

> to qualify for financial aid. Those students who get into the

> credit ESL program without native language literacy don't do well.

>

> Students can attend other ESL classes in the community while they

> are attending our classes. We stopped providing ESL because of

> limited funding to provide what we would consider meaningful ESL.

> Also, our Spanish GED program is fairly intensive and our students

> would not have enough time to attend an additional program. We have

> a few students who may be attending our classes and an ESL class

> concurrently. Those are a minority

>

> The truth is that we started as an ESL literacy program many years

> ago. There was virtually no funding for literacy ESL unless it

> had all kind of testing requirements. Also, it is very hard to

> train teachers to be really good at ESL. The system that encourages

> large number of untrained part timers prevents this from happening.

>

> I know that a lot of people in these listservs claim exemplary

> service and illustrate with examples of what they have done. I

> don't doubt that their claims are 100% true. However, we are in

> the minority. If I could get you and Heide and Elsa and Andy Nash

> and Leonore and Deborah Schwartz, and Anson Green and Federico and

> others to be my ESL teachers, I would have the best program in the

> world. However, the fact is that in addition to the barriers that

> ESL students face in their daily lives, plus the bureaucratic and

> assessment barriers that the system creates for teachers and

> students, plus the difficulty hiring and retaining highly qualified

> ESL staff makes it very difficult to have a successful ESL program.

>

> I feel that until we get rid of WIA/NRS it will be tough to create

> good stuff in a systematic way.

>

> Andres

>

>

>

>

> -----Original Message-----

> From: JoAnn (Jodi) Crandall <crandall at umbc.edu>

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

> Sent: Wed, 6 Feb 2008 1:27 pm

> Subject: [Assessment 1141] Re: {Dangerous Content?} RE: No

> Questions or Comments?!

>

> Andres,

>

>

>

> It is great that you provide Spanish language literacy and GED

> classes for

>

> your students. There's no question that native language literacy

>

> contributes not just to the development of the first language, but

> also to

>

> English language development when students take oral ESL classes.

> There

>

> is some research in this area by Michele Burtoff with Haitians in

> the U.S.

>

> and there is a lot of research (see especially research by David

> Ramirez

>

> which compares children who had 6, 3 or no years of bilingual

> education)

>

> that shows that providing bilingual education not only has all the

>

> benefits that would be expected, but students also achieve in

> English as

>

> well or better than those who only had instruction in English.

>

>

>

> We also found that Spanish GED classes had large numbers of

> students at

>

> the colleges, since students who take the GED in Spanish are able to

>

> bypass the need for extensive ESL just to get this credential.

> They might

>

> want to take ESL as well, but the desire for the GED is often for

>

> work-related reasons. I'm not clear on why you ask students to

> wait until

>

> after they have passed the GED to take ESL classes. Can you tell us a

>

> little more about that?

>

>

>

> Of course not all students who enroll in adult ESL are Spanish

> speakers

>

> and there may not be enough who speak any language to provide literacy

>

> classes for them in their own language, but programs might try to

> partner

>

> with immigrant or refugee-related community-based organizations which

>

> could reach more students and also identify someone to provide the

>

> instruction. Still, there will be students who will not be able

> to take

>

> literacy classes in their own languages and for them, a separate ESL

>

> literacy class seems to be the best option.

>

>

>

> It would be great to hear from others about their experiences both

> with

>

> first language (Spanish and other languages) literacy classes,

> Spanish GED

>

> classes, and literacy ESL classes.

>

>

>

> How do you place students in your literacy classes? Do you use a

>

> standardized test or do you have informal ways of determining if

> someone

>

> would be better served in a literacy ESL class?

>

>

>

>

>

> Jodi

>

>

>

> >

>

> > Problem is that in many ESL people are placed in ESL classes

> based on an

>

> > English placement multiple choice test. A student with advanced

> education

>

> > in L1 and one with little education in L1 may know very little

> English

>

> > and they may both be placed in the same level. The student with

> advance

>

> > education will progress much faster than the one with little

> education.

>

> > The advanced L1 student will understand concepts like sentence,

>

> > paragraph, verb, subject, direct object, adjective, composition

> and essay

>

> > readily. The one with with little education will need to

> understand these

>

> > concepts. It takes a while for people to master these concepts. A

> highly

>

> > educated L2? learner will likely progress faster academically in

> a second

>

> > language than a fluent native speaker of that? language with limited

>

> > academic education, for the same reason. This is observed

> regularly in

>

> > universities all over the US. highly educated foreign students who

>

> > acquired English as L2 recently will do better than their Eng

>

> > lish speaking counterparts in academic tasks in English. Jim

> Cummins has

>

> > articulated this clearly with his BICS and CALPS.

>

> >

>

> > In our program at El Paso Community College we have found

> evidence of

>

> > this. We stopped doing literacy ESL a while back for this reason.

