While it's apparent there were research design challenges with HEQCO's recent attempt to examine the usefulness of a basic skills test as a post-secondary outcomes measure (see a commentary in University Affairs and my own post), it's more challenging to recognize the problems with the test tool itself. A recent blog post from Higher Education Strategy Associates … Continue reading The use of Education and Skills Online as a performance measure will lead to a series of unintended consequences in post-secondary institutions
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The Higher Education Quality Council (HEQCO) recently proclaimed that one-quarter of graduating students score below adequate on measures of literacy, numeracy This was quickly mimicked in a Globe and Mail headline: One in four Ontario postsecondary students lacks basic literacy, numeracy skills, studies say. HEQCO came to the conclusion based on the results of their … Continue reading HEQCO makes questionable and problematic claims after completing pilot featuring OECD’s Education and Skills Online
A couple of weeks ago the Ministry of Advanced Education and Skills Development (MAESD) released a memo and accompanying reports announcing they will not use the Essential Skills for Employment and Education (ESEE) test to measure the skill gains of students who participate in LBS programs. ESEE was piloted in LBS programs in what was … Continue reading ESEE come, not so ESEE go… What went wrong with the Learner Gains Research Project and what can we learn from it?
I was part of a small group who worked together to develop a response to the recent call for input on the adult education consultation overseen by Ontario's Ministry of Advanced Education and Skills Development (MAESD). In the group were participants and organizers from The Festival of Literacies, "an initiative to bring adult literacy practice and … Continue reading Concerns about competencies and a “digital solution” in adult education reform
Organizational changes in all three learning ministries were made last spring, a few months after Premier Wynne mandated the Ministry of Advanced Education and Skills Development (MAESD) to lead the development of an integrated, learner-focused Adult Education System, working with the ministers of Education, and Citizenship and Immigration. I’ve pieced together those changes using online … Continue reading Organizational Changes and the Newly Created Adult Education – Lifelong Learning and Essential Skills Branch
So much is happening in Ontario’s adult education system in a very short period of time that it becomes challenging to keep track of announcements and various initiatives. In just over a year, those working in LBS, ESL/FSL and Adult Credit have been caught up with The Highly Skilled Workforce Initiative, The LBS evaluation, a symposium … Continue reading Ontario’s Adult Education Consultation and an On-going Concern about a Seemingly Uncoordinated System
On October 5th MAESD invited over 250 LBS program staff to a one-day symposium in Toronto to share and discuss key findings from the LBS evaluation report. The intent was to discuss findings with the field in order to “capture the range of perspectives that were shared.” Discussion sessions were organized around five themes, including … Continue reading A Record of LBS Concerns from the October 5th Symposium
Creating a Closed Feedback Loop and Excluding the Expertise and Knowledge of Those in LBS Programs The LBS logic model is designed to measure its own perception of literacy development, one that is detached from what adult learners actually do in programs, and the teaching and program development work that program staff do. It is … Continue reading The Power of the Logic Model in Coordinating the Work of Policymakers and Local Programs (Part 4)
Long-Term Impact Statements: Misunderstandings, Fundamental Flaws and More Design Inequities Measures of long-term impacts drive the LBS system, as they are used to develop measures that will demonstrate overall system effectiveness and efficiency. They also guide decisions about the types of measures used. There are four long-term impact statements. Two address employment and two indirectly … Continue reading The Power of the Logic Model in Coordinating the Work of Policymakers and Local Programs (Part 3)
Internal Contradictions and the Displacement of Learner-Centred Programming A close reading of the LBS logic model reveals internal contradictions about who the system is designed to support. It also reveals statements that displace the traditional philosophical approach of LBS: learner-centred programming. First, the contradiction. One of the main findings from the LBS evaluation---a lack of … Continue reading The Power of the Logic Model in Coordinating the Work of Policymakers and Local Programs (Part 2)