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Getting Ready for College

Alternative Learning System

Posted by on Jul 23, 2012 in Alternative Education, Articles, Getting Ready for College | 190 comments

The Alternative Learning System in the Philippines, abbreviated as ALS, is a program by the Department of Education that seeks to help Out of School Youths, industry-based workers, people with disabilities, former inmates, rebels, members of cultural minorities, and other people who, for one reason or another, cannot afford to go through formal schooling. It was first launched in 1984 under the name Non-formal Education and was primarily focused on helping its students acquire technical skills that they can use to earn a living. After getting its name changed into Alternative Learning System in 2004, its focus widened to include literacy classes that are aimed at eventually granting elementary and high school diplomas to deserving students who were forced to drop out of primary and secondary school. Community Learning Centers ALS classes are conducted at Community Learning Centers (CLCs). Each city or municipality has a number of CLCs that  interested learners can go to. These CLCs can either be a public elementary or secondary school, a barangay hall, a room or building lent by a government agency or private company or organization, or any other vacant space where learners can gather together. Each CLC has an assigned teacher called an Instructional Manager. Depending on whether they’re teaching a literacy class or a livelihood program, instructional managers can either be a licensed teacher employed by the Department of Education or certified practitioners of a specific craft such as professional reflexologists or dressmakers. If you have the spare time and the necessary qualifications, you can also volunteer to teach for any of the two programs. ALS Accreditation and Equivalency Classes (ALS A&E) and Livelihood Programs Students who are interested in enrolling in an ALS class are encouraged to visit Community Learning Centers. Once there, they will be asked whether they want to attend the literacy class (ALS A&E) or the livelihood program. Students who want to take ALS A&E  will be given an oral and written test to assess their competency level. From the result of the test, applicants will be grouped with either the elementary or high school level. If the applicant has not attended any formal schooling before, they will be enrolled in the Basic Literacy Program where they will be taught basic reading and computing skills before moving them to more advanced classes. Classes are usually held everyday, although how many hours a day or how many days a week a student should show up for class depends on the Instructional Managers. If there are other responsibilities that keep students from attending classes, they are allowed to take home free modules that they can study wherever and whenever they want. At the end of these modules are questions and exercises that the students must answer in order to evaluate how much they understood the lesson. After they’re done with the modules, they are asked to return them to their instructional managers so they can correct them. Subjects of Study ALS A & E classes are divided into five categories called learning strands. These include Communication Skills (English and Filipino), Problem Solving and Critical Thinking (Science and Mathematics), Sustainable Use of Resources and Productivity,  Development of Self and A Sense of Community / Value of Collaboration, and Expanding One’s Own World Vision.   By integrating these five learning strands, ALS...

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Alternative Learning System Accreditation and Equivalency (ALS A & E) Test 2012

Posted by on Apr 13, 2012 in Alternative Education, Articles, Getting Ready for College | 119 comments

