World Education is pleased to announce our engagement in the Building Adult Skills and Attainment Through Technology Research Network (the Adult Skills Network) research initiative. The Adult Skills Network is a newly-funded activity through the Institute of Education Sciences (IES), the non-partisan research and statistics arm of the U.S. Department of Education.
The Adult Skills Network is comprised of six projects that will facilitate the development, evaluation, and adoption of technology-supported interventions through coordinated efforts in two areas: basic and applied research and dissemination and leadership. IES Director Dr. Mark Schneider has noted that this is the largest single federal investment made in support of research on adult education. World Education will co-lead key components on two research initiatives and will c0-coordinate the Adult Skills Network itself.
Coordinating the Adult Skills Network, in partnership with American Institutes for Research (AIR), Jobs for the Future (JFF) and Abt Associates, we will fill three roles to help the Adult Skills Network meet its goal:
1) Coordinate and help facilitate the work of all grantees,
2) Provide national leadership in knowledge generation and translation, and
3) Guide large-scale dissemination of research-based resources to practitioners and other stakeholders in a form they can effectively use.
We will facilitate information sharing across the Network research teams and beyond, breaking down the research-to-practice divide to strengthen adult education programs by boosting their capacity to improve learner outcomes through leveraging technology-supported interventions and resources. The ultimate goal is to address the learning needs of millions of U.S. adults working toward building foundational skills and academic attainment. Learn more about the project and access the recording from the kick-off webinar here.
We will also work to improve our understanding of effective adult numeracy and digital literacy instruction through the Adult Numeracy in the Digital Era: Adaptive Technology for Quantitative and Digital Literacy study. The team will develop and test an adaptive online adult education math curriculum and accompanying professional development. The test will take place in a mix of urban and rural adult basic numeracy sites across the state of Pennsylvania. Over the course of the project, approximately 45 adult numeracy instructors and more than 1,600 adult basic education learners will participate.
Through an exploration and development study, Teaching Skills That Matter (TSTM) – SkillBlox, we will explore the rollout of the Teaching Skills That Matter (TSTM) in Adult Education project, an initiative of the U.S. Department of Education’s Office of Career, Technical, and Adult Education (OCTAE), and how it is operationalized through use of the educational technology platform, SkillBlox, an educational technology developed by World Education’s CrowdEd Learning initiative. The multi-staged project funds refinements to SkillBlox and supports opportunities to work with instructors to increase its TSTM-aligned content and usability.
Together with our partners, we will build capacity across the US to create or make use of technology-enabled, evidence-based learning resources that will improve the quality of education for millions of adults.