Improving Adult Literacy Instruction: Options for Practice and Research

The National Academies Press has just made “Improving Adult Literacy Instruction: Options for Practice and Research” (  available. You can download the .pdf for free if you register on their site. (Look on the left hand side, about half way down, under ordering options.)

This is a huge resource document and the contents include:

  1. Introduction
  2. Foundations of Reading and Writing
  3. Literacy Instruction for Adults
  4. Principles of Learning for Instructional Design
  5. Motivation, Engagement, and Persistence
  6. Technology to Promote Adult Literacy
  7. Learning, Reading, and Writing Disabilities
  8. Literacy Development of English Language Learners
  9. Conclusions and Recommendations



A: Biographical Sketches of Committee Members and Staff

B: Literacy in a Digital Age

C: Search Procedures and Reviewed Studies of Adult Literacy Instruction

D: Interventions to Develop the Component Literacy Skills of Low Literate Adults


This is an in-depth report with multiple individual and organizational authors. It’s worth going through it chapter by chapter and discussing the ideas with others as you go. I’ve just downloaded it and I’m looking forward to delving into it!


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Sarah Elaine Eaton is a faculty member in the Werklund School of Education, University of Calgary, Canada.

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