A comparative analysis of two English literacy and civics education programs in Oregon Public Deposited

http://ir.library.oregonstate.edu/concern/graduate_thesis_or_dissertations/r494vp174

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  • The purpose of this study was to investigate the perspectives of education professionals who manage, coordinate, and instruct in the English Literacy and Civics Education Grant (EL/Civics) Programs in Oregon community colleges. The study compared the EL/Civics Grant Program to the conventional English as Second Language (ESL) programs offered at two community colleges. The impetus for this study was the desire to better understand, from the perspective of adult literacy practitioners, how and why students in the EL/Civics Grant classes continue to demonstrate higher skill level completion rates than their counterparts in conventional English as a Second Language classes. The study was guided by the following question: Why do the Oregon EL/Civics programs demonstrate higher student skill level completion rates than do the Oregon ESL programs? A comparative, descriptive case study was conducted to explore the answers to this question. Data collected from each college were analyzed to create five overall themes that represent the perspectives of the study participants: (1) EL/Civics is integrated into the general ESL program providing seamless movement between class levels within the ESL program; (2) EL/Civics classes are contextualized, use authentic materials and contexts, and connect the classroom with the community; therefore resulting in better instructional outcomes achieved; (3) consistent engagement in professional development positively impacts instruction; (4) same assessment were used and practitioners were knowledgable about placement and progress ; and (5) the majority of students in the EL/Civics classes share the same native language and home country. The study provides insight into the professional wisdom of educators as it relates to program design, intructional delivery methods, learning outcomes, and professional development within a contained literacy program.
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