This report describes research designed to explore the effectiveness of the ABRACADABRA (ABRA) web-based literacy system. The project involved more than 400 students in kindergarten to Grade 2 in classrooms in Alberta, Ontario and Quebec.
Analysis of the findings showed that the ABRA system as used by teachers had significant effects on children’s sight word reading and awareness of the structure of language. There were also discernible but non-significant effects on the children’s knowledge of letters.
The authors point out that most previous research on the impact of educational technology has focused on single commercially available CD/video packages. The more dynamic web-based technologies that are readily available, free to all users, could have a profound impact on literacy practice across Canada.
To understand and describe the state of a field, researchers traditionally carry out a literature review. This approach is widely accepted as a way to summarize what is known in the field. With Connecting the Dots: Improving Accountability in the Adult Literacy Field in Canada the authors knew they needed to do that. But more was needed. While a literature review was critical to understanding the conceptual underpinnings of recent initiatives for greater accountability, it was important to know the impact of these measures on the field. To do this, it was necessary to talk to people who work in the adult literacy
field to hear their perspectives and learn about their experiences. The field review presented here offers those voices to complement the literature review.
The report is organized into four sections: how participants defined accountability and the different emphases they place on the concept; a picture based on interviewees’ descriptions of how accountability information is collected,
by whom and the gaps and challenges encountered; the issues associated with the implementation of accountability measures, the need for respectful, knowledgeable relationships and clarity in communication and expectations; and finally the topic of resources and funding related to accountability structures.
This document offers an analysis of the status of prior learning assessment and recognition (PLAR) across Canada. As well, it includes suggestions about what is needed in order for employers, post-secondary institutions, and government to recognize and value experiential and informal learning.
The authors point out that while expanding the understanding of learning and education is certainly an issue of social justice, it is also a matter of pressing economic urgency in the face of labour shortages, skills deficits, and underrepresentation of specific populations within the labour markets.
The document includes several appendices that provide information on the recognition of PLAR activities in 12 Canadian jurisdictions; the development of policies and practices related to PLAR in Quebec; eight international case studies; standards and principles for PLAR; the Halifax Declaration for the Recognition of Prior Learning; and impediments to adult learner participation.
Authors: George Demetrion
The following is an adaptation of a presentation the author gave on theorist/practitioner tensions in adult literacy education at the Literacy Pre-Conference of the 2005 Adult Research Conference in Athens, Georgia.
For a more extended discussion of this important topic, consult the author's bibliographical review essay, “Between the Life of the Mind and the World of Action: Explorations into Consciousness, Pedagogy, Politics, and Philosophical Science in Adult Literacy Education” available at http://www.nald.ca/fulltext/George/biblio/cover.htm.
Results from the Adult Literacy and Life Skills Survey
This report uses the results of the 2003 Adult Literacy and Life Skills Survey to describe adult learning in Canada. The goal of the report is to present a comprehensive portrait of adult learning including participation in organized forms of adult learning, both formal and non-formal, as well as informal learning. The report addresses differences in participation between selected countries and within Canada and notes changes in participation patterns. Findings from the 2003 Adult Literacy and Life Skills Survey are, when appropriate, compared to results from the 1994-1998 International Adult Literacy Survey. In addition to a detailed introduction, this document includes the following sections:
Chapter 1 - International, provincial and territorial comparisons of adult learning
Chapter 2 -Adult learning: who is being left out?
Chapter 3 -Adult learning and the world of work
Authors: Richard Darville
Adult Literacy Work in Canada provides a map of the state of literacy work in Canada, which identifies key issues in literacy for the 1990's. This study is offered as a stimulus to informed discussion and debate on literacy questions in various Canadian jurisdictions. It is also intended as a contribution to maintain the level of public awareness developed during 1990, International Literacy Year.
Ideas in the report have developed in many discussions among literacy practitioners and advocates. Many governmental policy documents and reports, and a number of civil servants, have been consulted. Some information has been drawn from a survey conducted by the Canadian Alliance for Literacy, a coalition of national organizations that seek to promote a more literate Canada. Reports of provincial and territorial representatives to the Movement for Canadian Literacy Board have been very helpful.
Adult Literacy Work in Canada is part of a larger project to enhance public understanding of the stake of Canadians in a literate society.
OECD Education Working Papers, No. 72
This document is housed on the OECD server.
The authors of this paper note that, as the population ages, the relationship between aging and skills is becoming an important policy issue. Their goal is to provide an overview of what is known about age-skill profiles and to carry out an analysis that shows how data based on repeated measures can be used to estimate skill gain and skill loss over the lifespan and over time.
They note that data from the 1994-1998 International Adult Literacy Survey (IALS) and the 2003-2007 Adult Literacy and Lifeskills Survey (ALL) will be linked with the Program for the International Assessment of Adult Competencies (PIAAC). This offers a unique opportunity to examine trends over time for a wide range of countries.
In addition to analyzing statistical data, the authors summarize a variety of studies pertaining to the effects of both genetics and early learning in the development of skills. They use a variety of charts and graphs to present the information clearly.
Women's Education Des Femmes, Spring, Vol. 10, No. 2
Authors: Karl Dehli
This article discusses training and education for women, and how women can obtain qualifications for access to non-traditional, professional or managerial occupations. The focus of the article is on apprenticeship training models used by the Norwegian Union of Municipal Employees, in an attempt at improving the working conditions, wages and opportunities for women at the lowest levels of public sector employment in Norway.
The article is presented in English and includes a summary written in French.
Prepared by Jean Rasmussen of Literacy BC, this Framework is intended as a guide to promote good practice and provide support and information to the many individuals and groups involved in family literacy
This document was prepared in 1999 by a team of family literacy stakeholders led by Literacy BC and the Provincial Family Literacy Working Group – Training and Standards Sub-Committee. The framework is intended to promote good practice and provide support and information to the wide range of individuals and groups involved with family literacy throughout British Columbia. The document includes a definition of family literacy and statements of the goals and values of family literacy in B.C. The Statements of Best Practice section presents a list of 16 factors that contribute to best practice in family literacy, from philosophy and planning to resources and language diversity. The Standards of Best Practice section reworks those 16 factors into a checklist to provide an evaluation tool for program planning and development.