Education Matters: Insights on Education, Learning and Training in Canada, February 2008, Vol. 4, No. 6
Authors: Kathryn McMullen
Collection: Research Materials
This article, published by Statistics Canada, looks at the relationships between schooling, literacy skills, aging, and the labour market.
The author examines a study undertaken by two economists at the University of British Columbia. Based on data from the 2003 International Adult Literacy and Skills Survey (IALSS), the economists determined that younger Canadians have lower levels of literacy than older Canadians had, at the same age and level of education. They concluded that schools may be doing a poorer job of imparting literacy at any given level, but that this has been compensated by the fact that successive generations have attained higher levels of schooling.
However, the author of this article offers another interpretation of these results. Larger percentages of Canadians are graduating from high school and much larger proportions are graduating with college diplomas and university degrees, suggesting that the educational system has become more inclusive over time. Therefore, it could be argued that the educational system has been serving a larger and more diverse student population.