The Alternative Learning System Accreditation & Equivalency Test is given to individuals, preferably those who took ALS A&E classes, to acquire certificates that are equivalent to diplomas received by traditional elementary and high school graduates. You can learn about ALS in detail  on our posts: Alternative Learning System and the ALS FAQs. Below are some information for the 2012 ALS A& E Test: Registration Schedule: June 12-July 31, 2012 CLOSED Examination Schedule: October 07, 2012 – Regions IX, X, XI, XII, CARAGA, and ARMM October 14, 2012 – Regions V, VI, VII, VIII October 21, 2012 – Regions I, II, III, and CAR October 28, 2012 – Regions IV-A, IV-B, and NCR Registration Centers: Registration and Testing Centers for the Alternative Learning System Accreditation and Equivalency (ALS A & E) Test 2012 can be found on the table below. Please note that these are only Registration and Testing Centers that have been publicly announced. For locations not mentioned below, please contact the Bureau of Alternative Learning System for more information. RegionLocationRegistration and Testing Center Cordillera Administrative RegionBangued, AbraAbra High School Cordillera Administrative RegionBarangay Sipa, Sta. Marcela, Apayao Imelda National High School Cordillera Administrative RegionApayaoPedro Bunot Elementary School Cordillera Administrative RegionApayaoConner Central School Cordillera Administrative RegionBaguio CityQuezon Elementary School Cordillera Administrative RegionBenguetBenguet National High School Cordillera Administrative RegionBenguetLoo Buguias National High School Cordillera Administrative RegionIfugaoLagawe Central School Cordillera Administrative RegionKalingaTabuk National High School Cordillera Administrative RegionBontoc, Mt. Province.Mountain Province General Comprehensive High School National Capital RegionQuezon CitySan Francisco High School National Capital RegionQuezon CityDon A. Roces Sr. Science Technology High School National Capital RegionQuezon CityLagro High School National Capital RegionQuezon CityNew Era University National Capital RegionQuezon CityCamp Caringal Women's Dormitory (Extension Testing Center) National Capital RegionQuezon CityQuezon City Jail (Extension Testing Center) National Capital RegionManilaP. Gomez Elementary School National Capital RegionManila V. Mapa High School National Capital RegionManilaManila Youth and Reception Center National Capital RegionManilaManila City Jail (Male and Female Wards) National Capital RegionBayanan, Muntinlupa CityDivision ALS Center (Registration) National Capital RegionBayanan, Muntinlupa CityPedro E. Diaz High School National Capital RegionBayanan, Muntinlupa CityUP. Side Subdivision Region IIICabanatuan CityCesar Vergara Memorial Science High School Region IV-A (CALABARZON) Lucena City, QuezonLucena West I Elementary School Region XIDavao CityDaniel R. Aguinaldo National High School Region XIDipolog CityALS, City Schools Division office (Registration) Zamboanga del Norte National High School (Testing Center) Eligible Applicants: An elementary dropout who is at least 11 years old on or before the day of the test may take the elementary level ALS A & E Test A high school dropout who is at least 15 years old on or before the day of the test may take the secondary level ALS A & E Test Non-passers of previous ALS A & E Test/s Learners/completers of the ALS Programs Youth and adults although in school but overaged for elementary level (more than 11 years old) or high school (more than 15 years old) Required Documents: 2 ID photos (2×2) with name tag (Surname, first name, middle name) Original and xerox copies of any of the following government-issued identification Valid driver’s license Valid passport Voter’s ID SSS/GSIS ID Postal ID NBI Clearance (xerox/photocopy not needed) Barangay Certification with Photo stating complete name and date of birth of the prospective registrant School drop-outs who are not employed and not old enough to acquire the above documents...

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Alternative Learning System: Frequently Asked Questions

Posted by on Jul 24, 2012 in Alternative Education, Articles, Frequently Asked Questions, Getting Ready for College | 76 comments

There are only several days before the registration for the Alternative Learning System Accreditation and Equivalency (ALS A & E) Test 2012 ends, and since we’ve been getting a lot of questions from you, we decided to seek the assistance of an ALS representative so they can tell us more about the program and the exam. Following the tip of ALS graduates, we went to a nearby Barangay Hall to ask if they are offering ALS A & E classes, and true enough, a large streamer with the words “Alternative Learning System Community Learning Center” was hanging by the gate. We asked a bystander what day and time the center usually opens, and we were advised to see the ALS Coordinator who also conducts classes at the nearby elementary school for more information. When we reached the school, we learned that the ALS Coordinator the barangay official was referring to is Mrs. Norma Ayala, the ALS Coordinator for the entire East District of Lucena City, so we were glad because we’ll probably have all our questions answered and more. After introducing ourselves and stating our purpose for the visit, they gladly oblige us with a one-on-one interview. Below is a summary of what we were able to find out during the course of the conversation. What is Alternative Learning System? Alternative Learning System is a project of the Department of Education through its Bureau of Alternative Learning System. Its aim is to help elementary and high school dropouts or those who have not been able to attend any schooling at all to finish their primary or secondary education through non-traditional ways of schooling. This means after passing the ALS A & E Test, you will be considered a grade school or a high school graduate, depending on the test you took, and will be eligible to apply for college. Where can I take ALS classes? You can take ALS classes at Community Learning Centers (CLCs). These CLCs can be public elementary or high schools, barangay halls, rooms or buildings lent by government agencies or private companies and organizations, or any other open space where learners can gather together. How can I enroll for an ALS class? Just drop by at the nearest public elementary school, high school, or barangay hall at your place and they will tell you what to do. What are the requirements? The minimum requirements for enrolling in ALS classes are birth certificates and Forms 137 (Applies to people who have attended at least a year of formal schooling). Who conducts ALS classes? ALS A & E classes are conducted by licensed teachers employed by the Department of Education.  Livelihood classes, on the other hand, are conducted by professional practitioners of the vocational courses they are teaching. How long do ALS classes last? ALS A & E classes take a minimum of 800 hours to complete.  These may last from eight to ten months, although the duration may vary depending on the progress of the learners. The duration of livelihood programs depends on the specific skill being learned. Dressmaking, for example, takes about 275 hours while Massage Therapy takes about 560 hours. Are we required to enroll in the ALS A & E classes before we can take the ALS A & E test? Attending the ALS...

