OECD Skills Outlook 2013

First Results from the Survey of Adult Skills

image of OECD Skills Outlook 2013

This first OECD Skills Outlook presents the initial results of the Survey of Adult Skills (PIAAC), which evaluates the skills of adults in 22 OECD member countries and two partner countries. The PIAAC survey was designed to provide insights into the availability of some key skills and how they are used at work and at home through the direct assessment of key information processing skills: literacy, numeracy and problem-solving in technology-rich environments.  The book examines the social and economic context, the supply of  key information processing skills,  who has these skills at what level, the supply of and demand for these skills in the labour market,  the acquisition and maintenance of skills over a lifetime, and how proficiency in these skills translates into better economic and social outcomes.

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Key Skills and Economic and Social Well-Being

This chapter details how proficiency in literacy, numeracy and problem solving, as measured by the Survey of Adult Skills (PIAAC), is positively associated with other aspects of well-being, including labour market participation, employment, earnings, health, participation in associative or volunteer activities, and an individual’s sense of having influence on the political process. It suggests that improvements in the teaching of literacy and numeracy in schools and in programmes for adults with poor literacy and numeracy skills and limited familiarity with information and communication technologies may provide considerable economic returns for both individuals and society.

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