Updated Implementation Guide for CGEA

The latest Certificates in General Education for Adults (CGEA) curriculum was accredited in 2013 and a free Implementation Guide is now available.

I found the new guide to be quite an improvement on the previous version. The focus is mainly on showing users how to integrate units in various ways so students get the chance to use authentic texts.  Case studies are used to demonstrate what the writers mean by this.

I liked the Case Study that showed how a class organised  a fund raiser morning tea as an official part of  the Cancer Council’s Australia’s Biggest Morning tea.

CGEA Imp Guide pic for Post

This offered a reasonably simple class activity that could provide assessment opportunities for a number of units.

Case study 3 is based on assessment activities for the Initial CGEA course based around the local library. The writers used this activity to show how to record the integrated mapping of four units focusing on Reading and Numeracy. There is also a recording sheet to allow evidence to be captured while watching a student interact with online information.  You will need to do some adaptation as the online resources suggested are Victorian. This year’s WAALC conference will have a session on how Western Australian libraries are now accessible 24/7 which will offer ideas on how to adapt the activity for higher level students.

I will be using the new Guide in this year’s Introduction to the CGEA Part 1 workshops for teachers new to CGEA.  But even if you are a more experienced user of the CGEA courses, you might want a quick browse through this Guide to see what it has to offer you.

Cheryl Wiltshire
Department of Training and Workforce Development

A new social media Community of Practice for LLN/Foundation Skills) Practitioners

As some of you will know I am involved as a Foundation Skills Champion with the National Foundation Skills Strategy Project. Our small Community of Practice made up of the Champions is working to extend our network to ALL Foundation Skills (LLN/Employability Skills) practitioners throughout Australia, so that we form a National Network (Community of Practice). This will give us wider opportunities to connect and share and a greater voice to participate in discussion. One of the strategies we are adopting is the use of social media for online networking. We are initially using Facebook and also Twitter.

PLEASE JOIN US – the more people who join and participate the more vibrant and sustainable our network will be!

FS Soc Network1

Through Facebook and Twitter we can:

  • Use posts and comments to discuss ideas and issues in Foundation Skills delivery
  • Seek feedback and reflect on activities
  • Share and find resources, links and information about Foundation Skills
  • Ask those “just-in-time” questions when we need help with ideas, activities, resources
  • Have real time discussions (using Twitter chats) on “hot topics” that can be archived for later access
  • Gain the experience to meet our students on their own “home” e-ground

If you are already on Facebook then visit and join the FS Teach Group: or type http://bit.ly/FSTeachGroup

If you are already on Twitter then follow me @JoHart and tweet me with the #tag #FSTeach

If you are not yet on Facebook and/or Twitter visit Online social networks for PD and networking or type http://bit.ly/SocNetForPD for info on signing up to either or both and getting started.

Please also download our “Building on our Foundations” flyer and share with colleagues to encourage them to join.

Hope to “see” you on Facebook and Twitter very soon. 🙂



Conferences in the next few months

NEXT WEEK Australian Workplace Practitioners’ Network (AWPN) Conference 2015 Refresh, Rebrand, Re-engage: Foundation Skills at Work to be held 18-20 March 2015

WA Adult Literacy Council 2015 State Conference at Central Institute of Technology on 16th and 17th April, 2015. The conference is titled Great Expectations: literacy, the individual and the economy.

The 25th biennial conference Australian Association of Mathematics Teachers (AAMT) will be held 6–8 July 2015 in Adelaide, SA. The theme is “Mathematics: Learn, Lead, Link”

ACER Research Conference 2015 – Learning assessments: Designing the future. 16-18 August, Crown, Southbank, Melbourne
A conference to connect  teachers, education leaders and policy makers with the latest assessment research to inform teaching and learning.

ACAL National conference 2015 – Resilience, Risk, Preservation – held held at the Adelaide Zoo in  Adelaide on 24th and 25th September 2015.


Professional learning coming up in WA

Introduction to Certificates in General Education for Adults (CGEA)

This induction program for new CGEA teachers is scheduled on Wednesdays in 2015 (11 March and 12 August).

Teach Me Grammar 2015

A new program for Teach Me Grammar will start in July. If you are interested in Teach Me Grammar, checkout the GoogleGroup or visit Teach Me Grammar Program 2015 to get more information and the application form of the previous program.

Collaborative numeracy: working together to build numeracy skills in adults

Collaborative numeracy: working together to build numeracy skills in adults is a program of  professional development for teaching numeracy to adults and young people in vocational training  and other adult learning contexts.

Program starts 26th February 2015. Any late applications as soon as possible please. Contact Cheryl.Wiltshire@dtwd.wa.gov.au 

CAVSS Local Leaders Network Project

This is an ALaN Network project funded by the WA Department of Training and Workforce Development and being carried out by C Y O’Connor Institute.

The aim of the project is to create an online “course” providing information and scenarios for decision making about using CAVSS, promoting greater understanding of the CAVSS Business Rules for all managers.

Two on-line surveys, one for CAVSS managers and one for CAVSS lecturers, have been conducted and responses analysed. Responses to these survey have helped us identify the skills and knowledge that are key to undertaking the CAVSS Manager’s job

The surveys show areas of concern that can be grouped under three main issues:

  • Expecting that CAVSS will solve every problem
  • Lack of systematic process to ensure that team-teaching model is set up and then monitored
  • Failure to understand and value the skills and knowledge profile of the literacy/numeracy teacher.

CAVSS Business Rules that are most difficult to comply with are graphed below. Rule 13, Selecting teachers to deliver CAVSS, being the most difficult.

Bus Rules Graph

The surveys show we need to highlight the importance of having the right teacher… not just another vocational lecturer.

