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Practices with Promise Success Story

Submitted By: John Russell, Citrus College Adult Education Consortium

CCAEC Aligning ESL Course Levels for Seamless Transitions

  • Type of Practice: Alignment of Programs
  • Targeted Population: English Language Learners
  • Program Area(s): English as a Second Language & Citizenship
  • Consortia Involved:
    Citrus College Adult Education Consortium: Azusa Unified School District, Citrus Community College District, Claremont Unified School District, Duarte Unified School District, Glendora Unified School District, Monrovia Unified School District

The Challenge

A significant challenge for creating seamless transitions for CCAEC students was aligning the disparate noncredit courses for each ESL level offered by consortium member institutions. Course descriptions and learning objectives at every ESL level must be aligned across the consortium to better promote student progress and student transition to college credit courses. However, the alignment of courses had many inherent challenges. All K-12 members had varied data measurements, resource constraints and other challenges. Citrus College had its own clearly defined learning objectives and course descriptions for all ESL levels, but these were not necessarily aligned to K-12 member courses, nor did its program use similar data measurements

The Solution

Alignment has been an ongoing process. The initial phase was for K-12 institution to align course descriptions, learning outcomes, and data measurements before involving Citrus faculty. During AB86 planning, significant time and resources were utilized as K-12 faculty met frequently to work on course alignment. A substantial part of that planning time was needed to build community and trust and part of community building included meetings with Citrus faculty. Analysis of pacing, curriculum, assessments and outcomes has progressed and K-12 faculty are in the final phases of completing aligned course descriptions. Citrus faculty will be fully engaged in the winter/spring and final course descriptions will be completed by the fall of 2016.


The eventual goal is for ESL students to be able to move seamlessly between member institutions. A student can move from ESL 1 at Monrovia to ESL 2 at Azusa to ESL 3 at Claremont to ESL 4 at Citrus College and faculty at each school will know that students are proficient at uniform outcomes across levels. This will allow members to better track uniform data of student progress (completion of levels), better address the needs of those students who are not progressing, and encourage students who complete levels to transition to Citrus College or other regional community colleges.

The Data

Data collected in 2016-17 will track consortium-wide student progress through aligned ESL and track noncredit student transition to college credit courses and will be posted on the consortium website.

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