Towards a Profile of the Adult Literacy Sector

by Lindsay Kennedy

For many years, people in the literacy field have talked about professionalization. Some adult literacy educators are in favour, while others are sceptical.Does this mean that everyone working in literacy—paid staff and volunteers—would have to meet a set of standards? How would the field benefit? How would individual educators benefit? Would professionalization help to raise theprofile of adult literacy in Canada?

We can’t answer these or other questions without conducting a thorough and systematic study of our field. The first step in this study is to understand who works in our field now, and under what conditions. The Movement for Canadian Literacy (MCL) hired Sue Folinsbee to conduct an initial review of working conditions for adult literacy educators. Sue looked at major research papers and reports and talked to key informants from our coalitions and other organizations. She collected information about how people are hired, their education and their ongoing training. She also looked at models from a range of related sectors from Canada and other countries.

A project advisory committee is reviewing and analyzing the data. Our next step is to develop a proposal for a thorough sector study. For more information contact the project manager, Lindsay Kennedy, at

placeholder placeholder placeholder
Valid HTML 4.01! Valid CSS! placeholder Creative Commons License This work is licensed under a
Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 2.5 Canada License