ERIC Number: ED239032
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1983-Aug
Reference Count: 0
Impact Evaluation of Adult Basic Education Program Outcomes. ABE Evaluation Project Final Report.
Mahaffy, John E.
This study attempted to determine what difference, if any, participation in adult basic education (ABE) programs makes in the lives of undereducated adults. The nature of the impact was examined on two dimensions: (1) the qualitative impact in terms of changes in the quality of student lives and (2) the financial impact in terms of changes in the financial well-being of students. Data were gathered through interviews with a random sample of 190 students who had left an ABE program within the five years prior to the study. (These samples represent about 10 percent of the current student population and 5 percent of former students.) Analysis of the data showed that the qualitative impact of the ABE programs was positive. Most of the former students had achieved their self-listed goals, such as enrolling in further education. Students also reported substantial improvement in basic skills, applied practical knowledge, community participation, and involvement in their children's education. In most cases, students attributed these benefits to their participation in an ABE program. The study further showed that the major benefits from the ABE program are realized after the student has left. In the area of financial impact, former students reported some gains in personal income, while current students' income did not increase. These findings suggest that time is needed for students to find employment and make changes in their lives. In addition, the cost/benefit ratio of program completers was highly positive. Therefore, the evidence presented in this study strongly indicates that adult basic education programs are effective and are beneficial to both the students and to society in a variety of important ways. (KC)
Publication Type: Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: Montana State Dept. of Public Instruction, Helena. Div. of Adult Education.
Authoring Institution: Montana State Univ., Bozeman. Dept. of Educational Services.
Identifiers: Montana; 310 Project