ERIC Number: ED236576
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1983
Reference Count: 0
An Examination of the Adult Performance Level Project and Its Effects upon Adult Literacy Education in the United States.
Kazemek, Francis E.
The Adult Performance Level (APL) project, which developed and validated a series of objectives for adult functional competency free from school-based notions of literacy, is the most widely accepted approach to adult literacy and adult literacy education in the United States today. Yet a review of the project and its impact reveals that the APL criteria and their resulting objectives, instructional strategies, and programs are insupportable by empirical evidence and detrimental to both individuals and society. The APL's assertion that researchers were able to specify what all groups or subcultures in the United States must be able to do to be labelled functionally competent is suspect. Researchers' norms do not necessarily reflect the goals, needs, skills, and aspirations of adults rejecting traditional middle-class goals. In addition, by ignoring the moral and ethical aspects of adult literacy in their effort to describe a value-neutral situation, the APL project authors actually prescribe a form of literacy education that perpetuates the status quo. Finally, if the APL project is a form of persuasive discourse, it cannot discuss adult literacy from a position of science and research. The APL project has failed to consider all the available facts concerning the complex nature of adult functional competency. (HOD)
Publication Type: Opinion Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers: Adult Performance Level