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September 1, 2013

Inside Language - La langue en coulisse


From the Executive Director

I am happy to report that the Centre’s projects are going well. You will find details in this issue of Inside Language.

The main changes that have taken place at the Centre in the three months since our last newsletter in June are governance- and staffing-related.

Two members of the Board completed their term in June: Francine Spielmann and Myra Thorkelson. They were replaced by Ann McGee and Tanis Sawkins. Soon after the June Board meetings France Vachon resigned her position on the Board and was replaced by Grainne O’Donnell.

On the staffing side, there have also been important changes. Rana Ashkar joined the CLB program while on the NCLC side Isabelle Champagne left the Centre. Catherine Rousseau and Marie Kagaju recently joined our team.

We are looking forward to a busy fall and winter.

François Bélisle

Public Holidays 
Please note that our offices will be closed September 2nd for Labour Day, October 14th for Thanksgiving and November 11th for Remembrance Day.

Jours fériés 
Veuillez noter que nos bureaux seront fermés le 2 septembre pour la Fête du Travail, le 14 octobre pour l’Action de grâce et le 11 novembre pour le Jour du Souvenir.


Please contact us at [email protected] in order to subscribe to our newsletter and stay up to date on all of CCLB’s activities.

Veuillez communiquer avec nous à [email protected] afin de souscrire à notre bulletin et de vous informer des activités du CNCLC.

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Due to recent changes in federal government policy, in most parts of Canada CLBPT assessor training and calibration are now offered as fee-for-service activity. Two provinces are providing funds for training this year: Manitoba and Ontario. In recent months, with Ontario’s Ministry of Citizenship and Immigration (MCI), CCLB held one CLBPT training session in Toronto. Fee-for-service sessions were requested and are being set up in BC and Saskatchewan.  The summer months also provided CCLB with the opportunity to review, verify and update its National Registry of CLBPT Assessors by connecting with assessment sites across Canada.  This update provided CCLB the opportunity to connect with sites regarding their needs for assessor calibration. With the introduction of CLARS (Coordinated Language Assessment and Referral System), CCLB is working with MCI regarding needs for calibration of CLBPT assessors in Ontario over the next year.  Once CLARS has been implemented, dates for calibration sessions will be set. Sites interested in setting up fee-for-service CLBPT training or calibration sessions in the fall are welcome to contact Krista Walsh-Murray at [email protected]  

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Orientation for the Revised CLB and Support Kit for Assessors

With most assessors already trained on the revised CLB and Support Kit, the Centre spent the summer months creating a database outlining all the assessors trained across Canada and reviewing participant feedback. With funding from the Ontario Ministry of Citizenship & Immigration (MCI), CCLB plans to offer an additional session during fall 2013 for assessors in Ontario who were unable to attend the sessions offered in 2012, most likely at the Ontario annual assessor forum.  Sites will be contacted in the coming months as information regarding this session is finalized.

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PBLA Training and Support

With funding from Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC), CCLB  has started setting up the first phase of a  three-year project intended to introduce Portfolio-Based Language Assessment (PBLA) as a standard feature of LINC and, eventually, CLIC programming.  The project will build on the insights and effective strategies of the recent model of training and support field-tested with PBLA Lead Teachers in Ottawa, Edmonton and New Brunswick. Project Leads on this project are Tara Holmes and Joanne Pettis, who initiated and launched the PBLA pilots with CIC and the Ministry of Citizenship & Immigration (MCI) of Ontario. They will be Lead Coaches and provide oversight of the day-to-day implementation with CCLB staff. The model being used for the national implementation is a three-tiered wedding cake model of training, mentoring and support:  (1) CCLB Regional Coaches will be trained, mentored and supported on PBLA to prepare and hone their skill sets; (2) They will train, mentor and support  a number of Lead Teachers from Service Provider Organizations;  (3)  Lead Teachers  will then train, mentor and  support Classroom Teachers within their program. CCLB is working with CIC to coordinate a phased-in rollout of PBLA in most parts of Canada by 2016.

Currently, CCLB is in the process of selecting the group of Regional Coaches that have CLB expertise  and experience in teaching and mentoring, and who replied to a national call for applications. CCLB is pleased to be able to work with CIC to help foster a community of practice for portfolio-based assessments and to provide teachers delivering ESL/EAL with new tools and processes that are of great benefit to learners and to teachers.


