ProLiteracy Announces Its New National Research Agenda
Posted on May 19, 2020

ProLiteracy, the largest adult literacy and basic education membership organization in the United States, announces its new national research agenda, which outlines ProLiteracy’s commitment to adult education and literacy research. The Research Agenda provides a vision statement, articulates a research focus, and identifies key roles that ProLiteracy can play in promoting and advocating for high quality research that informs the adult education field and improves practice.

ProLiteracy will play a meaningful role in advocating for, initiating, facilitating, and sustaining research efforts that can increase and accelerate learning outcomes for adults seeking to improve literacy, numeracy, or language skills or who lack a high school credential.

“With a commitment to improved learner outcomes, ProLiteracy’s research priority is to investigate a wide range of factors that can improve program quality,” says Kevin Morgan, president and CEO of ProLiteracy. “The research should lead to deeper understandings of or direct applications to challenges and problems in program and instructional design and delivery and contribute to measurable improvements in adult learner outcomes. We strive to publish research that is relevant, actionable, applicable, and accessible to practitioners and also of use to learners, policy makers, and funders.”

Activities that can advance these efforts include publishing the research journal: Adult Literacy Education: The International Journal of Literacy, Language, and Numeracy; and commissioning and publishing research briefs—concise, short summaries of research on topics of interest to the field. In addition, ProLiteracy will commission white papers that synthesize research as a way to propose initiatives or guide policy related to program improvement, provide sustained professional development and training to help teachers and program managers learn about and apply research findings in their practice, and offer advisement, oversite, and feedback on research activities implemented through ProLiteracy funding or facilitation.

The Research Agenda is part of ProLiteracy’s expanded initiative to conduct and share primary and secondary research with a wide adult education audience in the United States and internationally. “This is just one step ProLiteracy is taking towards providing adult education practitioners with the research they need to help them provide quality services to learners and also advocate with policy makers and funders,” Morgan added.


About ProLiteracy
ProLiteracy Worldwide, the recipient of the 2019 David M. Rubenstein Prize of the Library of Congress Literacy Awards Program, advances and supports programs to help adults acquire literacy skills needed to function more effectively in their daily lives. It has 1,000 member programs across 50 states and works with 30 partners in 25 countries to provide a wide range of adult literacy and basic education services to vulnerable populations. ProLiteracy builds capacity among frontline literacy providers by modeling proven instructional approaches, developing affordable, evidence-based learning resources, and providing professional development and technical assistance. For more than 60 years, ProLiteracy has scaled successful practices and driven advocacy efforts, resulting in a broad and sustained effort to improve and advance adult literacy. For more information, visit