Functional Illiteracy: Ministering to Functionally Illiterate Adults by Employing Modern Educational Philosophies
This study is meant to familiarize pastors and ministerial educators with functional illiteracy in America. Often this subject is addressed in terms of youth who are functionally illiterate or non-English speakers who are functionally illiterate in English. However, this study is directed at working with English-speaking adults who are functionally illiterate. This issue is addressed by first explaining the evolution of the term “functionally illiterate” into what it means today. Secondly, various American studies on the subject of adult functional illiteracy are analyzed and applied to the challenges faced by a minister of the gospel. This study then identifies the various schools of thought regarding reading education. These methods and philosophies are explored because educators of reading have developed many great ways to teach those who are illiterate. Their theories can then be applied to the specific needs and tendencies of adults. All of this research points to the need of functionally illiterate adults for an education which acknowledges their personal skill sets while enabling them to utilize the information being taught.