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ERIC Number: ED511970
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2010-Jun
Pages: 32
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 143
Emerging Technologies in Adult Literacy and Language Education
Warschauer, Mark; Liaw, Meei-Ling
National Institute for Literacy
Although information and communication technologies have become an integral part of life in the United States, they have not yet been adequately integrated into adult language and literacy programs. This raises concerns because of the potential value of technology for enhancing learning and because of the vital role of technological proficiency as a gatekeeper for occupational success and full civic participation. Research findings on the impact of technology in education are mixed, but a few studies among adult learners suggest benefits worth exploring. This paper describes the potential contribution of emerging technologies to adult literacy and language education and the opportunities and challenges involved in incorporating these technologies into adult education programs. Various emerging technologies (those arising or undergoing fundamental transformation in the last decade) are described, ranging from audio and video production to games, wikis and blogs, to mobile devices, cell phones and open-source software. Relevant research is reviewed, and the costs, difficulties and advantages of deploying various technological approaches in adult education are discussed. Although current research is insufficient to urge wholesale adoption of the technologies described, many--especially low-cost mobile devices--warrant further investigation as potentially valuable tools for adult educators and learners.
National Institute for Literacy. 1775 I Street NW Suite 730, Washington, DC 20006-2401. Tel: 800-228-8813; Tel: 202-233-2025; Fax: 301-470-1244; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: Adult Basic Education; Adult Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: National Institute for Literacy; MPR Associates, Berkeley, CA.