Document Type


Publication Date



Adult literacy, Computer assisted instruction, Digital divide


This presentation draws from findings based on a three-year research project with the goal of achieving greater digital equity for adult learners in libraries. This project addresses digital problem solving, a unique task adults face in today’s age of ubiquitous technology use. Marginalized and under-resourced digital users face challenges of access not only to high-speed Internet but also to getting the support they need for their digital learning and problem solving. Libraries are uniquely positioned to support these learners. However, this calls for techniques and tools to assist digital users in accomplishing their goals as they continue to develop their abilities. Helping learners build on their current practices means moving beyond one-size-fits-all solutions and calls into doubt computer-based skill-and-drill activities in favor of embedding digital learning and problem solving within meaningful everyday needs and supporting learners as they try, learn, practice and cycle through problem solving. Meeting the digital needs of the adult community means not just providing access to devices and internet, but also providing support for digitally problem solving around their personal, familial, civic, educational, and professional lives.


Roundtable presented at the Adolescent, Family, and Community Literacy: Mobilizing Strength Based Pedagogies conference. Tucson, AZ.

Persistent Identifier