USCIS Adult Citizenship Education Program Development Guide: Building an Adult Citizenship Program

USCIS Adult Citizenship Education Program Development Guide: Building an Adult Citizenship Program
USCIS Adult Citizenship Education Program Development Guide: Building an Adult Citizenship Program
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The transition from immigrant to full-fledged citizen of the United States of America is a challenging and oft-times stressful journey. U.S. Citizen and Immigration Services, (USCIS) recognizes and fully supports new citizens with a comprehensive educational development program guide primarily written to support the development and training of individuals seeking to build such programs within their communities.

The guide focuses on the educational criteria to assist program developers at every stage in the design and implementation phases to create adult citizenship education programs. You will find chapters to help you with building a course syllabus for a citizenship preparation program, evaluation and testing to meet the USCIS content standards and foundation skills to include ESL beginning lessons designed to turn newcomers into productive, contributing American citizens.

And, in an age in which digital literacy has become an essential component to education, the USCIS has incorporated digital literacy through a web-based tool and also has an app available to be used with mobile devices.

The guide is designed primarily for those who seek to build adult citizenship educational programs, to help establish or enhance your program in fundraising, the development of staff, a physical presence and the tools needed to support lawful permanent residents, the community and nation.

Examples of key tools for professionals provided within the guide are:

  • USCIS Program Development Wheel outlining the program development and implementation stages
  • Sample Networking and Referral Tool showcases services that your program can offer
  • Sample Adult Citizenship Student Life Cycle features student enrollment process through your program to graduation and alumni
  • Sample Individualized Education Plan helps you guide students to achieve goals
  • Sample Lesson Plan Template facilitates USCIS content standards within your classroom(s)
Table of Contents

Introduction  1

Program Development Phase: Part One: Community Needs Assessment

Step 1: Conduct a Community Needs Assessment  2

Part Two: Programmatic Design Step 2:

Develop a Program Plan, Structure, and Objectives  2

Part Three: Initial Curriculum Development

Step 3: Develop a Textbook-Based Curriculum Using USCIS Content Standards  2

Step 4: Acquire Classroom Supplies and Supplemental Materials 2

Part Four: Funding and Partnerships

Step 5: Pursue and Gain Funding Sources  2

Step 6: Develop a Network of Referral and Support Agencies 2

Part Five: Staff Recruitment, Hiring, and Training

Step 7: Recruit and Hire Staff  2

Step 8: Recruit and Onboard Volunteers 2

Step 9: Orient and Train Staff and Volunteers 2

Part Six: Final Curriculum and Lesson Plan Development

Step 10: Use Course Curriculum to Develop Lesson Plans  2

Part Seven: Program Promotion and Student Recruitment

Step 11: Develop and Implement a Student Recruitment Strategy 2

Program Implementation Phase: Part Eight: Student Onboarding

Step 12: Provide Holistic Orientation to Promote Retention  2

Step 13: Conduct Student Screening, Intake, and Pre-Testing  2

Part Nine: Class Cycle Step 14: Start and Conduct Class(es)  2

Step 15: Conduct Post-Testing . 2

Part Ten: Program and Course Evaluations

Step 16: Employ Student Course Evaluations at the End of Each Class Cycle  2

Step 17: Employ Volunteer Program Evaluations at the End of Each Class Cycle 2

Part Eleven: Celebration

Step 18: Hold Staff and Volunteer Appreciation Events and Recognize Student Achievement 2

Part Twelve: Reflection and Ongoing Professional Development

Step 19: Reflect on Evaluation Data with Staff and Volunteers to Further Program Development  2

Step 20: Provide Ongoing Professional Development and Training Opportunities for Staff and Volunteers  2


Community based adult citizenship education program developers and organizers, legal counsellors, prospective teachers, ESL instructors, faith-based organizations, library programs, administrative support staff, program coordinator, volunteers, and ultimately, new citizens on the path to full community integration and citizenship.

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Homeland Security Dept., U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services
"Expanding ESL Civics and Citizenship Education in Your Communities" was the preliminary title for this book. That was incorrectly advertised and changed to the current title, "USCIS Adult Citizenship Education Program Development Guide".
Key Phrases:
  • M 677
  • Adult Citizenship
  • Citizenship
  • Naturalization
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