Design practical, hands-on activities for English learners to be successful within rigorous content instruction while exploring the academic language and literacy practices of the 21st century classroom.

Academic language is so much more than vocabulary. Please join us for this engaging two-day institute designed to increase understanding and provide practical resources regarding the instruction of academic language and literacy.

The institute will focus on the language acquisition of English learners at three levels: discourse, sentence, and word or phrase level. The focus will be on bridging from students’ home language(s), dialects and more conversational language to the classroom or text language that allows them to meet content and language acquisition standards in the classroom.

Based on a 21st century approach to literacy, participants will explore the academic language and literacy practices –– such as listening for the speaker’s point of view or justifying the answer to a math problem –– that students need to be successful within rigorous content instruction. Educators will also learn how to scaffold participation in these discipline-specific practices, such as creating a model of the planetary system or contrasting two different cultural versions of a story.

After defining academic language and literacy, participants will learn more about each level of language and how each level is measured in English language proficiency assessments, such as the WIDA ACCESS test. Participants will analyze classroom videos and texts at each of the levels of language. Facilitators will also draw upon CAL’s federally funded research on vocabulary acquisition and demonstrate methods for identifying and teaching high frequency, high-utility academic vocabulary.

Throughout the two days, activities that teachers can implement in the classroom will be modeled. Strategies are applicable to bilingual learners as well as students at intermediate and advanced proficiencies in English, including long term English learners.

The institute is designed for classroom teachers working with language learners in grades PreK-12. ESL, reading and other school specialists who work with classroom teachers, school administrators, and other educators will also benefit from this valuable professional development opportunity.  Collaborative teaching teams are especially encouraged to attend.


Self-Paced Content

  • Between March 3rd and 10th, 2022, participants will be expected to complete approximately 3 hours of self-paced work in CAL’s asynchronous Moodle platform.

March 3, 2022: 9:30am-12:30pm and 2:00-3:30pm EST

  • Identifying key principles for instructing English learners in content and language development classrooms
  • Defining academic language and literacy in the 21st century
  • Bridging from oral language to traditional literacy
  • Analyzing text and classroom interactions at the three levels of academic language: discourse, sentence, and word/phrase
  • Fostering a motivating learning environment and developing language awareness activities

March 10, 2022: 9:30am-12:30pm and 2:00-3:30pm EST

  • Strategically selecting vocabulary terms to meet individual instructional needs and content and language standards
  • Applying differentiated methods of instruction to teach various kinds of words
  • Using methods for explicit vocabulary instruction, including contextual and analytic instruction
  • Promoting oral language development and incidental word learning through the four modalities of language
  • Wrap-Up


  • Early bird registration by February 1, 2022: $735/person.
  • After February 1, 2022: $865/person. Send 2 people or more and pay $735 each.
  • Cost includes all training materials. Each participant receives a copy of CAL’s professional development workbook: Developing Academic Literacy and Language in the Content Areas and the companion video clips and unit plans.
  • Register early, as space is limited.

Questions? Email CAL with any questions you may have about our offerings.

Certificate of Completion

Participants will receive a CAL Certificate of Completion which may be used for continuing education credit.


To reserve your seat for this institute, please complete the online registration process. Please be aware that your seat at the workshop will only be confirmed once payment is received. If you are registering multiple participants, please have the name, title, school, and email addresses available before you begin the registration process. We encourage you to register as soon as possible as many workshops fill up quickly.

Before beginning the registration process, please determine your preferred method of payment (credit card, check, or purchase order). When paying by credit card using the online registration system, your seat will be immediately confirmed and you will receive a confirmation email upon successful completion of the transaction. CAL accepts American Express, Discover, MasterCard, and VISA. For registrations to be paid by purchase order or check, please note that your seat will be tentatively reserved until payment is received. Once the payment is received, you will receive a confirmation email. There will be a fee of $15.00 for each check returned as uncollectible. Purchase orders should be uploaded directly to the registration system or emailed to For payment by check, or to pay for purchase orders, please make the check payable to the Center for Applied Linguistics and mail to: Accounts Receivable, Center for Applied Linguistics, 4646 40th Street NW, Washington, DC 20016.

Cancellation Policy
Registrants: We encourage participants to let CAL know as soon as possible if you do not plan to attend the session. Participants may cancel their registration and receive a full refund up to three (3) weeks prior to the institute start date by sending an email to After that date, no refunds will be available. However, registrants may choose to receive the institute materials by mail, postpone their attendance to a future CAL Institute, or transfer the registration to another individual up to three (3) days prior to the course start date. Contact us to discuss your options.
CAL: CAL reserves the right to cancel an event due to low enrollment or for reasons beyond our control. If we exercise this right, we will refund any registration fees which you have paid in advance. In some instances, registrants may have the option to transfer their registration to the another event. CAL is not responsible for transportation and/or hotel costs incurred by registrant.

Fair Use of Materials
Individuals who have completed CAL trainings and workshops have permission from CAL to use materials in the course of providing professional development to educators in their school or school districts. These materials cannot be used to deliver fee-based services. Email CAL if you have questions about the use of CAL materials.

COVID-19 Contingencies Language for Additional to Professional Development (PD) Contracts
CAL’s travel policy states that there will no business travel through December 31, 2020. This policy will be reviewed for the 2021 calendar year with a decision by October 1, 2020. In the event of school closures, travel restrictions and/or a high incidence of COVID-19, the district/school will make every attempt to reschedule the equivalent hours of hours of PD in a combination of synchronous and asynchronous online sessions on dates/times that are mutually agreeable. CAL attests that the PD content will be the equivalent to the face-to-face sessions and also align to best practices for virtual instruction.
In the event that the PD cannot be rescheduled to a virtual delivery model, CAL’s cancellation policy applies.

If you have questions, please contact us via email at or call 202-362-0700, Monday-Friday, 9 am - 5 pm Eastern Time.