Adult Education

Adult Education (AE) presents an opportunity for members of the Doña Ana community to improve their quality of life through the acquisition and improvement of basic academic skills at no charge to the student. AE provides a variety of educational programs and student support services that help individuals achieve their goals and transition to college and family sustaining jobs.

Adult Education instructional programs and classes include basic literacy, English as a Second Language (ESL), and foundational academic skills in Math, Reading, and Writing.  This comprehensive program includes instruction in many different areas including Civics and U.S. citizenship, computer literacy, and work readiness. Student support services include basic skills assessments, student orientations, advising and referral services, individual and small group tutoring, and assistance with college transition.

Free, Noncredit Instructional Programs

Foundational Skills Program. Those 16 years of age or older who are wanting to improve or gain basic skills may attend classes that teach basic math, reading, and writing.  These classes focus on Language Arts and Math, with supplemental instruction provided in Social Studies, Civics, and Science.  Classes prepare students to sit for a high school equivalency test; however, a student may attend classes even if they already have a high school diploma.

AE offers foundational skills instruction in English and Spanish. Students who attend Spanish high school equivalency classes are required to concurrently enroll in and attend ESL classes. Students who are under 18 may attend the high school equivalency program with an official withdrawal notice from the public schools.

ESL—English as a Second Language. This program helps improve English language skills for non-native speakers. Students acquire academic English skills (reading, writing, and grammar), build their vocabulary, and increase conversation fluency and listening comprehension. Small group instruction is available at each center to support learning.

ESL students who are ready to exit the program and transition to college are assisted with the process to help them experience success.

Enrolling in Classes

Each fall, spring, and summer semester, AE offers classes in English as a Second Language, and The Foundational Skills Program in English and Spanish. Classes meet at Doña Ana Community College and at several other locations throughout Doña Ana County. Classes meet a minimum of 10 hours a week, with some intensive classes meeting as much as 20 hours a week.

New or inactive students must attend new student orientation. This orientation meets over several days and includes discussion of program requirements, and what a student can expect in class.  Students are assessed during orientation to determine their Educational Functioning Level, and to determine which class best meets their individual needs and goals.  Adult Education uses two different assessments: the Test of Adult Basic Education (TABE) and the Test of Adult Education Complete Language Assessment System-English (TABE CLAS-E).

Students are strongly encouraged to pre-register two to three weeks prior to the beginning of each semester. After pretesting is completed, students are advised regarding their pretest scores, and together, the student and an advisor create a plan to address the student’s specific learning needs, educational goal(s) and strengths, and the learning process. Centers have a comprehensive inventory of textbooks, and excellent multi-media educational software to provide instruction in a variety of presentation modalities.

Support Services for Student Success

At the adult learning centers, many of the following types of student support can be found: pretesting, academic advising, new student orientations, guidance with goal-setting and college transition, student follow-up, information and referral, and career guidance.

Tutoring Services
Students may receive free tutoring at any DACC adult learning center. Trained tutors provide personal assistance and small-group instruction in reading and writing, mathematics, grammar, ESL, and other basic skills. AE staff understand that learning takes time and make an extra effort to meet individual learner needs.

Adult Education offers students many opportunities to discover their learning styles, and create effective strategies to help students truly learn the material covered in their classes. The learning centers throughout the county have resources, information, and staff that can help improve time management, listening, note taking, and test-taking skills. Students are encouraged to explore their own learning preferences, and find a study style that enhances their strengths. 

College Transition Advising
College Transition Advising, offered through AE, assists students in preparing for a successful experience in college. Advising is available for students at each of the learning centers and guides students in making a successful transition from AE to college. Students will become familiar with the admissions process, financial aid and scholarship opportunities, and career pathway options at DACC and NMSU. Call (575) 528-7038 for an appointment.

U.S. Citizenship Preparation
Civics and citizenship preparation are incorporated into every ESL class as part of the comprehensive program.  In addition, each learning center periodically offers citizenship preparation workshops.  Knowledgeable instructors teach U.S. history, government, citizens’ rights, duties and responsibilities, requirements for U.S. citizenship, civic participation, basic reading, writing, and conversational English. Students who meet specific criteria may apply for a scholarship to help with the cost of filing for U.S. Citizenship.

Computer Literacy
Computer literacy is central to the modern workforce. AE students are able to participate in various computer literacy programs including one-on-one tutoring, and workshops.  Computer literacy is also incorporated into the comprehensive adult education classroom program.



NOTE: Day and evening classes are available in the fall, spring, and summer semesters. Schedules vary and are subject to change, please call for current information.

Las Cruces
Quintana Adult Learning Center
Doña Ana Community College, room DALR-160
3400 South Espina St.
Las Cruces, NM 88003
Phone: (575) 527-7540, 527-7740
Toll Free: 1 (800) 903-7503
Fax: (575) 528-7065
Hours: Mon.–Fri., 8 a.m. – 5 p.m.

Mesquite Adult Learning Center
Located in the DACC Workforce Center
2345 Nevada Ave.
Las Cruces, NM 88001
Phone: (575) 528-7479
Hours: Mon.-Fri., 8 a.m. – 7 p.m.

Anthony Area
Gadsden Adult Learning Center Located in the DACC Gadsden Center
1700 E. O’Hara Rd.
Anthony, NM 88021
Phone: (575) 882-6813
Hours: Mon.–Fri., 8 a.m. – 5 p.m.

Chaparral Adult Learning Center
755 Prescott Anthony Dr.
Chaparral, NM 88081
Phone: (575) 824-2010
Hours: Mon.–Fri., 8 a.m. – 5 p.m.

Sunland Park
Sunland Park Adult Learning Center Located in the DACC Sunland Park Center
3365 McNutt Road & Santo Domingo Road Sunland Park, NM 88063
Phone: (575) 874-7790
Hours: Mon.–Fri., 8 a.m. – 5 p.m.