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About Words for Work
A scene from Words for Work

Words for Work is a quick-start multimedia approach to job training and language skill development for Latinos whose limited English impedes their access to jobs or hinders their ability to succeed in their current positions. The program is designed to magnify the benefits of learning language, because students also absorb workplace vocabulary and culture.

Words for Work prepares learners for jobs in the American workplace. Unlike lengthier academic approaches, this program provides practical familiarity with workplace vocabulary and culture in a proven quick-start format. Learners begin thinking like employees from the very start when they practice phrases about time sheets, benefits, co-workers, industry-specific concepts and workplace safety. The end result: learners are more effectively prepared for employment. Please click here for a profile of a typical Words for Work student.

Words for Work takes full advantage of the multimedia capabilities of the web, utilizing audio, video, graphics and text to create a highly interactive, multi-sensory educational environment. Latino students can "see themselves" in the characters that drive the on-line coursework. These characters are also Latino and work in the same fields that the students are studying. The characters present information, ask questions, and act out scenarios that model appropriate workplace behavior.

The high-level of interactivity coupled with an engaging, Latino-centric format have yielded high retention rates and strong literacy gains for our learners. (Learn more.)

Words for Work can be offered as facilitated or self-paced courses.

A scene from Words for Work
  • Facilitated - The facilitated course is designed to take 70 hours. Half of the time students work independently on computers and during the other half they work with a facilitator to reinforce concepts and practice English. A step-by-step guide, which includes customizable worksheets, offers guidance to either the seasoned ESL instructor or general facilitator.

  • Self-paced - Words for Work can also be offered as a self-paced course. Minimal keyboarding skills are required as the materials are driven by the simple use of the mouse. Instructions, in Spanish, will help students with their initial login and Spanish supports throughout the courses will provide additional assistance. Because students are trying to improve language skills, it is recommended that some sort of assistance be made available to minimize disruption to the students.

For more information about Words for Work, contact the Digital Learning Group using our online contact form or by phone at 410.750.7320.

The typical Words for Work Student …….

  • Is a young to middle-aged adult
  • Speaks Spanish at home
  • Watches both Spanish and English TV
  • May or may not be a high school graduate
  • Demonstrates weak communication/math skills
  • Has a spotted work history in low-wage/skill job
  • Lacks job search process skills
  • Is unfamiliar with the "rules" of the American workplace
  • Has little or no computer experience
  • Is a non-native, limited-English-proficient speaker
  • Lacks a concept of the career ladder
  • Has limited resume development and online application skills

The typical Words for Work graduate…….

  • Is job-interview ready
  • Possesses a comprehensive resume
  • Understands own skills and qualifications
  • Is prepared to earn a living wage
  • Knows and applies workplace vocabulary
  • Has improved English/math skill, group process skills and workplace content/cultural knowledge
  • Understands the career ladder
  • Is comfortable using a computer online

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