Tuesday, 9 June 2020

Reading and Discussion Group - 5.30 pm Thursday 25 June 2020

Maintain and support your professional connections and engagement with recent research in the field of Adult Language Literacy and Numeracy by joining the NSWALNC Reading and Discussion Group.

Reading and Discussion Group Article - Adults’ numeracy practices in fluid and unstable contexts—An agenda for education, policy and research?
Keiko Yasukawa & Jeff Evans 
Zeitschrift für Weiterbildungsforschung volume 42pages343–356(2019)
Register: To join the Reading and Discussion Group and/or AGM please register at https://www.trybooking.com/BJXTT 


Numeracy practices are always dependent on the social context in which they emerge. These contexts, however, are unstable because of a range of technological and socio-political changes. How does this instability affect people’s agency in the world? After reviewing key approaches to numeracy practices research, we distil key findings from recent numeracy studies. We introduce the concept of the numerate environment to examine the context in which opportunities, supports and demands present themselves for people’s numeracy development, explaining how cultural-historical activity theory can be used to analyse the effects of changes in numerate environments. We consider examples of social trends likely to effect such changes and conclude with implications of shifts in people’s numerate environment for future educational provision, policy and research.

Discussion question

1.     What is your understanding of the numerate environment? What do the authors argue is the value or usefulness of this concept?

2.     The authors claim that people’s contexts of numeracy practices are often unstable, and this in turn affects people’s agency in the world. What do they mean by this?

3.     What examples can you give of an unstable context of numeracy practices? How does the concept of the numerate environment help you to understand the effect on people’s agency in this unstable context?

4.     From the discussions of the article, what questions would you like the authors to address?

5.     How is the concept of  unstable contexts of numeracy practices reflected in your practice and the curricula you deliver?