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Equipped for the Future was established when the National Institute for Literacy was asked to find out what adults needed to be fully literate. EFF went to adult learners nationwide and asked them what literacy meant for their lives. They learned that for adults, literacy impacts their roles as parents, community members, and workers.

Equipped for the Future says that in order to fulfill responsibilities in these three roles, adults must be able to:

Meet these 4 purposes
  • Access - to information so adults can orient themselves in the world.
  • Voice - to be able to express ideas and opinions with the confidence they will be heard and taken into account.
  • Independent Action - to be able to solve problems and make decisions on one's own, acting independently, without having to rely on others.
  • Bridge to the Future - learn how to learn so adults can keep up with the world as it changes.

Accomplish these common activities

  • Gather, analyze and use information
  • Manage resources
  • Work within the big picture
  • Work together
  • Provide leadership
  • Guide and support others
  • Seek guidance and support from others
  • Develop and express sense of self
  • Respect others and value diversity
  • Exercise rights and responsibilities
  • Create and pursue a vision and goals
  • Keep pace with change

Demonstrate these generative skills

  • Communication Skills
  • Read critically
  • Convey ideas in writing
  • Speak so others can understand
  • Listen actively
  • View critically

Interpersonal skills

  • Cooperate with others
  • Advocate and influence
  • Resolve conflict and negotiate
  • Guide
  • Lead

Decision-making skills

  • Plan
  • Research
  • Solve problems
  • Use mathematical concepts and techniques to solve problems
  • Use technology

Lifelong Learning Skills

  • Reflect and evaluate
  • Learn in new ways

Understand and be able to use these knowledge domains

  • How we grow and develop
  • How groups and teams work
  • How systems work
  • Rights and responsibilities
  • Culture, values and ethics
  • How the past shapes the world we live in

For further reading on EFF, you can call the National Institure for Literacy (1-800-228-8813) and request the following free publications:

The Equipped for the Future special collection contains more information.

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