Transitions to College

Image of Academic Literacy class 2012

Transitions to College

More than 75% of students who start college needing ESL or developmental classes drop out before obtaining a credential. Many Adult Basic Education (ABE) students don't enter post-seconary institutions at all. Research conducted by the ABE Teaching and Learning System (ATLAS) at Hamline University shows a significant gap between the skills college students need and what they learn in ABE classes.

Private Institutions

While public higher education institutions have begun partnering with ABE programs, many private institutions have yet to benefit from the additional support and resources ABE can provide for under-prepared students.

Partnership with St. Catherine's University

Responding to the need for bridges from Adult Basic Education to higher education, the Literacy Council offers a two-semester Academic Literacy class in partnership with St. Catherine University. This course is open to qualifying ABE learners who want a college experience or want to prepare for college.

Academic Literacy Course Model

The Literacy Council's year-long course includes skills that help bridge the gap between ABE and college, including:

  • Academic literacy skills including holding structured academic conversations, critical reading and writing
  • Critical Thinking elements and standards such as identifying purpose, key questions, and inferences with standards such as accuracy, clarity and relevance
  • Self-directed learning skills such as tracking assignments, estimating the time they will take, and keeping an academic planner
  • Self-development skills including identifying and building strengths using StrengthsFinder

Sample lesson plan

This lesson plan includes several academic literacy activities that can be done alone or in sequence with any academic text.