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How to Choose the Right Course in College

Posted by on May 25, 2012 in Articles, Getting Ready for College | 254 comments

Many high school students often have trouble choosing what college course to take, especially those who are in their junior and senior years.  It can be a really tough decision to make for teens because peer or parental pressure tends to have a huge impact on decision making at that age. Because of this, many college students become stuck with courses they don’t like or they are not particularly interested in. Since the course you’re going to take will have a lot of say on the career you can eventually pursue, it’s important that you decide which course will be the best for you well in advance. The only question is, how will you know which college course you should take? Here are a few things to consider: 1. Your strengths and talents Figuring out your strengths and talents is one of the most important steps in finding out what course will suit you well. For example, if you can easily cook a new dish by using some of the ingredients you just found in the fridge, you can start by looking at different courses with cooking subjects such as Bachelor of Science in Culinary Management, Bachelor of Science in Food Technology, and Bachelor of Science in Hotel and Restaurant Management and go from there. You may also want to consider short TESDA courses such as Culinary Arts and Commercial Cooking if you’d like to test things first. On the other hand, if you’ve always been good at figuring out how things work and how you can improve existing tools or work processes, then courses that will introduce you to different systems, designs, or products that you can physically touch are the courses that you might want to explore. Courses in the field of Engineering like Bachelor of Science in Electronics and Communications Engineering (BSECE); Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering (BSME); Mechatronics Servicing NC IV, and those Computer Sciences like Bachelor of Science in Computer Science; Bachelor of Science in Information Systems; and Computer Hardware Servicing NC II are good options to start with. If your main points have always lain on your ability to understand and interact with people, however, then courses in the field of Social Sciences might suit you well. Examples of these are AB Mass Communication, BS Psychology, BS Sociology, BS Public Administration, and AB Linguistics. The same goes for any other talent that you may have. If you are good at it, then try to find a course that can help you become even better. Johann Wolfgang von Goethe once said, “The person born with a talent they are meant to use will find their greatest happiness in using it. ” Of course, that doesn’t mean you can’t pursue a communication-related degree if your grammar is far from perfect or an Engineering degree if you are not a walking calculator, but there will be the question of how interested you are in it and how much effort will you be willing to put forth to finish that course. 2. Your interest and willingness to learn Let’s say that you haven’t figured out where your talent lies, how can you come up with the best decision? Think about your interests and your willingness to learn a particular subject. You can start by listing everything you like or have always been interested in then try...

