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ABE-ESL Reading Research Project: Reflections


General Takeaways:

  • Promoting reading is an equity issue.  Providing materials for reading is also an equity issue.      
  • Future research needs to separate the ABE and ESL populations.  While the ABE/ESL populations may share reading levels, their attitudes toward learning to read are vastly different.
  • Involving this student population in our research generated interest, excitement, and engagement. Recognizing their efforts helped them to label themselves as readers and "real" college students.  
  • When ABE/ESL students increase their reading fluency, they will matriculate to credit-bearing classes more effectively.
  • Overall great experience for everyone involved, including the students.  The students loved their Read Posters!

Library Specific Takeaways:

  • We need to find money to support the reading needs of the ABE/ESL population.  This is an equity issue!  Are we serving or ignoring an already marginalized, vulnerable population?
  • Do we include sparking the joy of reading in our instruction, collection development, or our mission?  Or have we set that aside to meet the ever-present demands for materials for accreditation?  Is promoting reading still part of our mission?  
  • Do we need to reconsider our collection model - books for the classroom - bookmobile model?
  • Do we understand how faculty are using our materials for instruction?  Our discipline needs to spend more time with, and around discipline faculty to learn what faculty need, what they think, how we can work together more effectively.

Moving Forward

  • Our plans for fall - Faculty like the assignments that we created and plan to continue to use them.
  • Genre stickers on the collections - We have added genre stickers to each of the graded readers.
  • Information Literacy Visits to off-campus sites - Faculty expressed the desire for students to connect to the Library by getting to know the Librarians.  This will create a sense of welcome, approachability, and connection to the Library and to the main campus.
  • Audio enhancements for books - Some faculty were interested in this - some weren't.
  • Sustainability of the collection - One-time monies from ABE/ESL and the Library.
  • ABE/ESL LibGuides - Requested
  • Faculty Forum - We plan to share our work with our Campus and potentially more.
  • Considering writing an article - WAESOL, other conferences, Extensive Reading Foundation Website, Journal of Extensive Reading.