Publications

Literacy and Life Skills for Māori Adults - Further Investigation: Results from the Adult Literacy and Life Skills (ALL) Survey

Publication Details

This report, which complements Literacy and Life Skills for Maori Adults, investigates the extent to which the distribution of literacy among Maori adults is associated with a range of potential explanatory factors.

Author(s): Paul Satherley and Elliot Lawes, Research Division, Ministry of Education.

Date Published: August 2009

Please consider the environment before printing the contents of this report. This report is available as a download (please refer to the 'Downloads/Links' inset box, top right).
Please consider the environment before printing the contents of this report.

Executive Summary

Literacy and Life Skills for Māori Adults – Further Investigation takes a first step in deeper analysis of the data on the Māori adult population of the Adult Literacy and Life Skills (ALL) Survey. It describes a model that treats document literacy skill as the outcome of a range of potential explanatory factors. This enables us to understand more about the nature and strength of associations with Māori adults’ document literacy skills when several different factors are taken into account.

A stepwise process of progressively adding further variables is able to generate findings that illuminate the interactions between explanatory factors and document literacy skills.

The following points summarise the findings from the regression model. The analysis behind the message of each of the points below controls for all other variables in the model. This contrasts with the findings of Literacy and Life Skills for Māori Adults and the graphs of Appendix 2 which display single factor analysis and do not control for other variables.

  • Māori adults who had spent more time in formal education on average had higher document literacy skills when taking all other factors considered into account.
  • When compared with those of middle age, both younger and older Māori adults tended to have lower document literacy skills. However, when also controlling for time spent in formal education this age effect became non-significant. However, older Māori beneficiaries tended to have lower document literacy skills than younger Māori beneficiaries.
  • Māori men had similar document literacy skills to Māori women. However, when compared with Māori women who had similar income, Māori men tended to have lower document literacy skills. Māori men tended to have spent less time in formal education than Māori women of comparable income and this was strongly associated with their lower document literacy skills.
  • Document literacy skills were not significantly associated with being employed. But those whose main income source was wages and those whose main income source was “other” (not wages or benefits) tended to have higher document literacy skills. However, having wages as the main income source was associated with greater time spent in formal education and this was strongly associated with higher document literacy skills.
  • Adult Māori students tended to have higher document literacy skills. However, being a student was associated with greater time spent in formal education and this was strongly associated with higher document literacy skills.

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