The development of the on-line course is well underway and will be trialled before launching. We are creating the course with Articulate Storyline – a rapid e-learning development tool.


With this tool we can create interactive content using quizzes and scenarios as well as a variety of images, video, text and audio.

Lina Zampichelli



Digital literacy for “offline” students – Part 1

Worried about how to incorporate digital literacy in your literacy course if your students have no, or limited, Internet access? There are downloadable tools that you can use to help you with this. Most need to be installed on the computers your students use although some may be run from a USB memory stick or a CD/DVD. This article focuses on PowerPoint as a tool for creating digital texts.

The maths resource “Language of shape” on this blog page, was developed in PowerPoint. It is a digital text containing internal hyperlinks and audio so that it has a degree of interactivity. The links below connect to short “how to” tutorials on creating different interactive texts using PowerPoint:

Some ideas for student tasks that create digital texts using PowerPoint advanced features.

Wordle ideas for Ppt projects

There are a number of other tools that may be used to create digital texts without being connected to the Internet, however PowerPoint is probably the most easily available in most teaching contexts.

Jo Hart

The CAVSS Experience

A Snapshot from a CAVSS Lecturer.

Being a CAVSS (Course in Applied Vocational Study Skills) lecturer over the previous two years has been a very rewarding experience. Understanding the need for such support is essential. Many students for whatever reason, have literacy and numeracy issues that were not addressed at school. This often leads to students feeling despondent and unsure of their capabilities. As a school teacher previously, it is easy to recognize how this feeling of low self-esteem can manifest itself in certain behavior in a learning environment.

For these reasons, I found forming a relationship with the students over an extended period of time was essential. Initially you are seen to be just another lecturer working through the competencies to be achieved. However, if you can set up a relationship that exists in and out of the classroom and workshop, your chances of success are that much greater. A sense of humour and good listening skills will go a long way to help yourself and students achieve success.

I have found that working with students and lecturers over an extended period allows relationships and camaraderie to build up. Moving in and out of classrooms and workshops on a regular basis, irrespective of CAVSS support, also allows students and fellow lecturers incidental support and for students to ask for individual assistance in various areas that they may be reluctant to raise in a more formal environment.

Being a CAVSS lecturer also gives you the opportunity to meet a wide and diverse range of students and staff across a range of portfolios throughout the college. The tag-teaching role ensures the literacy and numeracy support delivered is very relevant to all VET training activities and is seen as “normal” delivery. A thoroughly fun and rewarding experience.

Tony Cogan – CAVSS Lecturer at Durack Institute of Technology, Geraldton

via Helen Smith (CAVSS Local Leaders Network))

Literacy Research Matters

Looking for that critical research report, journal article or conference paper?

The VOCED & ALADIN online databases may help you.

VOCED is a free international research database from NCVER relating to workforce needs, skills development, and social inclusion. It encompasses vocational education and training (VET), higher education, adult and community education, informal learning, and VET in Schools. International in scope the database contains over 63,000 English language records, many with links to full text documents. You can easily search by keyword or ‘Browse’ by author, title, journal or subject.

Adult Learning Documentation and Information Network (ALADIN) , is an initiative of the UNESCO Institute for Lifelong Learning. It was created to support networking and capacity building between documentation centres and libraries in the area of adult learning and literacy. Today it comprises of 96 documentation centres in 47 countries in all regions of the world, from complex university libraries and research units, to small NGO resource centres and some virtual collections. The National Centre for Vocational Education Research (NCVER) is an ALADIN member organisation.

KEEP UP TO DATE: New research is collated into a bi-monthly ALADIN Online Alert located on the ALADIN News webpage – no ‘subscription’ or signup required. Find out about recent online and full-text information in the areas of adult learning, adult literacy, lifelong learning and technical and vocational education and training (TVET).

Jane Jones

Call for Presenters WA Adult Literacy Council Conference 2015

WAALC 2015 Conference

You are reminded that WAALC is now seeking Expressions of Interest from you to present at the conference http://www.waalc.org.au/  to be held at Central Institute of Technology • 16-17 April, 2015

Please give some thought to how you can contribute. We encourage practitioners who have never presented at a conference to come and share their ideas.This is a good professional development activity. WAALC Executive members will provide support and advice to any ‘novice’ presenters.

The submission process closes on 15 December.

Margaret McHugh

More information about the conference

WAALC 2015 Conference – call for papers Submit your proposal online or download a submission form from the same page. Get the Conference details for more information.



Keynote speaker at the WAALC Conference

2015 WAALC State Conference

Keynote Speaker – Michelle Circelli NCVER

Michelle Circelli, a member of NCVER’s Research Management Branch, manages commissioned research projects funded under the National VET Research Program. Michelle also undertakes research and consultancy projects for NCVER and has a particular interest in adult literacy and numeracy. Michelle was the 2013 Fulbright Professional Scholar in Vocational Education and Training and spent four months in the United States at the end of 2013 undertaking research into measuring success of adult literacy and numeracy programs with the Californian Community Colleges Chancellor’s Office and the federal Office of Career, Technical and Adult Education (formerly the Office of Vocational and Adult Education).

Michelle’s keynote address will discuss the work undertaken during her Fulbright Scholarship in late 2013, highlighting the good, the bad and the ugly of particular approaches used in the United States to measure outcomes from adult literacy and numeracy programs. In recent years in Australia there has been increasing investment in programs and a greater acknowledgment of the importance of literacy and numeracy for social and economic participation. However, we know little about the returns on this investment for funders and providers, or outcomes for learners – what works for whom and why? How do we know if a program is successful? Indeed what ‘outcomes’‚ are we measuring to determine success?

Margaret McHugh