Improving Literacy at Work

By Alison Wolf, Karen Evans

Contributors: Katerina Ananiadou, Liam Aspin, Andrew Jenkins, Sue Southwood, Edmund Waite

© 2011 – Routledge

210 pages | 16 B/W Illus.

Purchasing Options:
Paperback: 9780415548724
pub: 2010-11-08
US Dollars$50.95
Hardback: 9780415548687
pub: 2010-11-08
US Dollars$150.00

e–Inspection Copy

About the Book

Modern societies demand high levels of literacy. The written word is pervasive; individuals with poor literacy skills are deeply disadvantaged; and governments are increasingly pre-occupied with the contribution that skills can make to economic growth. As a result, the basic skills of adult workers are of concern as never before, a focus for workplace and education policy and practice.

While Improving Literacy at Work builds on detailed research from the UK, the issue is a universal one and rising skill requirements mean the conclusions drawn will be of equal interest elsewhere in Europe, USA, Canada, Australia and New Zealand. The research findings have very direct implications and practical relevance for teaching and learning, as this valuable book demonstrates, providing clear advice on how to develop effective provision and how best to support learners at work.

Throughout the study, the authors address the following fundamental questions:

  • How do adults’ literacy skills impact on their working lives, and on the enterprises where they work?
  • How can we develop these essential skills in the workforce?
  • When and how can literacy instruction change individuals’ employability and engagement with further learning?

Essential reading for trainers and managers in industry, teachers, researchers and lecturers in adult and further education and stakeholders implementing evidence-based policy, this book maps the fundamental changes taking place in workplace literacy.

Table of Contents

Introduction Part I: What are the Issues? 1. Literacy Learning at Work 2. Perspectives and Key Concepts 3. The Effects of Literacy Development in the Workplace Part II: The Findings 4. The Challenges of Implementing Literacy Learning in the Workplace 5. Literacy Learning at Work: The Benefits to Individuals 6. Literacy Learning, Workplace Practices and Lives Beyond Work 7. The Organizational Impact of Literacy Learning at Work 8. The Interplay of Formal and Informal Learning at Work Part III: The Wider Context 9. The Findings in International Context 10. Improving Literacy Learning in and through Work

About the Authors

Alison Wolf is Sir Roy Griffiths Professor of Public Sector Management at King's College London and Visiting Professorial Fellow at the Institute of Education, University of London, UK.

Karen Evans is Professor of Education in Lifelong Learning in the Department of Lifelong and Comparative Education at the Institute of Education, University of London, UK.

About the Series

Improving Learning

The Improving Learning series showcases findings from projects within ESRC’s Teaching and Learning Research Programme (TLRP) – the UK’s largest ever coordinated educational research initiative. Each book is explicitly designed to support ‘evidence-informed’ decisions in educational practice and policy-making. In particular, they combine rigorous social and educational science with high awareness of the significance of the issues being researched.



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Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
EDUCATION / Adult & Continuing Education
EDUCATION / Non-Formal Education
EDUCATION / Organizations & Institutions
EDUCATION / Research