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Adult Skills in Focus

Adult Skills in Focus is a series of policy-oriented notes designed to describe the results from the OECD Survey of Adult Skills in a concise, user-friendly way.

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What does age have to do with skills proficiency?

The Survey of Adult Skills finds that adults aged 55 to 65 are less proficient in literacy and numeracy than adults aged 25 to 34. But differences in skills proficiency that are related to age vary widely across countries, implying that skills policies can affect the evolution of proficiency over a lifetime. And while older adults are generally less proficient than younger adults, they do no worse – and often better – than younger adults in terms of labour market outcomes.

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