What does age have to do with skills proficiency?


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Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD)


The Survey of Adult Skills finds that adults aged 55 to 65 are less proficient in literacy and numeracy than adults aged 25 to 34. Adults tend to lose their information-processing skills as they age, especially if they do not use them. While older adults may compensate for this loss by developing other valuable skills, the importance of being proficient in information-processing skills in determining wages and employment does not diminish as workers age. But differences in skills proficiency that are related to age vary widely across countries, implying that skills policies can affect...  [+] Show more

Subjects: Skills and knowledge; Demographics; Research; Literacy; Numeracy; Policy; Employment

Keywords: OECD country; Older worker; Young worker; Basic skill; Skill needs; Skill obsolescence; Skill upgrading; Age; Survey; Policy implications; Employability

Published: Paris, France: OECD, 2016

Physical description: 4 p.

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Related items: TD/TNC 124.661

ISSN: 2412-1401 (online)

More detail is reported in 'Age, ageing and skills: results from the Survey of Adult Skills', indexed in VOCEDplus at TD/TNC 124.661.

Resource type: Report, paper or authored book

Rights: You can copy, download or print OECD content for your own use, and you can include excerpts from OECD publications, databases and multimedia products in your own documents, presentations, blogs, websites and teaching materials, provided that suitable acknowledgment of OECD as source and copyright owner is given.

Document number: TD/TNC 124.347

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