ERIC Number: ED361500
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1992-Mar
Reference Count: N/A
Life at the Margins: Profiles of Adults with Low Literacy Skills. Contractor Report, Adult Literacy and New Technologies: Tools for a Lifetime.
Tennessee Univ., Knoxville. Center for Literacy Studies.
As part of an ongoing assessment on adult literacy and the new technologies, this study profiled the similarities and differences among Appalachian and Californian adults with low literacy skills. Two teams of researchers each profiled six adults with low literacy skills. The study population was selected so as to reflect a diverse mix of ages, genders, social and ethnic backgrounds, and literacy skills. Despite their great diversity, the 12 persons profiled had all been marginalized economically and culturally by society, had faced hard times, expressed a strong desire to become more self-reliant, hoped to improve their literacy skills and thereby obtain a better life for themselves and their children, and shared common strategies for overcoming their illiteracy (including the building of social networks and use of "readers"). Differences among the native and nonnative English speakers profiled were found in relation to the following areas: uses of technology, impact of first language usage, connections between English-as-a-Second-Language literacy, and family relationships, and the clarity of cultural identity possessed by nonnative speakers in contrast to the white and African Americans profiled. The implications of these differences for literacy education were discussed. (Appended are a literature review with 75 references, reflections on the research, and biographical sketches of the researchers.) (MN)
Publication Type: Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: Congress of the U.S., Washington, DC. Office of Technology Assessment.
Authoring Institution: Tennessee Univ., Knoxville. Center for Literacy Studies.
Identifiers - Location: California