Evaluation of the Language Instruction for Newcomers to Canada (LINC) Program
Several lines of inquiry were used to evaluate the program: document review; a literature review; administrative data analysis; interviews with national, regional and local CIC officials; case studies of a random selection of LINC classes (which included analysis of relevant administrative and survey data, focus groups with learners and outcomes testing with a random selection of LINC learners); outcomes testing with a random selection of newcomers who did not take LINC. Several surveys were administered to key program stakeholders and participants: all LINC SPOs, a random sample of LINC instructors, a random sample of LINC learners, a random selection of newcomers who did not take LINC and a random sample of former LINC learners.
The evaluation compared the outcomes of LINC learners with a similar group of newcomers who have not taken LINC classes (the “comparison group”), using a quasi-experimental approach. The outcomes which relate to the objectives of learning English and learning about Canada were assessed through testing and a follow-up survey. To measure general English language proficiency at LINC program exit and thereby to observe possible gains attributable to LINC, the Canadian Language Benchmarks (CLB) standardized assessment tool was used.
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