Authors: The Labour Market Group
The Labour Market Group (LMG) is a not-for-profit organization, funded by the Ontario Ministry of Training Colleges and Universities, that promotes the development of a skilled and competitive workforce.
Each year, the LMG draws together data from a variety of sources to complete a Trends, Opportunities and Priorities report. In this edition of the report, the District of Nipissing and the District of Parry Sound are dealt with separately because of the significant demographic differences between the two districts.
For each of these districts, the authors have prepared an action plan that highlights priority workforce issues and sets out proposed partnerships and steps to deal with the issues.
The authors have also included a list of participants in the community consultation process and provided a glossary of terms related to the labour market.
The authors of this study use data from the child component of the 2001 Participation and Activity Limitation Survey (PALS) to analyze access to educational services for Canadian children with disabilities.
The first part of their analysis deals with national and provincial trends in an effort to determine if where a child lives makes a difference when it comes to access to educational services. The second part analyzes the effect of the type and complexity of disabilities on access to education.
The authors found that in Canada, the majority of children with disabilities attend regular school, with one quarter attending a regular school that offers special education classes and only a small minority attending special education schools.
There is much variability in provincial rates of school participation and it is unclear if these differences reflect provincial differences in policies, such as increased inclusion or an emphasis on mainstreaming children with disabilities, or whether it is a reflection of limited special education services available.
The authors found that the type of disability and its complexity are both important for access of school services. Children with physical disabilities only or chronic conditions only are more likely to attend regular classes and less likely to experience difficulties in accessing special education services, as compared to children who have a developmental, learning, or psychological disability.
The document was published by the Canadian Council on Learning (CCL) and Statistics Canada.
Authors: Nick Johnson
In this paper, the author suggests that distance learning is not only here to stay, but will have an unprecedented impact on the educational systems currently in place.
The promise of online learning is that it will one day deliver personalized content to every student, tailored to each individual’s learning style and presented at a pace determined by the individual’s ability and availability.
Whether such a grand promise can be delivered is a topic for testing and debate in the next few years, the author says. At the same time, because of the Internet, more academic information continues to become more readily accessible to more people at a lower cost, and that pattern is not about to change.
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.
Education Matters: Insights on Education, Learning and Training in Canada, April 2008, Vol. 5, No. 1
Authors: Kathryn McMullen
This article, published by Statistics Canada, provides an analysis of some findings from the 2003 International Adult Literacy and Life Skills Survey (IALLS).
The results indicate that those with the highest levels of literacy participate in adult learning at much higher rates than those at the lowest levels of literacy. The implication is that those most in need of learning to enhance their skills to compete in the labour market are least likely to participate in education and training opportunities.
Family background also plays a key role in participation in adult learning. People who grew up in families where literacy is valued tend to think positively about adult education.
The author notes that financial support from employers plays a central role in supporting opportunities for adult education and training. However, participation in employer-sponsored training is not equal across groups of workers, and workers with the least education are also least likely to participate in training.
Series: State of the Field Report
This study, prepared under the auspices of the Canadian Council on Learning (CCL), is one of a series of reports on the state adult learning in Canada. The reports were intended to offer a knowledge baseline for the Adult Learning Knowledge Centre, which had recently been established at the University of New Brunswick.
The authors reviewed and analyzed information from databases, bibliographies, websites, and publications. As well as offering general observations on literacy, they organized their findings according to specific themes of Aboriginal literacy; English as a Second Language (ESL) and First Language Literacy; Francophone literacy; women and literacy; health literacy; family literacy; corrections literacy; literacy and work; learning disabilities and literacy; and technologies and literacy.
The document also includes detailed information about the methodology used; notes about gaps in available data; and suggestions for further study.
The International Adult Literacy Survey Results
In 1990, Statistics Canada released the results of the Survey of Literacy Skills Used in Daily Activities (LSUDA), a 1989 Canada-wide survey of the reading skills of adults. In 1992, the then Ontario Ministry of Education reported on the LSUDA results for Ontario (Stan Jones, Survey of Adult Literacy in Ontario).
Shortly after the release of the LSUDA results in Canada and those of the National Adult Literacy Survey in the United States, interest in a comparative international study of adult literacy began to grow. In December 1995, the first results of the 1994 survey of adult literacy in seven countries, the International Adult Literacy Survey (IALS), were reported in Literacy, Economy and Society, a joint publication of Statistics Canada and the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development. In September 1996, Statistics Canada released Reading the Future: A Portrait of Literacy in Canada, a report on the national data collected in IALS.
To measure literacy in IALS, respondents answered a set of test questions designed to measure adult reading skills as well as background questions about their education, work experience and literacy practices.
Ontario participated in the survey in order to gain key data to inform policy development and to focus its literacy programming. The present report covers in detail the IALS results for Ontario. It updates and supplements the previous report, Survey of Adult Literacy in Ontario. It is organized much as the previous report with a table, graph and commentary for each of the major literacy relationships. Throughout the text, shaded boxes provide background information. Usually the tables provide results for three scales -- prose, document and quantitative -- but the graphs are used to point to particularly interesting results in part of the data.
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.
A PowerPoint Presentation
Series: IALSS 2003 Findings
Authors: Satya Brink, Ph.D.
This PowerPoint presentation looks at the implications for Canada of the Adult Literacy and Life Skills (ALL) Survey of 2003. Because the international document did not provide basic statistics for Canada, many new charts for Canada were created for this presentation.
The author examines the level of literacy proficiency in the Canadian working-age population; the proficiency of Canadians in different component skills; how Canadians compare internationally; factors affecting literacy proficiency; and how literacy performance is distributed in the Canadian population.
The findings contain both good news and areas of concern. On the plus side, Canada maintained its average literacy score between 1994 and 2003. However, the author points out that while the proportion of Canadians with lower literacy skills remained the same, the number of people at that level rose to 9 million because any improvement was slower than the rate of population change.
As well, immigrants, particularly recent immigrants and immigrants whose mother tongue is neither English nor French, did poorly in the survey.
Authors: Norman S. Rowen
This document offers a description and comparative analysis of possible approaches to service coordination for Employment Ontario (EO) to help achieve the vision of a comprehensive system that breaks down barriers between programs and better integrates the supports that clients require to be successful in their training.
The author and his team examined four possible approaches to service coordination: case management, inter-agency cooperation, integrated programming, and community‐wide planning. They consulted a broad range of Literacy and Basic Skills (LBS) practitioners throughout the province; reviewed literature on best practices in Canada and in other countries; and conducted interviews with representatives from Workforce Literacy and Essential Skills (WLES) projects. Based on their findings, the author concludes that coordinating services using a case management approach is likely to be most effective, and the challenges to adopting this approach can, on balance, be addressed with current resources