Factors influencing adult learning in literacy classes in Tanzania: a case study of Kibondo district

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University of Dar es Salaam
The purpose of the study was to examine the implementation of literacy activities in Kibondo district and determine the factors that influence adult learning in literacy classes. The study investigated the variables which were assumed to influence effective adult teaching-learning process. Such variables were: learners' motives and their characteristics, quality of teachers, instructional methods and materials, learning environment and attitudes of both teachers and learners towards adult learning. The Open System Model, developed by Katz and Kahn (1966) was employed to guide the investigation.The study was conducted in six adult education centres with 79 respondents who included adult learners, literacy teachers, and adult education officers at different levels. Data were collected through documentation, checklist, observation, questionnaire and interview schedules. Data collected were, calculated into frequencies and percentages as well as subjected to content analysis. The findings of the study indicated, that learners joined literacy classes out of external pressures, hence could not perceive any personal goal that learning would help to achieve. Besides this, the content ,of the programme was irrelevant to the learners needs. This subsequently, led to irregularity of attendance, apathy and dropouts. Similarly, the study discovered, that literacy classes were handled by unqualified teachers who, therefore, could neither teach effectively nor handle learners problems in classes. The methods used were teacher centred which could not allow learners' active participation in learning. Apart from this, inadequate instructional materials, poor attendance and irregular payment of honoraria demoralized teachers who consequently became less committed to the programme. On the basis of the findings and conclusions it was recommended, that the Ministry of Education and Culture should adopt a bottom-up approach, in planning literacy programmes, to make them relevant to the learners' needs. It should also provide adequate instructional materials and integrate literacy activities with other mass educational campaigns. It was further suggested that literacy teachers should be trained and given their honoraria in time to boost their morale and commitment to the teaching exercise.With regard to further research, it was recommended among other recommendations that a study to assess the adults' learning needs be conducted, to establish how a community based programme could be effected.
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Adult education, Kibondo District, Tanzania
Bhalalusesa, E. P(1993) Factors influencing adult learning in literacy classes in Tanzania: a case study of Kibondo district,masters dissertation, University of Dar es Salaam. Available at (