The Digital Divide, Computer Use, Basic Skills and Employment

December 19th, 2008 by Maria Moriarty

The  National Research and Development Centre for adult literacy and numeracy, in the UK has  recently released a Resarch Summary – The  Digital Divide, Computer Use, Basic Skills and Employment outlining the findings of a  4 year long comparative study  of  digital skills, basic skills and employment  which was conducted in London, England and Protland, Oregon.

The study shows that lack of access to and low levels of use of  Informaton and Communications Technology (ICT) combinded with literacy need can have a negative effect on employability . The study suggests that literacy and basic skills provision alone does not appear to enhance employability but that  programming  that combines building digital skills and basic skills  is more likely to lead to enhanced employment opportunities.

This Research Summary makes for very interesting  and relevant reading, particularly for those of us in Ontario, where literacy and basic skills programming  is very closely linked to employment, as a component of Employment Ontario – Ontario’s Training and Employment Network.