The Forum section of the current Adult Literacy Education: The International Journal of Literacy, Language, and Numeracy focused on research and how it is used and can be used better in all aspects of the adult education field.
The first two responses covered the relationship between research and policy and research and the field of adult education. The final article in the Forum offers a look at how a state-level resource center shifted how it used research to create professional development resources.
Read an excerpt from “Educational Research and Practice: A State-Level Professional Development Perspective” co-authored by Elizabeth Severson-Irby and Kate Rolander of Virginia Commonwealth University:
As a PD center, we aim to support adult educators in Virginia with evidence-based instructional strategies and program design. Research provides a foundation for us, as PD providers, as we consistently change course to support new ways of teaching and learning. In addition to using research to guide the what of AE, there is an increased call for research that guides the how of AE, especially research that provides potential keys to harnessing learning, motivation, and persistence, and to expanding engagement through inclusive learning strategies. As PD providers, we work to keep pace with current research to provide the field with revised or new teaching methods, such as inclusive practices and virtual instruction. Additionally, we actively and intentionally seek input from the field to learn about what kinds of practices are working in our instructors’ classrooms and which are not. Following that input, we direct our PD development toward research on practices important to them, and recently, these have been practices that support motivation, socioemotional learning, and culturally responsive education.