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Given the complexity of teaching reading to adult learners—who have limited time available, can be at any level in their reading development, and are likely dealing with with multiple factors beyond academics—it's useful to have a summary of methods for helping adult learners make substantial gains in their reading skills.

Teaching Adults to Read: A Summary of Scientifically Based Research Principles, authored by Mary E. Curtis and John R. Kruidenier and published by the National Institue for Literacy and The Partnership for Reading in 2005, summarizes the principles and trends identified three years earlier in Research-Based Principles for Adult Basic Education Reading Instruction. Time has proved its claim that "the application of these research-based strategies will increase the likelihood of success in reading instruction."


  1. Introduction (pp. 1-3)
  2. Alphabetics (pp. 4-5)
  3. Fluency (p. 6)
  4. Vocabulary (pp. 7-8)
  5. Reading Comprehension (pp. 9-10)
  6. Putting it All Together (pp. 11-12)
Topic Area: 
ABE/Adult Education
Evidence-Based Reading Instruction (EBRI)
Media Type: 
Resource Type: 
Research/Evidence-Based Practice
PD Center: