Research and Evidence-Based Practices provide background information, a rationale, and evidence to support decisions around ELA teaching, curriculum, and program design.

Adult Education Literacy Instruction: A Review of the Research (2010): The Executive Summary may prove especially useful, as well as Chapter 3—"List of Stronger Findings, Weaker Findings and Findings From Other Populations," which includes findings on teaching materials and strategies for the different areas of reading instruction.

Applying Research in Reading Instruction for Adults: First Steps for Teachers provides guidance on how to plan and deliver reading instruction. Research-backed strategies that have been proven to work are described in detail, with sample instructional activities "to make research principles concrete for readers."

Bridging Research and Practice: The Role of Diagnostic Assessment in Evidence-Based Reading Instruction (2007): This document "highlights key findings from the research on diagnostic assessment for adult learners and identifies some of the pilot participants’ experiences and reflections on implementing STAR in their programs and classrooms."

Improving Adult Literacy Instruction: Supporting Learning and Motivation (2012) is a 35-page booklet intended to present teachers with helpful information on principles of effective instruction, ways to motivate learner persistance, and promising technologies.

National Academies Press Research (2012) on improving adult literacy instruction in developing reading and writing, and supporting learning and motivation.

The Relationship of the Component Skills of Reading to IALS Performance: Tipping Points and Five Classes of Adult Literacy Learners (2007): Co-authored by our own John Strucker, this study aimed to "understand the relationship of the component skills of reading, such as word recognition, vocabulary, and spelling, to large-scale measures of literacy" using "real-world items such as advertisements, bus schedules, newspaper editorials, and product warranties."

Research-Based Writing Instruction: This TEAL Center Fact Sheet #1 "examines the research on writing instruction for youth and adults, with attention to those who struggle to learn," and offers ten recommended instructional strategies. It is based on the following research studies: Writing Next, What We Know and What We Still Need to Know, and Writing to Read.

Using the PIAAC Literacy Framework to Guide Instruction: An Introduction for Adult Educators (2017): PIACC is the Programme for the International Assessment of Adult Competencies.

What Is Evidence-Based Reading Instruction and How Do You Know It When You See It? (2012) reflects the experience of the Los Angeles Unified School District’s Division of Adult and Career Education as it implemented evidence-based reading instruction (EBRI).

Writing to Read: Evidence for How Writing Can Improve Reading (2010) identifies writing practices that research has found to be effective in increasing students reading skills and comprehension.


See Also the STAR Research Review page.

Topic Area
Curriculum Development
ESOL/English Learners
EBRI (Evidence-Based Reading Instruction)
STAR (STudent Achievement in Reading)
Media Type
Resource Type
Research/Evidence-Based Practice
PD Center
SABES English Language Arts Curriculum & Instruction PD Center