So after 6 months training, assessments and volunteering I have successfully completed my ITALL PDA (Introduction to Tutoring in Adult Literacies Learning). I have really enjoyed the course and have met some great people already through it. The Scottish Survey of Adult Literacies 2009 found that overall the Scottish population has a good level of literacy skills in line with international expectations. While around 25% of the adult population would benefit from improving their literacy skills, around 3.6% of the Scottish population has very limited capabilities. Low literacies are often linked to poverty and are likely to adversely affect people's health and well-being, financial status and ability to participate in society. This is no small matter. It impacts on every area of an individual's life and consequently in their communities.

I intend to play a very small part in improving adult literacy levels in the area where I live and work, Fife. However, it pained me today to read about my homeland which according to a new report has 40% of NI pupils leaving school without basic reading, writing and numeracy skills. I am shocked by this, and confused as to the reasons. Only 2 months ago, BBC news reported that Northern Ireland was 6th in the world for primary teaching standards in maths! Something (or someone?) does not add up correctly. Either way, I like to believe that many opportunities exist for those who wish to improve their literacy levels and increasingly we must offer easy access to these opportunities. Technology offers new ways to engage learners and explain things through new and relevant methods. And that leads me onto my next step in my lifelong learning journey.. 

As I complete my Literacy tutoring course, I have embarked on something entirely different. An online course on E-learning and Digital Culture. My hope and intention is to somehow figure out a way to converge the two. Would love to hear from those who are further down the track than me.


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