Title

Training dilemmas and recommendations with volunteer instructors in small, faith-based adult ESL programs

Document Type

Article

Publication Date

3-1-2019

Abstract

Faith-based adult English as a second language (ESL) programs provide beneficial services to the underserved adult English language learner (ELL) population in the United States (Chao & Mantero,). However, these programs face a critical training dilemma, often lacking qualified volunteer instructors and the time or resources to train them, which can negatively impact student learning (Chao & Kuntz,; Pennycook & Coutand-Marin,; Perry & Hart,). Directors in these programs grapple with the realities of their volunteer workforce and faith context while providing the instructor training necessary to meet student needs and facilitate high-quality instruction. Nevertheless, research has overlooked smaller volunteer-run ESL programs (Mathews-Aydinli,), primarily focusing on ESL programs in K–12 and higher education settings. In order to understand the complex instructor training dilemma that faces faith-based ESL programs and provide some solutions, this article discusses the current status of adult English language education in the United States, highlights the need for training volunteer instructors in faith-based adult ESL programs, and examines the constraints of developing training in these programs. The article concludes with recommendations for teacher training along with several suggestions for future research to adequately address student needs in small, faith-based adult ESL contexts.

Publication Title

TESOL Journal

Volume

10

Issue

1

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

10.1002/tesj.374

ISSN

10567941

E-ISSN

19493533

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