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Adult Literacy and Essential Skills Research Institute

The Adult Literacy and Essential Skills Research Institute promotes and conducts critical inquiry, applied research and innovation in the field of foundational learning (adult literacy, basic education, upgrading and essential skills). Our work centers on research that is grounded in practice. We bring people together to collaborate on local and national projects and to share their knowledge and experience in research and practice.

We work with practitioners (instructors, tutors, assistants, specialists), learners, administrators and funders. We honour diversity by paying attention to people, places, cultures, languages and equitable access to learning. Guided by the following principles and areas of activities the Adult Literacy and Essential Skills Research Institute assists Bow Valley College in achieving its Foundational Learning Vision and Goals.


  • We listen a lot
    Identify needs in adult literacy education is the starting point for innovation and research.
  • We believe learners are experts of their own learning experience 
    Learners experience and knowledge guide our research priorities and activities.
  • We engage and support the Research in Practice approach 
    Research in Practice acknowledges the expertise of practitioners and commits to building research skills among    practitioners.
  • We create more impact by working together
    All projects are created in collaboration with adult literacy stakeholders.
  • We are committed to sharing knowledge and expertise
    Information is shared widely and learning events are created frequently. 

Areas of Research Activities

  • Knowledge Dissemination
    Provide and support pathways to disseminate knowledge gained through initiatives and projects.
  • Community Collaboration
    As a community member, we contribute to building community capacity for adult literacy.
  • Assessment & Evaluation
    Develop multiple forms of assessment tools and evaluation methods 'for, and of' learning.
  • Professional Development and Training
    Support professional development and training for practitioners.
  • Program Design
    Promote innovation in program development and delivery.

Bow Valley College Foundational Learning Goals

  • Support increasing access, reducing barriers and improving transitional pathways to increase participation rate in   foundational learning.
  • Increase application of theoretical knowledge in the foundational learning field.
  • Achieve continuous improvement in instruction, content and program design in foundational learning.
  • Increase the development of essential skills for further learning, employment and civic participation.

For further information on the Adult Literacy and Essential Skills Research Institute click the link below: