ERIC Number: ED349478
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1992-Oct
Reference Count: N/A
Beyond the School Doors.
BCEL Newsletter for the Business & Literacy Communities, n33 p1,6-7,10 Oct 1992
From November 1989 to June 1990, the Educational Testing Service (ETS) conducted an individually administered assessment of a representative sampling of some 6,000 adults to determine the literacy skills of the 20,037,087 persons being served by the Job Training Partnership Act (JTPA) and Employment Service/Unemployment Insurance (ES/UI) programs, both administered by the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL). ETS's approach to measuring and defining adult literacy was based on a new scaling system specifically designed to reflect the realities of everyday adult life and work. ETS tested for proficiency in three domains: prose, document, and quantitative literacy. Individual scores were plotted along a vertical scale ranging from 0 to 500 for each of the domains measured. To interpret the results, ETS grouped tasks and associated skills into five levels, showing the distribution of proficiencies across the levels. The survey's major overall finding was that these two DOL population groups, which constituted a significant proportion of job seekers, were deficient in their literacy skills to an alarming degree. The literacy skills of 7.5 to 8.7 million individuals were at the lowest proficiency levels. Across the three scales, women in both DOL programs performed somewhat higher, young people aged 16 to 25 had significantly lower literacy proficiency, and Blacks and Hispanics performed about the same, though both scored well below Whites. Data show a very strong correlation between education completion level and literacy proficiency. (YLB)
Descriptors: Adult Basic Education, Adult Literacy, Blacks, Educational Attainment, Educational Research, Educational Status Comparison, Employment Programs, Federal Programs, Females, Hispanic Americans, Illiteracy, Job Training, Males, National Surveys, Participant Characteristics, Racial Differences, Sex Differences, Underemployment, Unemployment, Unemployment Insurance, Whites
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: Business Council for Effective Literacy, New York, NY.
Identifiers - Laws, Policies, & Programs: Job Training Partnership Act 1982