ERIC Number: ED215282
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1981
Reference Count: 0
The Illiterate Elderly.
Americans aged 60 years and older now represent the largest age cohort of functional illiterates. Educational systems have not adequately addressed the needs of this group. Many older Americans, for whom English is a second language, need instruction in both English and basic literacy skills. Many older adults living at or near poverty levels have no high school diploma and experience great difficulty in finding employment. Adult basic education could provide work-related educational programs for these people. Because health is a key factor affecting older adult participation in education, educational programs in nursing homes and home-bound programs are needed to reach more elderly persons. This lack of education appears to affect the mental health of some older adults; thus, education for this group could improve their self-esteem. Older adults with little education view their lack of education as a problem, yet few are attracted to adult basic education classes. Although researchers have begun to identify the illiterate elderly in relation to their involvement in educational literacy activities, future research is needed to clarify and solve the problems of the illiterate elderly. (NRB)
Publication Type: Information Analyses; Reports - Research; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: Department of Health and Human Services, Washington, DC.
Authoring Institution: White House Conference on Aging, Washington, DC.
Identifiers: White House Conference on Aging
Note: Paper presented at the White House Conference on Aging (3rd, Washington, DC, November 30-December 3, 1981) and the Annual Meeting of the Adult Education Association of the U.S.A. (Anaheim, CA, October 29-November 2, 1981). For related documents, see CG 015 980-987 and CG 015 990-CG 016 022. Best copy available.