University of Wisconsin–Madison
Enhancing communication, cultural understanding, and learning in our diverse multilingual work environment

Tutor Training

Cultural Linguist Services (CLS) is a member of ProLiteracy, a national adult-literacy organization.

As a CLS tutor, you can access 2 free online tutor trainings through ProLiteracy:

ESL Online Tutor Training

13 modules for tutors of adults learning English as a second or other language.

  1. Introduction to ESL
  2. Working with ESL Adult Learner
  3. Introduction to ESL Instruction
  4. The Lesson Plan
  5. Assessment, Goal Setting, and Evaluation
  6. Vocabulary
  7. Conversation
  8. Pronunciation
  9. Grammar
  10. Reading
  11. Writing
  12. Language Experience Approach
  13. Getting Started

Basic Literacy Online Tutor Training

12 modules for tutors of native English speakers improving basic literacy.

  1. Introduction to Literacy
  2. Working with Adult Learner
  3. Introduction to Literacy Instruction
  4. The Lesson Plan
  5. Assessment, Evaluation, and Goal Setting
  6. Alphabetic and Word Study
  7. Fluency
  8. Vocabulary
  9. Reading Comprehension
  10. Writing
  11. Language Experience Approach
  12. Getting Started

Modules help you prepare for success before you’re matched and grow your skills while you are actively tutoring.

For example, if you are an ESL tutor:

  • complete ESL Modules 1-6 and 13 before you start tutoring. (If you’ve tutored before or have a background in adult education, you might skip Modules 1-3.)
  • work through ESL Modules 7-12 to learn new skills and strategies you can use to continually improve as a tutor.

Get Started

Create Your Online Training Account

  1. Contact Jzong Thao at 608-263-2217 or for the CLS ProLiteracy member number
  2. Go to:
  3. Click “Create Account”
  4. Create an account with your email address and a password you create
  5. Add the CLS ProLiteracy Member ID to your profile
  6. Wait 1 hour
  7. Log back into your account
  8. Click the “Get Started” button on the tutor training banner
  9. Choose the “ProLiteracy Member Organization” box
  10. Click on the training you want (Ex: ESL Tutor Training Online Workshop)
  11. Click “Request”
  12. Click “Launch”
  13. Watch the optional orientation video

Sometimes, CLS offers in-person trainings on special topics. We will tell tutors about upcoming in-person trainings.

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