OVAE: Office of Vocational and Adult Education
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Work-based Education

Research and Evaluation | Noteworthy Practices | Additional Links

Workplace education programs focus on the literacy and basic skills training that workers need to gain new employment, retain present jobs, advance in their careers, or increase productivity. Curricula are developed by educators working with employers and employee groups to determine what reading, computation, speaking and reasoning skills are required to perform job tasks effectively. Successful efforts to institute workplace education programs require strong partnerships among educators, employers, and employees. Most workplace education programs throughout the United States have been established without direct Federal assistance. Large businesses and industries frequently establish their own programs. Small organizations may pool resources to establish centers where training designed for a particular type of industry can be offered.

Research and Evaluation

  • The Conference Board created ScorecardforSkills.com, with financial support from OVAE, to help organizations measure and demonstrate the relationship between their workplace education investments, including workplace basic skills, and measures of organizational performance.

  • Turning Skills into Profit: Economic Benefits of Workplace Education Programs [downloadable files] PDF (79.5K). Research project from The Conference Board on the economic benefits of improving literacy skills through workplace education programs.

Noteworthy Practices

  • Workforce Skills Certification System. Nationally validated system that develops and trains adult education practitioners in the use of Workforce Learning System and Employability Skills assessment processes produced by Comprehensive Adult Student Assessment System (CASAS).

  • Pennsylvania's Workforce Education Research Center (WERC) assists adult basic education providers in developing a system of services for employers and incumbent workers in order to integrate those services with Pennsylvania's workforce development system.

  • Success Stories in Workplace Basic Education for Small Business. Information about the importance of workplace education and examples of where programs have worked (from Canada).

  • Work-based Learning. OVAE-sponsored project that provides information, research, data, and tools to employers, unions, and adult educators for developing, implementing, and evaluating state-of-the-art workplace education programs.

Additional Links

  • "The Institute for Work and the Economy and DTI developed "Workplace Education Program Profiles in Adult Education" [downloadable files] MS WORD ((97K) (97K) to highlight six workplace education program models that are worthy of consideration or consultation for continuous improvement purposes.

  • Learning for Life: Workforce Adult Literacy. Texas website with information about literacy and specific resources for implementing workforce education programs.

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Last Modified: 12/02/2008