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Why do we have a certification program?

Accountability in the field of adult education extends from the individual classroom to state and national performance, meeting targets for student performance and goal attainment. The VAECP is designed to provide all Virginia programs and their staff with access to current developments in adult education instruction and program management in order to more consistently meet the needs of adult learners throughout the state. It provides Virginia adult educators with a unified vision of excellence and opportunities to share as we move forward in preparing our students for the learning and work challenges of the 21st century.

Who can participate in the Virginia Adult Educator Certification Program?

Any full- or part-time teacher, program manager, or support staff member who works in an adult education program that receives funds from the Virginia Department of Education, Office of Adult Education and Literacy (OAEL) may participate in the program.

If I am a licensed teacher in Virginia, will I get re-certification points for attending certification training?

In most cases, you will. It is, however, up to your local school division or the Virginia Department of Education, Division of Teacher Education and Licensure to approve activities earning relicensure points. More information can be found at the Virginia DOE’s web site

Why should I participate in the Virginia Adult Educator Certification Program?

The program provides adult educators with a standard platform of knowledge and skills. Sessions are designed to help you to bring current research and best practices into your program to help adults learn and develop workforce skills. A uniform system of certification not only sets the standard for program performance, it gives everyone equal access to professional development opportunities. In addition, professional development will contribute to future annual program performance report cards issued by OAEL.

Am I required to participate?

Everyone is strongly encouraged to take advantage of this opportunity for personal and professional growth. While participation is not required by the OAEL, it will meet professional development requirements of the Strategic Plan 2012-2017and be reflected on the programs’ performance report cards.

How will my participation be acknowledged?

Participants receive a certificate and a recognition pin after successfully completing the requirements of each of the three certification levels.

How long will it take to complete certification?

Program managers should complete certification for Levels One and Two within three years; instructors, within five years.

Can I take the workshops out of order, that is, Session Three before Session Two?

Because the sessions are scaffolded, building on previous learning and experience, you may not take the session workshops out of order. The online course option is being designed to cover all three sessions within a certification level over an eight-week period.

Will I get credit for the workshops I’ve already completed?

In most cases, you will not receive credit for trainings taken in the past.

What if I already have an Adult Education endorsement, Masters in Adult Education, or graduate level courses? Can I get credit for those accomplishments?

Individuals who have completed Levels I and II and have taken masters level adult literacy classes since 2006 may be credited with Level III ABE/GED Instructor Certification. The Certification Program complements university coursework by emphasizing the practical application of research and best practices in the contexts of Virginia and local programs. Educators with previous credentials and experience provide an invaluable resource within the VAECP professional learning community.

I teach ABE and ESOL. Which strand should I take?

You should complete the levels in the strands that will benefit you and your instruction the most.

Will all sessions be offered in my area?

We plan to offer sessions regionally during the year, but there is no guarantee that all sessions will be presented in your area. Please check the training calendar to see sessions and locations, as well as online options we have scheduled, and choose what best fits your personal professional development plan.

What counts as "an additional self-selected workshop" and how can I choose one?

In all strands of the Virginia Adult Educator Certification Program, Levels I and II consist of designated courses, which must be taken consecutively, as well as one additional extended learning opportunity, the Self-Selected ‘Workshop’. Look here for more information about selecting a Workshop.

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The Literacy Institute @ VCU  |  Contact Us  |  © 2012 VALRC. All rights reserved. Updated: 06-13-16
The VALRC, located at Virginia Commonwealth University (VCU School of Education), is funded primarily through the VA Department of Education.