Are you an educator who works with adult learners? Are you interested in discovering new, learner-centered approaches, effective communication strategies, and helpful resources for further professional development?

Consider the City’s Adult Education Pathways Program. It’s designed to equip adult education professionals with the basic tools and knowledge needed to advance adult education.

What is the Adult Education Pathway Program?

The Pathway Program is a free training system that teaches the fundamentals of working with adult learners. It was developed by the City of Philadelphia, Adult Education, in partnership with the Community College of Philadelphia and the Pennsylvania Department of Education.

What pathways are available?

Currently, there are four pathways to choose from:

  • Adult Basic Education (ABE) – teaching people how to read, write and do arithmetic
  • Digital Skills (DS) – teaching people how to use a computer and software programs
  • English for Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL) – teaching people English
  • High School Equivalency (HSE) – preparing people for the GED or other high school equivalency diploma

Who is the Pathway Program for?

While available to everyone, we believe the Pathway Program will be especially helpful for the following:

  • Instructors with less than three years of teaching experience in their chosen content area
  • Instructors making the switch from K-12 and/or higher education
  • Instructors who want to explore new pathways in adult education
  • Former learners who have completed their ABE, DS, ESOL, and HSE courses and want to become instructors themselves
  • Volunteers who want to work as instructors
  • College graduates who want to teach
  • Program administrators who want to expand their knowledge of lesson planning and teaching
  • People looking to change careers
  • Any instructor wanting to review “the basics” or formalize their qualifications

What are the goals of the Pathway Program?

The Pathway Program strives to achieve five core objectives: equip new instructors with the necessary skills and knowledge to work with adult learners, promote innovative teaching practices, foster a supportive learning environment, improve learner outcomes, and improve the overall quality of adult education in Philadelphia.

Is there a registration deadline?

Yes! The Pathway Program operates on a cohort model. If you register after a particular deadline, you will be enrolled in the following cohort.

These are the upcoming deadlines for enrollment:

Cohort Dates Enrollment Deadline
Spring 2024 April 1 – June 30, 2024 May 10
Summer 2024 July 1 – September 29, 2024 July 12
Fall 2024 October 1 – December 29, 2024 October 11
Winter 2025 January 6 – March 30, 2025 January 17

Please note that you can still register for a cohort while programs are in session due to the self-paced nature of the Pathways program. Register today!

Questions? Contact Gretchen Spencer ( or Charles Heil (