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WLA Training for CLARS Assessment Centres

With CLARS rolling out throughout Ontario, the Workplace Language Assessment (WLA) training will be underway in the near future for a select number of Ontario assessors working in CLARS Centres. The WLA is a tool designed to assess English language proficiency at Canadian Language Benchmarks (CLB) 7 to 10 for placement into workplace-training programs or bridging programs. It is MCI’s goal that there be at least one assessor at each CLARS centre capable of administering the WLA, knowing that in some communities there may be several CLARS assessors certified to administer the assessment, depending on critical mass expected for those centres. 


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TESL Ontario

CCLB has been funded by the Ministry of Citizenship and Immigration Ontario (MCI) to present a variety of workshops at the TESL Ontario Conference in Toronto, October 24-26, 2013. ESL teachers will be offered a selection of workshops for teachers working in adult non-credit language programs.

Please refer to the TESL Ontario conference brochure or website: on how to register for these workshops. Don’t forget to visit us at the CCLB booth at the conference expo to hear what’s new and view some of our materials. We look forward to seeing you there!


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Orientation for the Revised CLB and the CLB Support Kit for Instructors

MCI Funded Train-the-Trainer Orientation on the revised CLB
Training funded by the province of Ontario’s Ministry of Citizenship and Immigration (MCI) continues for teachers teaching ESL in school board settings. Some school boards held their internal training sessions this past summer and others are planning on holding the CLB session at their PD days this fall. To date 636 ESL teachers have been trained on the revised CLB.

Practitioners may find the revised CLB, the Support Kit and the exemplars on

British Columbia
Training sessions for British Columbia ELSA Net instructors on the revised CLB and Support Kit were successfully completed this summer. ELSA Net delivered 5 sessions in total. Feedback was very positive as teachers gained more information about the revisions and how to use the Support Kit for classroom planning and assessment. CCLB wishes to thank the following trainers for their dedication to the successful delivery of training workshops: Colleen Rogan, Lisa Herrera, Kathryn Rockwell, Diana Ospina and Ryan Drew.


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Benchmarking the Language Demands of Audiology and Speech-Language Pathology

CCLB has been retained by the Canadian Alliance of Audiology and Speech-Language Pathology Regulators (CAASPR) to benchmark the English and French language demands of audiology and speech-language pathology using the Canadian Language Benchmarks (CLB) and the Niveaux de compétence linguistique canadiens (NCLC).

Site visits have almost been completed by a team of CLB/NCLC experts shadowing Audiologists and Speech Language Pathologists across Canada in various settings, such as hospital, clinic, school and private practice. The data include language samples for all four skills: speaking, listening, reading and writing.  This past spring and summer experts visited and conducted site observations with 28 Speech Language Pathologists and 27 Audiologists. The data is currently being analyzed and validation of benchmark levels will be done in the fall. CCLB will be hosting 5 focus groups with professionals in the field to discuss the findings and gather feedback. If you wish to learn more about the project please contact [email protected].


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The Milestones test development project has been in full swing over these past few months. Several CCLB staff attended a full week’s training on automated test administration processes which will be instrumental for ongoing piloting of the test in the future. Requests for sites across Canada interested in participating in the current reading and writing pilots were sent in early spring and met with a favorable response. To date, both reading and writing pilot sessions have taken place in St. John's (NL), Ottawa (ON), Toronto (ON) and Edmonton (AB) at various site locations.   Fall pilot sessions are now in the process of being set up across Canada.  If your site is interested in participating, please contact Krista Walsh-Murray at [email protected].

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Message du directeur général

Je suis heureux de vous informer que les projets du Centre vont bon train.  Vous trouverez les détails dans ce numéro de La langue en coulisse.

Les principaux changements qui ont eu lieu au Centre au cours des trois mois qui ont suivi notre dernier bulletin ont trait à la gouvernance et au personnel du Centre.

En juin, deux membres du Conseil d’administration on terminé leur mandat : Francine Spielmann et Myra Thorkelson.  Elles ont été remplacées par Ann McGee et Tanis Sawkins. Peu de temps après le rencontre du Conseil, France Vachon a démissionné de son poste et a été remplacée par Grainne O’Donnell.

