How can an adult literacy tutoring program help participants build confidence and meet their goals?
Australian Journal of Language and Literacy
Australian Literacy Educators' Association
School of Education
Low literacy in adulthood can be a powerful barrier to opportunity. Our research explored how participation in a free adult literacy program that provides dyadic support can help participants to build confidence and meet their unique literacy goals. We conducted in-depth interviews with 15 randomly-selected adult literacy learners who participated in the program. Respondents had diverse literacy skill gaps and needs, and the program helped them to begin to address these issues. Respondents' learning goals were more typically directly linked to study or work requirements rather than social needs, and some respondents demonstrated an ongoing commitment to improving their literacy beyond the program, showing an internal locus of control and a lifelong learner orientation. Improvement in literacy for vocational needs had a tangible influence on respondents' working lives. Some respondents showed an ongoing autonomous effort to build their literacy skills that was related to confidence gained through program participation.