Designers for Learning’s Mission

Designers for Learning (EIN: 47-1639401) is organized as a nonprofit corporation in the State of Illinois, and operates exclusively for charitable purposes in accordance with section 501(c)(3) of the U.S. Internal Revenue Code. Designers for Learning provides educational resources and service-learning experiences designed to promote literacy, including the ability to read and write, as well as the knowledge and skills related to a specified subject or field. We promote service-learning opportunities through collaboration with students, volunteers, schools, and other social enterprises.

We founded Designers for Learning with an aim to provide instructional design support to underserved social needs and we have devoted 100% of our focus since incorporation exclusively to helping adults with low literacy and math skills. Our service-learning projects to support adult basic education have included both small and large-scale projects to crowdsource the creation of free open educational resources (OER) for adults with low literacy and math skills. While our early focus has been on instructional support for adult literacy, we look forward to expanding our reach to other literacy initiatives. 

Our Service-Learning Focus

Over 3,500 people have enrolled in our 100% virtual service projects to learn about adult basic education needs and to help us build a repository of free lesson plans and OER for adult educators and their students that are aligned to the College and Career Readiness Standards (see our Adult Learning Zone on OER Commons). In exchange for volunteering in our service-learning projects, our participants gain real-world experience, as well as support from subject matter experts in the field of education. We aim to align our service-learning projects with the academic and experiential learning needs of our volunteers. To that end, we work with professors and other student advisors as partners to find ways to incorporate our service-learning projects with a student’s course, internship, or practicum requirements. Find out about how to involve your students … or how to become a volunteer mentor.


  1. Tomeka Lockhart German says:

    I am so grateful to have found this site/organization! I have completed my Masters in Instructional Technology but don’t have any real world experience yet in the field (I am a programmer for Alabama Dept. of Corrections) and would like to build up my portfolio before I begin applying for any ISD positions. I do plan on enrolling in the Mobile course you have listed in June but would like to be informed if you decide to offer another course in Instructional Technology as you have in the past. Incidentally, we (myself and a couple of friends) are looking into to starting a nonprofit to offer both ESL and Adult Education courses. Until that comes to pass, I would love to volunteer my services to your cause in whatever capacity!

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