Series: Composite Learning Index
Authors: Canadian Council on Learning (CCL)
The Composite Learning Index (CLI) is an annual measure of Canada’s progress in lifelong learning. It is based on statistical indicators that reflect the many ways Canadians learn, whether in school, in the home, at work or within the community.The first index of its kind in the world, the CLI is a valuable measurement tool that recognizes how learning throughout people’s lives is critical to their individual success, the success of their community and the success
of the country as a whole.
Until the Canadian Council on Learning created the Composite Learning Index in 2006 there was no means to measure how Canada performed across the full spectrum of learning. To reflect this broad perspective, the CLI uses a wide range of learning indicators to generate numeric scores for 4,700 cities and communities across Canada. A high CLI score means that a particular city or community possesses learning conditions that support social and economic well-being.
The 2009 CLI is made up of 17 indicators and 25 specific measures. These are organized within four pillars: Learning to Know, Learning to Do, Learning to Live Together and Learning to Be. These pillars recognize the broad scope of lifelong learning — at home, in the classroom, at work and in the community. Indicators reflect an aspect of the state of lifelong learning across Canada and can include more than one specific measure. Specific measures are the building blocks of the index. These have defined units that quantify each indicator. For example, “Youth literacy skills” is an indicator that uses four specific measures from the OECD’s Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA). The four measures are: mean problem-solving scores for 15-year-olds; mean reading scores; mean math scores; mean science scores for 15-year-olds.
The report shows a trend of the 2009 CLI scores and trends for major Canadian cities. For the first time, Canada’s overall score on the Composite Learning Index has declined, dropping two points to 75 in 2009, from 77 in 2008.
In short, the CLI is designed as an objective and reliable measurement tool that can help communities make the best possible decisions about learning - decisions that will strengthen social ties, bolster the economy and, of course, improve people’s lives
Celebrating 40 Years of the Adult Education and Literacy System of the United States
Authors: Thomas G. Sticht
The author discusses 40 years of Adult Education in the United States. This year, they celebrate 40 years of Adult Literacy and Literacy System that was created by the Adult Education Act of 1966, and which continues today as Title 2: The Adult Education and Family Literacy Act of the Workforce Investment Act of 1998.
How the Adult Education Act emerged from the adult basic education program of the War on Poverty illustrates how multiple interests were brought together to break through a barrier that had blocked the development of an Adult Education and Literacy System for decades.
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: Grant Johnston
This paper looks at whether an increase in the basic literacy skills of adults would have a positive effect on the New Zealand economy. It finds good evidence for the benefits of literacy: studies
consistently find that adults with better literacy skills are more likely to be employed, and to earn more, than those with poorer literacy skills, even when taking account of other factors which affect work performance.
There is little rigorous evidence, however, for the benefits of adult literacy training and almost no accompanying information on the costs of this training.
While there is a good case for an increased focus on adult literacy, and on workplace literacy in particular, these findings suggest a cautious approach to expanding publicly-funded adult literacy programmes.
There is a clear need for more and better New Zealand-based research, for piloting innovative literacy programmes and for undertaking good-quality evaluations. A modest increase in literacy training may not materially affect economic performance.
Insights into Workplace Basic Skills from Four UK Organisations
This report presents four cases that have been drawn from a larger longitudinal study which analyzes the immediate and longer term outcomes of workplace-linked interventions designed to improve adult basic skills. In this study, researchers interviewed and tracked 564 employees involved in workplace basic skills programs in the transportation, cleaning and maintenance, administrative (research) and food processing sectors in the north and south of England. The researchers' goal was to determine what happens to the employees that may be related to their learning experiences, and what happens in the company that may be related to the existence of the learning program.
The report begins with some brief background information followed by a review of recent literature on the topic. Each of the following case studies is then presented:
- Coopers - a large food manufacturer
- HLN Manufacturing - large engineering company specializing in the manufacture of parts for cars
- The Weapons Defence Establishment - weapons manufacturer
- The Thorpton Local Authority
Series: Adult Working Group
In June 2005, the Canadian Council on Learning (CCL) held a Health and Learning Knowledge Centre (HLKC) consultation in Vancouver, British Columbia. At the consultation, participants agreed to establish various working groups to address the work of the HLKC. These working groups address life stages in health and learning and concentrate on settings, places, and communities where health and learning takes place. The Adult Working Group (AWG) is now one of 15 working groups addressing learning across the life span.
In 2006-2007, the AWG focused its research on adults with low literacy skills and immigrants and refugees. The AWG's work involves direct discussion with marginalized adults in the identified groups who could be directly helped through an effective knowledge exchange and translation with respect to health and learning. In this report, the AWG summarizes the outcomes of its consultations with immigrants, refugees and adults with literacy challenges and presents participants’ recommendations for strategies to address identified barriers. The working group also offers its recommendations for setting a knowledge agenda.
Series: Adult Working Group
The Adult Working Group is one of fifteen working groups within the Health and Learning Knowledge Centre (HLKC). The mandate of each working group is to build a knowledge agenda related to health and learning for the Canadian Council on Learning under whose auspices the HLKC was established. The Adult Working Group has focused its research on the health and learning of several different adult groups. This report addresses the health and learning of adults living with HIV / AIDS.
In its discussions with adults living with HIV / AIDS, the Working Group sought to identify themes, gaps, and needs related to health and learning as experienced by these adults. Ultimately, the group hopes their findings will lead to a greater understanding of the relationship between health and learning, and to initiatives to improve the health status of adults living with HIV/AIDS across Canada.
This report is organized into the following chapters:
- Consultation methodology
- Consultation outcomes
- Participants’ recommendations for strategies to address identified barriers
- Adult working group recommendations for setting a knowledge agenda
- Summary statement
The health-literacy connection
Authors: Doris E. Gillis
Have you ever left your doctor's office confused by the advice you were just given? At some time or other, most of us have felt limited in our knowledge and understanding of information related to our health.
Health literacy is a new concept that links our level of literacy with our ability to act upon health information and, ultimately, take control of our health. It builds upon the idea that both health and literacy are critical resources for everyday living.
Addressing health literacy means breaking down the barriers to health that low literacy creates
"The Boys' and Girls' Literacy: Closing the Gap" project is unique in that it aims to develop strategies that would particularly have a positive impact on boys' literacy. This holds substantial merit in that the strategies and methodologies selected to address the literacy performance of boys would not disadvantage girls. These strategies included literature circles, male mentors, and providing boy-friendly reading materials. The researchers based these decisions on current research in the fields of literacy and reading; gender and literacy; psychology; and curriculum.
Resources for Literacy Workers
Authors: Metro Toronto Movement for Literacy
This book is a resource for literacy workers. One of its focus is on the challenges of people having limited literacy skills when they attempt to access counselling services. It also includes information for workers who may be working with victims of abuse and violence.