International Survey of Adult Skills 2012: Adult Literacy, Numeracy and Problem Solving Skills in England

Rebecca Wheater, Juliet Sizmur, Bethan Burge, Julie Sewell, Jack Worth, J Williams

08 October 2013

Available to download report from

The OECD Survey of Adult Skills (PIAAC) (known as the International Survey of Adult Skills in the UK) is a survey of literacy, numeracy and problem solving in technology-rich environments. It directly measured adults’ skills and also collected a wealth of contextual data about participants’ backgrounds and their use of these skills in work and their day to day lives. Findings from the survey will be used to inform skills policies, to help decide what is working and what changes may need to be made in the future – in England and in other countries around the world.

The first wave of the International Survey of Adult Skills involved adults aged 16-65 in England, Northern Ireland and another 23 countries around the world. In the UK, the National Foundation for Educational Research led the study in partnership with NatCen, TNS-BMRB and the Northern Ireland Statistics and Research Agency. NFER would like to thank the adults that took part in the survey and made it a success.

Northern Ireland findings from the International Survey of Adult Skills 2012