Journal of Learning for Development (Jul 2020)

Foundation Level Workplace Training Programmes

  • Anne Alkema

Journal volume & issue
Vol. 7, no. 2


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This paper outlines the scale of the adult literacy and numeracy issue in New Zealand and describes a policy intervention designed to upskill employees in workplaces to help resolve the issue for them. This is the Workplace Literacy and Numeracy (WLN) Fund, which enables around 7000 employees a year to complete a 25- to 80-hour learning programme, usually in their workplace and during work time. The paper also describes what happens in workplaces while programmes are underway, and the short-term wellbeing, social, and economic outcomes that occur for individual employees. In this context, literacy and numeracy relates to the way in which adults use skills that involve reading, writing, speaking, listening, and mathematics in everyday life. It also includes digital skills in relation to how adults engage and interact with Information and Communication Technologies (ICT). These skills are those that individuals need for learning, life, and work in the 21st Century. Keywords: adult literacy and numeracy, workplace-based learning, wellbeing, social and economic outcomes.