Du côté du personnel il y a également eu des changements importants. Rana Ashkar s’est jointe au programme CLB tandis que du côté des NCLC Isabelle Champagne a quitté. Catherine Rousseau et Marie Kagaju viennent de se joindre à notre équipe.

L’automne et l’hiver s’annoncent occupés.

François Bélisle

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NCLC : Trousse de soutien

Le CNCLC a terminé la Trousse de soutien qui a été créée pour accompagner la plus récente version des NCLC. La trousse sert de toile de fond à la formation sur les NCLC destinée aux administrateurs et enseignants du programme de français langue seconde (FLS) pour adultes ne donnant pas droit à des crédits offert par le ministère des Affaires civiques et de l’Immigration de l’Ontario.

La trousse contient :

  • une vue d’ensemble des NCLC, y compris une présentation détaillée des NCLC révisés;
  • des modèles d’outils pour la planification et l’évaluation des programmes pouvant être adaptés à un usage individuel;
  • des sections sur l’intégration de la grammaire, de la prononciation, de la prosodie et de la pragmatique dans les programmes fondés sur les NCLC;
  • des sections sur l’utilisation des NCLC dans des contextes particuliers, y compris les cours à niveaux multiples, l’enseignement du FLS en milieu minoritaire, et la formation linguistique en milieu de travail;
  • des copies types pour la compréhension de l’oral et de l'écrit ainsi que l’expression orale et écrite pour chacun des 12 niveaux.

Des ateliers et webinaires de formation seront offerts cet automne aux enseignants du programme de FLS ainsi qu’aux formateurs du programme CLIC. Les fournisseurs de services linguistiques recevront bientôt l’invitation aux ateliers, qui auront lieu à Ottawa et dans la région de Toronto.

Des exemplaires de la Trousse de soutien seront distribués aux fournisseurs de services linguistiques. La trousse pourra également être téléchargée à partir du site Web du CNCLC.

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Le CNCLC a obtenu le financement nécessaire pour poursuivre ses activités dans le cadre du projet Les classes virtuelles et le support pédagogique seront donc maintenus jusqu’à la fin du mois de mars 2014. Les prochains mois nous permettront également de poursuivre l’amélioration de la plateforme et sa promotion auprès des nouveaux arrivants. De plus, dès le mois d’octobre prochain, un évaluateur itinérant ira à la rencontre de futurs participants qui n’ont pas accès à l’un des deux centres d’évaluations d’Ottawa et de Toronto. Nous pourrons ainsi mieux répondre aux besoins des clientèles à l’extérieur des grands centres et, par le fait même, augmenter le nombre de participants au

Nous vous invitons à visiter le portail du cours au

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Lignes directrices pour le programme de français langue seconde (FLS) pour adultes, ne donnant pas droit à des crédits

Le projet des Lignes directrices se déroule bien. Les équipes anglophone et francophone sont toujours en développement de contenu. Le design du gabarit interactif de planification est terminé et la firme multimédia responsable de la médiatisation du projet nous présentera le gabarit interactif au début de novembre. Une partie du contenu y sera téléversée et le gabarit sera ensuite présenté à des enseignants et administrateurs vers la mi-novembre afin d’obtenir leur rétroaction.

Les enseignants du FLS jouiront d’un outil dynamique qui non seulement les aidera à planifier leurs cours, mais leur permettra de mieux appliquer les NCLC et les CLB en salle de classe.

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Élaboration du test de rendement

À la suite de la préétude, l’équipe de rédacteurs, sous la supervision de Claude Laurin, a apporté les modifications nécessaires au test selon des principes psychométriques.

Le test a également été soumis à un comité consultatif sur les sensibilités culturelles afin de s’assurer que le contenu et les illustrations ne contiennent aucun préjugé. Il est important que le test respecte toutes les cultures et ne désavantage personne; par exemple, une question qui porterait sur un sujet inconnu ou qui demanderait la connaissance de vocabulaire spécialisé. Brenda Protheroe a dirigé le comité et a soumis des recommandations. Les membres du comité consultatif étaient des plus dynamiques et ont fourni une rétroaction très utile pendant les deux journées de réunion. 

La validation à grande échelle débutera en octobre. Les établissements qui offrent le CLIC ou des cours de FLS seront invités à participer à la prochaine étape du projet.

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