The Case for Collaboration: Aligning ES(O)L and Developmental Literacy to Increase Adult Immigrant Students’ College Access and Preparation

Fall 2023



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Author(s): Emily K. Suh, Texas State University

Adult English language instruction is the fastest growing segment of U.S. adult basic education population. Supporting adult emergent multilingual students through English as a Second Language or English for Speakers of Other Languages classes, referred to here as ES(O)L, and developmental literacy programs presents a “wicked problem” for many community colleges. This article compares literacy standards and instruction across adult ES(O)L and developmental literacy contexts in six Texas community college systems. Colleges held loosely shared organizational goals but lacked sufficient leadership, structure, and time for goal enactment. Through a systems theory lens, the article explores colleges’ potential to become learning organizations supporting adult multilingual students’ college transition.

ALE Journal Volume 5, Issue 3

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