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Adult Learning and Literacy Research Group ALCR: Adult Literacy and Communication Research Group


Which Demographic Factors Predict Low Literacy Levels?

In this study, funded by the Ministry of Education, the ALCR team undertook a statistical analysis of demographic factors to determine which (if any) predicted low literacy. The NZ data from the International Adult Literacy Survey (IALS) was assessed and extrapolated to the 1996 and 2001 Census to explore the relationships between demographic factors and low literacy levels. A research report was generated outlining detailed findings. This study was then followed by a further interpretation of the IALS data analysis report, also commissioned by the Ministry of Education, supporting the Ministry’s on-going communication with adult literacy providers and other stakeholder groups through the development of a summary findings report.

Analysis of NZ Data from IALS

Culligan, N., Arnold, G., Noble, A. & Sligo, F.X. (2004). Analysis of New Zealand data from the International Adult Literacy Survey; Demographic predictors of low literacy proficiency. Department of Communication and Journalism, Massey University, N.Z. Report commissioned by the N.Z. Ministry of Education, Wellington.
We reproduce the executive summary and the full report here with permission of the Ministry of Education.