ERIC Number: ED311948
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1989
Reference Count: N/A
The Center for Advancing Technology Succeeds with New Literacy Program.
Bailey, Charles; Rentz, William D.
As part of an effort to combat the persistent problem of adult illiteracy, the Center for Advancing Technology was initiated at Piedmont Community College (PCC) in North Carolina and charged with the design of an effective model of rural, adult education for use throughout the state. The first step in the development of the center's literacy program was a national conference on adult education, at which educational leaders compiled a list of basic assumptions about illiteracy. These assumptions included the following: (1) on a yearly basis, the number of adults seeking high school equivalency diplomas is less than the number of dropouts; (2) the dropout rate is not decreasing significantly; (3) most illiterates spend more energy concealing their shortcoming than it would take to overcome it; and (4) most illiterates want to be able to read, write and perform mathematical computations. Participants also considered ways to alleviate the problem, including implementing new and stimulating instructional methods, providing transportation to class sites, making child care available at class sites, and making class schedules convenient for potential students. Having defined the scope of their adult literacy program, the center then divided its implementation into management and instruction segments. A management team gathered the best and most versatile courseware, including hardware and software, to use in an adult computer lab at PCC. The lab provided orientation, instruction, drilling, tests, and learning styles surveys and allowed students to receive immediate and non-judgemental feedback. While the management team was developing the lab, recruiting/instruction teams were formed, consisting of teachers to integrate regular and computer sessions, recruiters/drivers, and child care personnel. For the 11 weeks of the program, two 3-hour classes were held at PCC and two local elementary schools. Based on such evidence as a 67% retention rate at the PCC site, the program was considered a success by the center, which is proposing to continue and expand its efforts. (VVC)
Publication Type: Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: Piedmont Community Coll., Yanceyville, NC. Center for Advancing Technology.