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All Children Reading by 2015: From Assessment to Action Washington, DC April 12-14, 2010 New Technologies and Reading within EFA Trends and Evidence Prof.

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Presentation on theme: "All Children Reading by 2015: From Assessment to Action Washington, DC April 12-14, 2010 New Technologies and Reading within EFA Trends and Evidence Prof."— Presentation transcript:

1 All Children Reading by 2015: From Assessment to Action Washington, DC April 12-14, 2010 New Technologies and Reading within EFA Trends and Evidence Prof. Dan Wagner International Literacy Institute University of Pennsylvania

2 Main points 1. Technology and literacy: Possible? 2. Trends: Fiscal and human investments 3.Can it be implemented? Examples from India and South Africa 4. Conclusions

3 1. Technology and literacy Many say impossible, because… Infrastructure is not available Costs are too high Illiterates can’t use technology Technology can’t really fight illiteracy Current evidence suggests the contrary… …Namely, that technology and literacy can and should go together

4 2. Spending on ICTs is increasing worldwide… ICT Spending by Region USD trillions Overall Global ICT Spending USD trillions WISTA, 2008

5 2. …but there is a problem of allocation While “digital divide” is decreasing between countries… Digital divide is increasing within countries. More than 90% of ICT investments in education in LDCs go to secondary and higher education. This allocation excludes more than half the population (1-2 billion people) in poor countries.

6 1. Access Improving dramatically (esp. mobile phones), but limited learning impact 2. Connectivity Improving moderately, mainly urban areas 3. Content (local languages and subject matter) Modest efforts, and almost none among the poor 4. Building reading competencies Rare Our goal should be: Focus on EFA and reading, by building on local learning competencies 2. The kinds of ICT inputs vary greatly

7 3. India: Empowering a regional language Emphasis on learning Telugu as main implementation language. – ICT support the value of local languages Learning approach - Relevance of content - High quality instruction - Extremely “user-friendly”

8 3. India: Significant learning gains Two evaluations  Location, near Hyderabad  Ages: years  Little or no schooling  Ave. 2 hours/week  Results: More than twice as fast rate of learning as control.  ALSO, replicated on young children in Grades 1-2  Costs: module production, about US$200K Learning rate per hour Reading Math ICT-based Control, no-ICT

9 3. South Africa: Limpopo Province High poverty, poor schooling 4 official languages in the province Mass Literacy Campaign Multimedia cost: US$250K for basic literacy 3 quick multimedia clips on learning approach o The storyline and language choice o Understanding words in context o Learning to write

10 3. South Africa: Introduction and language choice

11 3. South Africa: Understanding words in context

12 3. South Africa: Learning to write

13 4. Conclusions Investments in ICTs are growing, but much is going to the wrong places Particular EFA needs (especially local languages and skill levels) must be carefully addressed Near-term efforts should be based on available hardware and human infrastructure, and not await ‘pie in the sky’ solutions. Increased ICT investments should be made in learning rather than hardware More evidence needs needs to be gathered on learning outcomes of ICTs


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