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Adult Ed Day Schedule

Schedule at a Glance

6:30 am-8:15 am Registration 
8:30 am-9:45 am Concurrent Sessions 1
10:00 am-11:15 am Concurrent Sessions 2
11:30 am-12:30 pm Keynote Address
12:30 pm-1:30 pm Lunch
1:30 pm- 2:45 pm Concurrent Sessions 3
3:00 pm-4:15 pm Concurrent Sessions 4
4:30 pm-5:30 pm Panel


A. Program Administration

B. Innovations in Practice

C. Standards in Adult Education

D. Assessment of Learning

E. Removing Barriers to Success

Concurrent Sessions 1

8:30 am-9:45 am

A. Language Training and Funding in Ontario: An Overview
Grainne O’Donnell and Mourad Mardikian

In Ontario, the federal and provincial governments invest substantially in English and French language training for adults. The presenters discuss how these two parallel systems run separately, collaborate, and intersect, and how the different funder mandates and funding models inform learner eligibility, assessment, program planning, and delivery.

B. Blended Learning: What Does Research Say?
Agnieszka Palalas

With innovative learning tools such as mobile devices, ESL teachers can combine face-to-face methods and technology-mediated tasks to support language learning outside and inside the classroom. This session provides a brief overview of research on blended learning, followed by the discussion of the methods and effectiveness of mobile-assisted language learning.

C. Language Standards: One Framework and Its Impact on Adult ESL
Marianne Kayed

This session gives examples of one framework, the Canadian Language Benchmarks (CLB), and its impact on adult language training, assessment, and research. The CLB standard is used in a wide variety of adult ESL contexts. Participants learn how the standard is applied in curricula, resources, and assessments.

D. Operationalizing Assessment: Concept to Reality
Shirley Graham

This session presents the stages of implementing a portfolio-based assessment model into the Ottawa-Carleton District School Board's TESOL program. Topics that will be discussed include finding the right lead instructors and understanding what, exactly, they do; managing expectations; developing timelines; and providing appropriate resources.

E. Barriers and Challenges of Language Policy Implementation for TESOL Programs
Thomas Ricento, Eve Haque, and Doris Warriner

This presentation focuses on programs, policies, and practices for adult immigrants in Canada and the United States. Topics include implementation of policies at the curricular and classroom level, the application of Common Core Standards in U.S. adult education programs, and implementation of the LINC 1–5 Curriculum Guidelines (Canada).

Concurrent Sessions 2

10:00 am-11:15 am

A. Support and Supervision in a Noncredit TESOL Program
Joanne Hincks and Catherine Beckingham

How do you provide quality and consistency in noncredit English language programs? The presenters discuss their program's process for classroom support and performance appraisal, outlining how and why they developed it, and its purpose, guiding principles, and components. They also share the strengths and challenges the model presents.

B. An Online Interactive Curriculum Framework
Anne-Marie Kaskens

This session provides a walk-through of the Online Curriculum Framework, which consists of a set of guiding principles and online interactive planning tools. The interactive tools offer a guided process for designing courses and creating lessons based on learner needs and Canada's national language standards for adult ESL, the Canadian Language Benchmarks.

C. Portfolio-Based Language Assessment and Language Standards: Enhancing Learning Through Assessment
Anne Hajer

Students are excited by portfolio-based language assessment (PBLA), an innovative, principled approach to classroom-based language assessment in adult ESL. PBLA engages students in dialogue to document their learning over time related to goals, needs, and specific standards. The session outlines PBLA key features and the strategies that promote learning.

D. Using Assessment for Learning Strategies to Support Assessment of Learning
Cameron Moser

This session describes how assessment for learning strategies can be embedded into classroom practice as a foundation to support assessment of learning aligned to the Canadian Language Benchmarks, a framework of language standards.

E. Removing Pronunciation Barriers for Adult Learners
Tracey Derwing

An L2 accent is often presumed to present communication problems, but, in fact, accent and comprehensibility (how easy someone is to understand) are not strongly correlated. After a discussion of intelligibility, accent, and comprehensibility, we will examine effective teaching strategies for improving intelligibility and comprehensibility without necessarily changing accent.

Concurrent Sessions 3

1:30 pm-2:45 pm

A. Best Practices in ESL Programming Through the Lens of Administration
Hana Taleb Imai and Diane Hardy

With 20 years of combined program administration experience in the field of ESL, this presentation highlights seven effective practices to support 21st century teaching and learning. Through a lens of innovation, the presenters share how they have responded to changes in learner demographics, government funding priorities, and institutional directions.

B. Innovating and Adapting: Incorporating Technology in the ESL Classroom
Subhadra Ramachandran

This presentation provides a background to the challenges facing ESL professionals today, and addresses some of them by offering practical suggestions for supporting teachers and learners in the harnessing and mindful use of technology in the classroom. 

C. Pragmatics for ESL Students, Teachers, and Their Employers
Julie Kerekes

This presentation examines pragmatic competence; how it is taught, perceived, and learned in ESL contexts; and what aspects are critically important for entering the workforce. The presenter demonstrates a collaborative approach among employers, ESL teachers, researchers, and students to identify and meet the pragmatic needs of ELLs.

D. Assessing Speaking Made Easy
Carla Hall and Amelia Hope

Speaking tests are typically time consuming and logistically complicated for classroom teachers. In this hands-on workshop, participants will explore different formats and approaches to overcome these challenges. After briefly reviewing key principles of test development, different groupings, tasks, and evaluation criteria will be considered.

E. Pragmatics: When the Secret Rules of Language Break Down
Cheryl Whitelaw and Yuji Abe

Pragmatics is a focus on use of language that is appropriate to a particular situation and responsive to the context for communication. This presentation engages with the culturally shaped norms present in Canadian workplace contexts and the challenges internationally educated professionals face to decode and adapt to these norms.

Concurrent Sessions 4

3:00 pm-4:15 pm

A. Accountable Programming: What Does It Mean?
Hanna Cabaj

The expectations of accountability of adult English language programming in Canada brought in the use of common databases, client surveys, logic models, reporting requirements, and evaluation plans. This session looks at the understanding of accountability of adult language programming among program funding bodies, service providing organizations, and program participants.

B. Alternative Professional Development for the Learning Practitioner
M. Briar Jamieson

Although Web 2.0 tools provide opportunities for professional learning, incorporating new skills into practice presents challenges. This workshop introduces participants to a spectrum of nontraditional learning options for professional development. Participants consider self-directed learning plans and the role of the instructor, colleagues, and organization in human resource development.

C. Navigating Change: Portfolio-Based Language Assessment Implementation Insights From Across Canada
Cameron Moser and Neda Todorovska

The implementation of portfolio-based language assessment across Canada can be a wild raft ride through unchartered waters to an unknown destination for program administrators, instructors, and learners. This session explores insights from implementation and the role of leadership in navigating the waters of change.

D. Current Trends in English Writing Assessment
Alister Cumming

This presentation reviews recent research and pedagogical practices associated with five current trends in the assessment of writing for purposes of (a) high-stakes decisions and (b) formative classroom instruction for adolescents and adults learning English: integrated literacy tasks; diagnostic and self-assessments; dynamic assessment; multiliteracies models; and long-term, multiple-methods projects.

E. Reducing Barriers to Accreditation
Andrea Strachan

Skilled immigrants migrating to Canada face challenges to accreditation that go beyond language learning. Government funded initiatives have been implemented to reduce these barriers. This session provides an overview of these initiatives and their interconnectedness with TESOL practice. Additionally, the presenter discusses the impact of these initiatives on the professional development needs of instructors.