NotesFAQContact Us
Search Tips
ERIC Number: ED540600
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2010-Jul
Pages: 8
Abstractor: ERIC
Promoting Learner Engagement when Working with Adult English Language Learners. CAELA Network Brief
Miller, Susan Finn
Center for Adult English Language Acquisition
Teachers of adults learning English often compete with many demands on learners' attention. Concerns about family, jobs, money, and transportation; fatigue; and negative past experiences with education are some of the factors that might inhibit an adult learner's full engagement in class. In a study of learner engagement in adult literacy programs, Beder, Tomkins, Medina, Riccioni, and Deng (2006) noted that engaged learners in K-12 settings have both the will and the ability to participate in and carry out work in class, and Schalge and Soga (2008) suggest that students' persistence in adult ESL classes may be related to their engagement in the class. Unlike students in K-12 programs, the vast majority of adult learners are voluntary participants in their learning, so the "motivation to engage is a cognitive disposition that learners bring with them when they enroll in adult literacy classes". This brief gives an overview of theory and research on learner engagement in language-learning settings, describes specific instructional strategies and program structures to promote the engagement of adults learning English, and makes recommendations for further research on learner engagement in this population. This brief is written for experienced teachers working with adult English language learners and for program administrators and trainers seeking to help teachers engage learners in instruction.
Center for Adult English Language Acquisition. 4646 40th Street NW, Washington, DC 20016. Tel: 202-355-1500; Fax: 202-363-7204; Web site:
Publication Type: Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: Adult Education
Audience: Teachers; Administrators
Language: English
Sponsor: Office of Vocational and Adult Education (ED)
Authoring Institution: Center for Adult English Language Acquisition
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A