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How to Search for Scholarship Grants Online

Posted by on Mar 21, 2012 in Getting Ready for College, Grants and Scholarship Programs | 6 comments

How to Search for Scholarship Grants Online

Sorting through thousands of internet pages can be a bit tiring; however, if you know what to look for, your chances of getting a desirable result in a matter of minutes will dramatically increase. Here are some tips in searching scholarship grants online: 1. Unless you are looking for something highly specific, try to use simple keywords. The content of much of the hundreds of thousands of web pages out there were designed to be easily understood by the general public so using words or terms that are only familiar to a certain group of people may exclude relevant but differently worded content from the results. 2. Search for specific people, groups, or organizations that are likely to offer scholarship grants. These often include well-known charities, philanthropists, and large companies that have community outreach or Corporate Social Responsibility programs. Check their official websites for related information. 3. Scan the list of government agencies in your country or area then visit their official websites. Most of them offer different kinds of scholarship grants to poor but deserving students who want to go to college. 4. Scan the list of schools in your country or area then visit their official websites. You can usually find a list of the kinds of scholarships they offer as well as the requirements and procedure for applying somewhere on the site. 5. Check out the official websites of politicians in your area. They usually offer scholarship grants to deserving students either as mandated by the national government or through their personal funds. If they don’t have an official website, you can probably get in touch with the Press Relations Officer of the politician or the Press Relation agency of the local government for information. 6. A number of foreign organizations, schools, and government agencies give out international scholarship grants to deserving students, particularly those from developing countries. The United States, United Kingdom, Australia, Japan, and China are just some of the countries where such scholarship programs exist. Of course, we also did a little search of our own – here’s a list of various Scholarship Programs in the Philippines. Though not yet complete, this can help you get started. You’ll probably come up with other searching techniques of your own as you go along.  So if you’ve got any tips or information to share, feel free to leave a comment below. And if you like this post, feel free to share this with your friends....

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In Demand Courses in the Philippines for SY 2008-2009

Posted by on Oct 23, 2012 in Getting Ready for College | 0 comments

Courses can gain and lose popularity in a matter of years. Even so, there are courses that continue to come out on top in spite of the ever increasing competition over enrollees. Below is the list of in demand courses for SY 2008-2009 based on the Higher Education Indicators released by the Commission on Higher Education last July 24, 2012. Please note that the table below is only a list of popular courses in the Philippines that got the most number of enrollees for SY 2008-2009 and does not automatically translate to courses with the most number of available jobs waiting for graduates. For the list of in demand jobs and hard to fill occupations in key industries, please check out our article on In Demand Jobs in the Philippines and Abroad. Academic Discipline Number of Enrollees Sciences  22, 641 Maritime  65, 443 Medicine and Health Related  517, 319 Engineering and Technology  319, 775 Agriculture/Agricultural Engineering, Forestry/Veterinary Medicine  63, 315 Teacher Education  325, 186 IT Related  300, 882 Mathematics  14, 636 Architectural and Town Planning  18, 004...

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In Demand Courses in the Philippines for SY 2009-2010

Posted by on Oct 23, 2012 in Getting Ready for College | 0 comments

Courses can gain and lose popularity in a matter of years. Even so, there are courses that continue to come out on top in spite of the ever increasing competition over enrollees. Below is the list of in demand courses for SY 2009-2010 based on the Higher Education Indicators released by the Commission on Higher Education last July 24, 2012. Please note that the table below is only a list of popular courses in the Philippines that got the most number of enrollees for SY 2009-2010 and does not automatically translate to courses with the most number of available jobs waiting for graduates. For the list of in demand jobs and hard to fill occupations in key industries, please check out our article on In Demand Jobs in the Philippines and Abroad. Academic Discipline Number of Enrollees Sciences  24, 127 Maritime  88, 450 Medicine and Health Related  440, 335 Engineering and Technology  344, 662 Agriculture/Agricultural Engineering, Forestry/Veterinary Medicine  59, 692 Teacher Education  352, 046 IT Related  348, 462 Mathematics  12, 154 Architectural and Town Planning  20,...

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In Demand Courses in the Philippines for SY 2010-2011

Posted by on Oct 23, 2012 in Getting Ready for College | 2 comments

Courses can gain and lose popularity in a matter of years. Even so, there are courses that continue to come out on top in spite of the ever increasing competition over enrollees. Below is the list of in demand courses for SY 2010-2011 based on the Higher Education Indicators released by the Commission on Higher Education last July 24, 2012. Please note that the table below is only a list of popular courses in the Philippines that got the most number of enrollees for  SY 2010-2011 and does not automatically translate to courses with the most number of available jobs waiting for graduates. For the list of in demand jobs and hard to fill occupations in key industries, please check out our article on In Demand Jobs in the Philippines and Abroad. Academic Discipline Number of Enrollees Sciences  25, 425 Maritime  109, 256 Medicine and Health Related  363, 147 Engineering and Technology  354, 218 Agriculture/Agricultural Engineering, Forestry/Veterinary Medicine  63, 679 Teacher Education  400, 912 IT Related  376, 046 Mathematics  12, 611 Architectural and Town Planning  23, 103...

