(Over)managing learning: The “administrative burden” consumes staff time and priorities in a community literacy program

A program coordinator in a community-based Literacy and Basic Skills (LBS) program took some time from her work to walk me through the systems and processes she has developed to fulfill mandated ministry reporting and organize a learning program.* Patti (a pseudonym) works full-time at an urban community-centre, which hosts the LBS program. Her paid … Continue reading (Over)managing learning: The “administrative burden” consumes staff time and priorities in a community literacy program

Keeping students off the books in LBS: Older adults who want to go online

I was speaking to a literacy program coordinator the other day who told me how she keeps some students off the books in order to work with them in her program. These stowaway learners are older, usually retired adults who want to develop their digital literacy. Keeping them off the books means she doesn’t register … Continue reading Keeping students off the books in LBS: Older adults who want to go online

Messages of failure and not being “normal” are built into the ESEE

In a previous post, I wrote about the  difficulty of the Essential Skills for Education and Employment (ESEE), an assessment being piloted as part of the Learner Gains Research Project (LGRP). The research involves 1800 learners who are to take the ESEE at the beginning and end of their time in a program to see if the … Continue reading Messages of failure and not being “normal” are built into the ESEE

What makes the spin-off tests so darn difficult (and frustrating)?

All spin-off tests share common elements since they adhere to the basic test development methods used to construct test items in the international literacy tests. Here are the main reasons that they are difficult and an inappropriate measure  in the context of literacy learning programs: The spin-offs claim to be "authentic" and representative of a task … Continue reading What makes the spin-off tests so darn difficult (and frustrating)?