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Competencies for an Adult Literacy Teacher for Immigrants the Nordic Alfa Council Antra Carlsen, NVL EBSN Conference in Prague May 30-31, 2012.

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Presentation on theme: "Competencies for an Adult Literacy Teacher for Immigrants the Nordic Alfa Council Antra Carlsen, NVL EBSN Conference in Prague May 30-31, 2012."— Presentation transcript:

1 Competencies for an Adult Literacy Teacher for Immigrants the Nordic Alfa Council Antra Carlsen, NVL EBSN Conference in Prague May 30-31, 2012

2 Basic adult language and literacy programmes- in the Nordic countries = Educational programmes for LESLLA-students (Low Educated Second Language Learners Acquisition) In Denmark: Danish Education (DU1) In Finland: Integration programmes In Iceland: Labour market activity In Norway Norwegian for Adult Immigrants (Track 1) In Sweden: Swedish for Immigrants (sfi) (Track 1)

3 Why work on a description of competencies for an adult literacy teacher? A neglected educational area No Teacher training available for this specific purpose and this target group A complex educational situation for teachers of low educated adult second language learners (“LESLLA- learners”) A complex educational situation for low educated adult second language learners (“LESLLA-learners”) No defined knowledge base for Adult literacy teachers Theoretical - Educational - Methodological

4 Nordic Mapping study ( ) ”The Nordic Adult Educator – a mapping of formal competence requirements of the adult educators and education and training opportunities within the field of adult education in the Nordic countries” initiated by the Advisory Group for Nordic Co- operation on Adult Education (SVL) Nordic Alfa Council ( ): Formal requirements for teacher competence in literacy programmes for foreigners and immigrants in the Nordic countries and the existing teacher training in literacy education for adults

5 Denmark Has formal requirements for teacher qualifications in literacy programmes. Qualification of Educator in ”Danish as a second language” is required. The teacher training program includes literacy education as a theme. The teacher qualification requirement was introduced as required by law in 1998, replacing an earlier mandatory course of 40 hours in literacy. Access level for the programme to become a teacher of Danish as a second language is general teacher training or BA in a language from the university. Teacher of Danish as a second language has been accredited to MA level in 2010.

6 Finland There are formal requirements to have a general teacher qualification in order to educate adults. There are no specific teacher training programmes targetted for second language training. Universities are responsible for the curricula in the teacher training programmes. No special recommendations from the Ministries concerning basic literacy programmes for immigrants.

7 Iceland There are formal requirements to have a general teacher qualification in order to educate adults. There are no specific teacher training programmes targetted for second language training. No special recommendations from the Ministries concerning basic literacy programmes for immigrants.

8 Norway There are no universal formal requirements to have a general teacher qualification in order to educate adults, however the educators are expected to have pedagogical / didactical competences. There are no specific teacher training programmes targetted for second language training. There is a strong recommendation related to the present curriculum that the educators working with adults with short or no formal schooling should have a subject knowledge in Norwegian as a foreign language and knowledge in basic literacy training.

9 Sweden No specific requirements, imposed by law, for teacher qualifications to teach literacy to adults: foreigners and immigrants. It calls for an initial teacher education, adapted to the second foreign language teaching. "Sfi-lärerutbildningen": Swedish for immigrants and basic adult education proramme

10 Point of departure Great frustration among practicing educators due to: Uncertain and not well informed decisions among civil servants, local and national authorities: Lack (scarcity) of evaluations of best practice Lack (scarcity) of research on content, outcomes, assessments and organization of Basic Literacy Education for Adults An urge for an elucidation of a professional knowledge base as a starting point for a continuing professional development and educational programmes for teachers An urge for an effective adult language and literacy education of high quality, built on scientific and professional knowledge and experience

11 Why Nordic cooperation ? It brings focus to low educated learners´ educational situation It gives stimulation and provides exchange room for teachers It makes coordination of existing research possible It utilizes L2 and Literacy experiences from all countries It stimulates the development, new partnerships, new networks It improves and stimulates the Nordic language cooperation It makes comparisons of ethnic and linguistic minority groups possible It stimulates production of high quality material

12 Six steps towards an Adult Language and Literacy Teacher Education 2010 An outcome of the Nordic mapping of adult education for low literate second language learners, the KAN report: a project in the Nordic Alfa Council “Nordic description of a knowledge base/ competencies” is launched 2011 Sept Draft 1 Response from different experts 2012 March Draft 2 Response from educators and teachers (at the EU-speak conference) 2012 May Draft 3 Discussions in the Nordic Alfa Council 2012 Sept Draft 4 Presentation at ”The Nordic Alfa Conference”; response from active Nordic Adult Literacy Teachers (the target group) 2012 Dec Final document is presented 2013 Educational programmes for teachers can be built on the competencies

13 Six Competence areas for adult literacy teachers for immigrants 1. Literacy in a global, local and individual perspective. Theoretical and educational aspects 2. Prerequisites for formal learning in a creative and critical learning environment for adults. Based on teacher´s reflective practice and students learning processes and goals 3. Oral communicative competence. Linguistic,developmental and educational aspects 4. Basic literacy learning processes. Focused on adult second language learners 5. Basic everyday mathematics (numeracy) 6. Learning material with a multi-modal perspective for adults

14 Framework: competence descriptions For each of the six competence areas the teacher´s competence is described in detail. The competence is then divided into: 1) the knowledge needed 2) the skills or actions to be performed

15 Future educational options The Alfa Council will together with universities and national organizations continue to work for a diverse, professional course supply for Nordic Adult literacy teachers

16 The Nordic Alfa Council is a network consisting of representatives of national agencies and institutions that have responsibility for the development of education for adults with no or very short formal schooling and who do not have the Nordic languages as their mother tongue. Aims: improve the opportunities for this group of adults to actively participate in community life and democratic processes be an expert group for the Nordic Council of Ministers and the Nordic countries' respective training, integration and employment services be a platform for exchange of experience between the Nordic authorities, national resource centers, research institutions and training providers collect and coordinate expertise and experience in order to increase awareness of issues related to the target group and learning in different social contexts through

17 Alfa Council contacts Coordinator: Helga Arnesen, Vox Qarin Franker, Gothenburg and Stockholm university Lilly Christensen, VUF, Copenhagen


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