Why do some students struggle to acquire a second language? What can educators do to optimize these students’ learning experience? This two-part workshop will explore the roots of language learning difficulties and effective classroom practices that support language learning for all students. 

Please note: This course will take place in Blackboard where you will find all virtual session information, course materials, and additional resources. You cannot access the online course from the SABES website. You will receive a separate email one to two days before the course begins with instructions on how to access the Zoom session. If you do not receive these instructions, please check your Spam folder and/or send an email to nruskin@edc.org


    This professional development activity/course is designed for:

  • ESOL teachers of learners at all language proficiency levels.

This two-part workshop will present a framework for understanding second-language learning difficulties in cognitive terms such as memory, attention, and language processing. The sessions will include simulations designed to give instructors insights into and empathy for students with second-language learning difficulties and challenges. The presenter will explain and demonstrate strategies for effective second-language instruction based on research, literature review, and nearly 40 years of classroom practice developed in Landmark College’s highly successful foreign language programs. She will also provide suggestions for structuring adult ESOL programs to address the needs of all learners. Between the two sessions, participants will have a chance to implement strategies and report on their reflections, observations, and questions via an online discussion board. 

Follow-up coaching is available through the SABES ESOL PD Center to support you in integrating new tools and strategies into your teaching practice. To arrange a coach, please contact the PD Center Director, Dori McCormack, at dmccormack@edc.org

    Learning Objectives

    Upon completion of this professional development activity/course, you will be able to:

  • Explain the role that attention, memory, and language play in adult students’ acquisition of second languages
  • Identify [PSG: common] characteristics of second language students who are likely to experience difficulties due to learning disabilities
  • Describe principles, approaches, and specific activities that facilitate second-language learning for adults with learning disabilities
  • Create a toolkit for supporting students with learning disabilities in your courses
Presenter(s) / Facilitator(s)
03/16/2023 - 10:00 am to 03/16/2023 - 11:30 am
03/31/2023 - 10:00 am to 03/31/2023 - 11:30 am

United States

PD Center
SABES English for Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL) Curriculum & Instruction PD Team
Topic Area
ADEI Professional Growth
ESOL/English Learners
Learning Disabilities / Differences