> The

>

> > college has an academic ESL program. Instead of doing ESL

> literacy we

>

> > started offering Spanish Literacy and GED many years ago since

> the vast

>

> > majority of our students are Spanish speakers. Once our students

> acquire

>

> > their Spanish GED they transition into the ESL program and do

> better than

>

> > those students who don't have L1 academic skills. Even if takes

> them a

>

> > while to acquire the L1 literacy, they will do better. Those with

> no L1

>

> > literacy often stay in ESL forever and they drop out, start again in

>

> > another program, drop out and continue the same pattern. I think

> that this

>

> > happens because of the mixture of academically ready students and

> those

>

> > that are not ready, since most ESL programs focus on traditional

>

> > academics. For L1 low literacy students to be able to progress in

> L2 there

>

> > has to be a program specifically designed for them that teache

>

> > s skills in L2 in new and innovative ways without interference from

>

> > academically skilled L1 students. Right now we don't have a

> system that

>

> > systematically does this, and the WIA/NRS system prevents this form

>

> > happening.

>

> >

>

> > Hope that this makes sense,

>

> >

>

> > Andres

>

> >

>

> >

>

> >

>

> >

>

> >

>

> >

>

> >

>

> >

>

> >

>

> > -----Original Message-----

>

> > From: Jackie Coelho <jackie.coelho at gmail.com>

>

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

>

> > Sent: Wed, 6 Feb 2008 5:01 am

>

> > Subject: [Assessment 1128] Re: {Dangerous Content?} RE: No

> Questions or

>

> > Comments?!

>

> >

>

> >

>

> >

>

> >

>

> >

>

> >

>

> >

>

> >

>

> >

>

> >

>

> > Forrest,

>

> >

>

> >

>

> > ?? I like the idea of separate classes for those with a literacy

>

> > background and those without. These two groups have such

> different needs.

>

> > Having both in the class make it difficult for a teacher to meet

> the needs

>

> > of either group well and I find that often the stronger students

> dominate

>

> > the class, and their drive push the teacher forward. If the

> instructor

>

> > does not keep up with the students who are learning at a faster

> rate, they

>

> > often become frustrated and leave or mentally check out. However,

> if the

>

> > instructor keeps up with those students, the others are unable to

> keep up

>

> > and they get frustrated.

>

> >

>

> >

>

> >

>

> > ? I think that literacy could perhaps be separated out. And

> regardless of

>

> > how you do it, well-trained instructors are essential.

>

> >

>

> >

>

> > Jackie

>

> >

>

> > ?

>

> >

>

> >

>

> > On 2/5/08, Forrest Chisman <forrest at crosslink.net> wrote:

>

> >

>

> >

>

> >

>

> >

>

> >

>

> >

>

> >

>

> > 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

>

> >

>

> >

>

> >

>

> >

>

> >

>

> >

>

> >

>

> >

>

> >

>

> >

>

> > Please respond to

>

> > The Assessment Discussion List <assessment at nifl.gov>

>

> >

>

> >

>

> >

>

> >

>

> >

>

> >

>

> >

>

> >

>

> >

>

> >

>

> >

>

> >

>

> >

>

> >

>

> >

>

> >

>

> >

>

> >

>

> > To

>

> >

>

> >

>

> >

>

> >

>

> >

>

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

>

> >

>

> >

>

> >

>

> >

>

> >

>

> >

>

> >

>

> >

>

> >

>

> > cc

>

> >

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> >

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> >

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> >

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> >

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> >

>

> >

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> >

>

> >

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> >

>

> >

>

> >

>

> > Subject

>

> >

>

> >

>

> >

>

> >

>

> >

>

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

>

> > ?Comments?!

>

> >

>

> >

>

> >

>

> >

>

> >

>

> >

>

> > ?

>

> >

>

> >

>

> >

>

> >

>

> >

>

> >

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> >

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> >

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> >

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> >

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> >

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> >

>

> >

>

> >

>

> >

>

> >

>

> >

>

> >

>

> > 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>

>

> >

>

> >> NIFL Assessment Discussion List Moderator

>

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

>

> >

>

> >>

>

> >>

>

> >> This email and any files transmitted with it are confidential and

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> >> -------------------------------

>

> >> National Institute for Literacy

>

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> >>

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>

> >> -------------------------------

>

> >> National Institute for Literacy

>

> >> Assessment mailing list

>

> >

>

> >> Assessment at nifl.gov

>

> >> To unsubscribe or change your subscription settings, please go to

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

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> >

>

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> --

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> JoAnn (Jodi) Crandall

>

> Professor, Education Department

>

> Director, Ph.D. Program in Language, Literacy & Culture

>

> Coordinator, Peace Corps Master's International Program in ESOL/

> Bilingual

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> Education

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> University of Maryland, Baltimore County (UMBC)

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> 1000 Hilltop Circle, Baltimore, MD 21250

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> ph: 410-455-2313/2376 fax: 410-455-8947/1880

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> email: crandall at umbc.edu

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JoAnn (Jodi) Crandall
Professor and Director
Language, Literacy and Culture Ph.D. Program
Director, Peace Corps Master's Intl Program in ESOL/Bilingual Education
University of Maryland Baltimore County
1000 Hilltop Circle
Baltimore, MD 21250
tel: 410-455-2313
fax: 410-455-8947
eml: crandall at umbc.edu




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