Literacy For The Twenty-First Century

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Eight of the thirteen chapters describe investigations of adults' literacy skills based on analyses of the National Adult Literacy Survey. The studies describe how work contributes to literacy, associations between literacy skills and reading practices, reciprocal effects of education and literacy, gender differences in literacy abilities, the relationship between literacy and voting behavior, the literacy skills of adults having one or more learning disabilities, and the construct validity of the NALS. One chapter summarizes the major findings of the NALS and another discusses federal educational policies that shaped the NALS. Two additional chapters describe research programs pertaining to dimensions of literacy that are significant to a more comprehensive understanding of literacy in the United States: family literacy education and health care.

The National Adult Literacy Survey has provided literacy researchers and practitioners with a wealth of knowledge about American adults' literacy proficiencies. Literacy for the 21st Century was developed with the idea that the NALS contains useful information to inform public educational policy, suggest new directions for literacy research, and assist in adult literacy education program development. The ideas presented in this book should enable policymakers, social leaders, and educators to more fully consider national assessment data, thereby prompting actions necessary to enable all citizens to achieve greater opportunities in their work and lives.

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Editorial Reviews

A dozen secondary studies of the data from the renowned Survey of the US in the early 1990s. Four look at the Survey itself and public policy on literacy. Others consider adults' reading practices and their associations with literacy proficiencies, community college literacy, literacy gender gaps, and family literacy and adult education. Annotation c. by Book News, Inc., Portland, Or.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780275957865
  • Publisher: ABC-CLIO, Incorporated
  • Publication date: 9/30/1998
  • Pages: 224
  • Lexile: 1440L (what's this?)
  • Product dimensions: 6.00 (w) x 9.00 (h) x 0.63 (d)

Meet the Author

M Cecil Smith is Associate Professor of Educational Psychology, Northern Illinois University.

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Table of Contents

1 Introduction: Adult Literacy Research and the National Adult Literacy Survey 3
2 Literacy in America: A Brief Overview of the NALS 13
3 Adult Education and Literacy Public Policy: What It Is and How It Is Shaped 29
4 Dimensionality and Construct Validity of the NALS Assessment 37
5 Work, School, and Literacy 61
6 Adults' Reading Practices and Their Associations with Literacy Proficiencies 79
7 Literacy Gender Gaps: Evidence from the National Adult Literacy Survey 95
8 Literacy Habits and Political Participation 109
9 Community College Literacy: Is the Middle Right? 125
10 Literacy Selection and Literacy Development: Structural Equation Models of the Reciprocal Effects of Education and Literacy 139
11 Literacy Proficiency among Adults with Self-Reported Learning Disabilities 159
12 Family Literacy and Adult Education: Project FLAME 175
13 Adult Literacy and Health Care 195
Index 207
Contributors 211
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