ATESL gratefully acknowledges the support of Alberta Employment and Immigration and Citizenship and Immigration Canada in the development and publishing of this document.

ATESL Adult ESL Curriculum Framework Project
Manager: Justine Light

ATESL Adult ESL Curriculum Framework written by Wendy Chambers, Sara Gnida, Wendy Ilott, Cindy Messaros, and Kathy Dawson

Writer: Sara Gnida
Project Manager: Justine Light
© Copyright 2009 by Alberta Teachers of English as a Second Language (ATESL)

ATESL would like to acknowledge the contribution of TESOL Standards for Adult Education ESL Programs (2003) throughout this document.

ATESL thanks the following people who gave generously of their time and expertise by participating in focus group interviews, providing input on the ATESL website, and/or providing feedback on drafts of the document:

Lorene Anderson
Carol Aubee Girard
Susan Badger
Sumana Barua
Pat Boehme
Chrystal Blume
Anne Capune
Anna DeLuca
Leni Deisman
Tracey Derwing
Carolyn Dieleman
Hailey Gale
Isabel Gibbins
Myrna Glenn
David Graham
Erma Guinto
Diane Hardy
Jenine Hawrelyk
Fiona Hayes
Katalin Hegedus
Tara Holmes
Ron Horton
Mimi Hui
Penny Hui
Melissa Hunt
Hana Imai
Elsie Johnson
Ruth Jordan
Cynthia Lambertson –
Liz Karra
Christine Land
Roberta Lawlor
Patti Lefebvre
Laura Lindsay
Amy Meckelborg
Cindy Messaros
Valerie Millar
Mandy Neilsen
Todd Odgers
Susan Oguchi
Audrey Olson
Donna Paskall
Heather Plaizier
Leila Ranta
Sheri Rhodes
Ian Rogers
Hetty Roesingh
Marian Rossiter
Virginia Sauve
Shalla Shaharyan
Judy Silitto
Skipp Symes
Gayle Taylor


We would like to especially thank Dr. Marian Rossiter for her guidance at the beginning of the project and the countless hours she contributed providing feedback on the many drafts of the document.



The Alberta Teachers of English as a Second Language (ATESL) is a professional organization that promotes the highest standards of teaching and English language program provision for all learners in Alberta whose first language is other than English.

We do this by:

• encouraging and providing professional development opportunities that are consistent with generally accepted principles of adult learning and with currently understood principles of second language learning and teaching

• liaising with other organizations, local, provincial, national, and international, engaged in education

• creating awareness about immigration, settlement of immigrants, and English language learning by communicating with government, business, and the general public

• encouraging awareness of issues of accountability and program standards by communicating with English language program providers and learners

• encouraging the highest standards of teacher preparation and performance by administering an ESL teacher accreditation process

• working collaboratively with government to develop policies and procedures which govern the provision of English language programs and related services for immigrants to Canada
• encouraging and supporting the participation of learners in the decision‐making processes that determine their educational choices