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In Demand Courses in the Philippines for SY 2011-2012

Posted by on Oct 23, 2012 in Getting Ready for College | 0 comments

Courses can gain and lose popularity in a matter of years. Even so, there are courses that continue to come out on top in spite of the ever increasing competition over enrollees. Below is the list of in demand courses for SY 2011-2012 based on the Higher Education Indicators released by the Commission on Higher Education last July 24, 2012. Please note that the table below is only a list of popular courses in the Philippines that got the most number of enrollees for SY 2011-2012 and does not automatically translate to courses with the most number of available jobs waiting for graduates.   Academic Discipline Number of Enrollees Sciences  27, 304 Maritime  117, 556 Medicine and Health Related  281, 038 Engineering and Technology  372, 003 Agriculture/Agricultural Engineering, Forestry/Veterinary Medicine  68, 133 Teacher Education  449, 904 IT Related  390, 826 Mathematics  13, 358 Architectural and Town Planning  26, 601 For the list of in demand jobs and hard to fill occupations in key industries, please check out our article on In Demand Jobs in the Philippines and...

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Philippine Educational Placement Test and Alternative Learning System Accreditation and Equivalency Program

Posted by on Mar 15, 2012 in Alternative Education, Articles, Entrance Examination, Getting Ready for College | 50 comments

Not everyone is given the chance to complete their studies without interruption. Sometimes financial, health, and personal problems force a student to stop schooling for a year or two; sometimes they force the student to stop from going to school altogether, probably in order to work; raise a family; or attend to a personal problem. In the past, students would have had no choice but to catch up on the years they spent away from school once they have resumed their schooling, but thanks to programs like the Philippine Educational Placement Test (PEPT) and the Alternative Learning System Accreditation and Equivalency (ALS A & E) Program of the Department of Education, students who have stopped schooling now have better options. PEPT The Philippine Educational Placement Test or PEPT is a test that seeks to evaluate a student’s competency in five core subjects – English, Filipino, Science, Mathematics, and Social Studies – in relation to their age. By taking the PEPT, a student who fell behind their classmates because of dropping out from school can have the option to skip the grade or year levels they would normally be required to complete as long as they can prove that their competency is equivalent to students the same age as theirs. For example, a 12 year-old student who stopped during the third grade can choose to skip the fourth and fifth grades and be automatically promoted to sixth grade as long as he’ll pass the test. The same also goes for High School students. A 16 year-old student who stopped on her first year in High School can choose to skip second and third years and be automatically promoted to fourth year as long as she can prove that she is as competent as any 4th year High School student. ALS A & E  Like PEPT, the Alternative Learning System Accreditation and Equivalency or ALS A & E seeks to evaluate the competency of a student who has stopped schooling; however, contrary to PEPT that is primarily concerned with promoting students to their rightful grade or year levels in relation to their age, ALS A & E is more concerned on helping people who have not had or have stopped formal schooling become eligible to pursue higher education at a college or university or be employed or promoted at a private company or government agency. Examples of these are out-of-school youths, industry-based workers like domestic helpers; factory workers; and drivers, people with disabilities, members of cultural minorities like Aetas and Mangyans, and former inmates and rebels. If you are interested in taking the PEPT or ALS A & E, you may get in touch with the officials of the Department of Education through the following contact information: Director IV, Bureau of Alternative Learning System 3F Mabini Bldg., DepEd Complex, Meralco Avenue, Pasig City 1600 Telephone Number: (02)635-5193; 635-5188 Fax: (02)635-5189 DETxt Action Center: 0919-4560027 Email Address:...

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