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Literacy in PEI


Literacy Facts

  • the reading skills of 30% of PEI adults are so limited that they can't deal with most printed material
  • an additional 35% of PEI adults need materials written clearly in plain language
  • reading skills of seasonal workers are lower than year-round workers
  • fewer than half the workers in farming, manufacturing and other primary industries have reading skills that allow them to meet most everyday reading demands
  • 80% of Canadian seniors cannot read well enough to deal with everyday literacy tasks
  • literacy levels get lower from west to east across Canada

from the International Adult Literacy Survey (IALS), 1996

 


Literacy Skill Levels

Level 1 people

  • have great difficulty reading and usually know they have a problem

Level 2 people

  • can read, but not well
  • can deal with material that is simple and clearly laid out
  • often do not recognize their limitation

Level 3 people

  • can read well, but have some problems with more complex tasks, however, many jobs require a higher skill level

Level 4/5 people

  • have a high level of literacy and can meet most reading demands

Kinds of Literacy

Prose - knowledge and skills needed to understand and use information from texts, such as news stories, magazines and novels

Document - knowledge and skills needed to find and use information from documents, such as job applications, maps and tables

Quantitative - knowledge and skills needed to apply arithmetic operations, such as balancing a chequebook or figuring out a tip


Literacy Skills of Islanders

Percentage of people at each literacy skill level by PEI federal riding:

Cardigan 1 2 3 4/5
Prose
30% 35% 29% 6%
Document
34% 32% 25% 8%
Quantitative
27% 36% 30% 7%
Egmont 1 2 3 4/5
Prose
32% 35% 27% 6%
Document
36% 32% 24% 8%
Quantitative
30% 35% 29% 6%
Hillsborough 1 2 3 4/5
Prose
25% 34% 33% 8%
Document
26% 33% 30% 11%
Quantitative
30% 35% 35% 9%
Malpeque 1 2 3 4/5
Prose
28% 35% 30% 7%
Document
31% 32% 27% 10%
Quantitative
24% 36% 32% 8%

Projections based on International Adult Literacy Survey data, 1997 *

About 30% of PEI adults have very low literacy skills. This is higher than the national average of 25%. In some areas of PEI, the percentage is as high as 33%.

 

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Success Stories

My name is Terry Affleck and I learned to read at the age of 63 and today at 65 I am enrolled at Holland College to prepare for my GED. More...



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