If you are considering enrolling in classes at an adult-education center, you may be surprised to realize that many programs across the nation are well-developed and able to support adult learners of various backgrounds, skill levels, and needs. Whether you want to get your GED, are taking ESL classes, or need to enhance your career through professional development, there is likely an adult-education center near you that can help you achieve your goals. To make sure you are successful in your studies, it is important to thoroughly understand the types of support that the adult-education center you are attending offers. Besides attending an orientation and reading enrollment materials carefully, here are five things you should ask about at your center.
For many adults, one of the largest obstacles to enrolling in adult-education courses is balancing work, childcare, and classes. Because of this, many adult-education centers offer childcare or partner with childcare centers who offer discounts or extended hours to students. It is important that you express your childcare needs early during the enrollment process so you can get a spot in a childcare program and so your classes can be arranged around your childcare needs.
Some adult-education centers offer multiple classes of the same course throughout the day or week. For example, one class may meet in the morning and another in the evening, or one class may meet on Mondays and Wednesdays while another meets on Tuesdays and Thursdays. If your center runs multiple classes of your course at the same time, you should check ahead of time if you will be able to drop into another class if you miss one of your scheduled classes during the week. This can help you keep up with your coursework and successfully complete the course.
Self-paced courses are a good option for students who have solid study habits and a high motivational drive. They can be especially useful if they are offered completely online or with only a few in-person classes throughout the course. These courses will allow you to learn at your own pace and adjust your program to your schedule. However, it is important to note that many self-paced courses have strict deadlines for when you must complete your final examinations for the courses, so it is important for you to be able to create a plan and stick to it.
Personal Guidance Programs
Students who may not have strong study habits or have struggled with formal education in the past should look into a center that offers a strong personal guidance program. These centers will assign a guidance counselor to each student to help them make sure they are meeting their educational goals. If you enroll in this type of program, you may meet with your guidance counselor once each semester before you enroll in courses, or you may meet with your guidance counselor more regularly to discuss your study habits and any educational problems you are currently facing. A guidance counselor may direct you to additional resources the center has, such as assistance for students with learning disabilities or a peer-mentoring program.
Testing and Educational Planning
Almost all adult-educational centers offer in-depth testing before you enroll. This may include aptitude testing, career testing, and skills testing that will help you determine the best courses for you to meet your educational goals. After testing, you should meet with a counselor or complete an orientation. Either with your counselor or at orientation you should create a learning plan that includes specific goals for your education as well as the courses that will help you achieve your goals.
For more information, talk to a professional such as Pioneer Career & Technology Center.