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NCTE Position Statement

The NCTE Definition of 21st Century Literacies

Updated February 2013
Adopted by the NCTE Executive Committee, February 15, 2008 

Literacy has always been a collection of cultural and communicative practices shared among members of particular groups. As society and technology change, so does literacy. Because technology has increased the intensity and complexity of literate environments, the 21st century demands that a literate person possess a wide range of abilities and competencies, many literacies. These literacies are multiple, dynamic, and malleable. As in the past, they are inextricably linked with particular histories, life possibilities, and social trajectories of individuals and groups. Active, successful participants in this 21st century global society must be able to

  • Develop proficiency and fluency with the tools of technology;

  • Build intentional cross-cultural connections and relationships with others so to pose and solve problems collaboratively and strengthen independent thought;

  • Design and share information for global communities to meet a variety of purposes;

  • Manage, analyze, and synthesize multiple streams of simultaneous information;

  • Create, critique, analyze, and evaluate multimedia texts;

  • Attend to the ethical responsibilities required by these complex environments.

   

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