ERIC Number: ED357917
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1992-Dec
Literacy in Rural America: A Study of Current Needs and Practices.
Bailey, Gwen; And Others
This report examines rural practice in adult literacy programs and estimates the extent and nature of rural illiteracy. Surveys were sent to 3,287 rural literacy programs; more than 700 program directors responded for a return rate of 22 percent. In addition, 150 program directors and key state literacy contacts were interviewed by telephone. Results are presented on the following topics: (1) measures of rural illiteracy; (2) who provides rural literacy programs; (3) current practices; (4) characteristics of rural clients; (5) instructional methods and materials; (6) family literacy programs; (7) the character of the rural environment; (8) how literacy programs network with volunteers and social services agencies; and (9) examples of innovative rural literacy programs. A final chapter presents recommendations directed at local program directors, state departments or coalitions, and the national leadership. This report concludes that: (1) if literacy is defined to be high school completion, rural rates of illiteracy exceed urban ones nearly universally; (2) most literacy programs are underfunded, understaffed, isolated, and ill-equipped to deal with the range of learning problems and needs of their clients; (3) because social problems are defined from an urban context, rural areas find current efforts to expand literacy services of limited value; and (4) the largest single need in rural literacy programs is access to information and training. Appendices include survey and interview protocols, list of rural literacy programs interviewed, rural illiteracy rates by states and age groups, results of the Young Adult Literacy Assessment, and a description of rural literacy providers. (LP)
Descriptors: Adult Basic Education, Adult Literacy, Educational Attainment, Educational Needs, Elementary Secondary Education, Illiteracy, Literacy Education, Program Descriptions, Program Effectiveness, Rural Areas, Rural Education, Rural Sociology, Rural Urban Differences
Rural Clearinghouse for Lifelong Education and Development, College Court Building, Kansas State University, Manhattan, KS 66506-6001.
Publication Type: Information Analyses; Reports - Research; Tests/Questionnaires
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation, Chicago, IL.
Authoring Institution: Kansas State Univ., Manhattan. Rural Clearinghouse for Lifelong Education and Development.