ERIC Number: ED473667
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2002-Jun
Numeracy in the Making: Twenty Years of Australian Adult Numeracy.
A project that focused on how the field of adult numeracy education had been shaped in Australia over the last 20 years sought answers to these research questions: (1) What does the past tell about adult literacy and numeracy policy, provision, and research? (2) Are Australians numerate? (3) What sort of numeracy activities do Australians engage in? and (4) What is the educational context of adult numeracy? Data included surveys completed in 1977, 1982, 1989, 1996, and 1997 and revealed how Australians measured up in relation to world numeracy standards. Findings related to quantitative literacy indicated that, internationally, Australians were probably fairly middling and groups in the society had scores that were predictably low. Data did not tell how numerate Australians were. Descriptions of work being done on numeracy practices--on how people use mathematics in daily lives--suggested that to be numerate was crucial in many ways, including getting and holding a job, being aware of critical safety procedures, to knowing how to use appropriate networks and mediators. Work on numeracy practices had begun to show the extent to which numeracy knowledge was situated and the importance of understanding the knowledge people had before providing possibly redundant or irrelevant learning. In different states and times, different theoretical or political frameworks shaped curricula in powerfully different ways. Australians learned to use knowledge of the field to construct conversations across the educational sectors and, while developing powerful foundational theory was important, leaving space to respond to local needs and strengths was, too. Other countries welcomed professional development and teaching resource initiatives of Australian adult numeracy practitioners. (Appendixes include a 118-item bibliography, interview questions, and abbreviations and acronyms.) (YLB)
Descriptors: Adult Basic Education, Adult Educators, Adult Literacy, Basic Skills, Comparative Analysis, Context Effect, Curriculum Development, Daily Living Skills, Developed Nations, Educational History, Educational Needs, Educational Research, Educational Trends, Foreign Countries, Foundations of Education, Needs Assessment, Numeracy, Professional Development
For full text: http://www.staff.vu.edu.au/alnarc/publications/02Johnston.pdf.
Publication Type: Historical Materials
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: Australian National Training Authority, Brisbane.
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Australia