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County estimates for U.S. adults’ literacy and numeracy skills vary by age and education

Using the three rounds of U.S. PIAAC data (in 2012, 2014 and 2017) as well as the data from the American Community Survey, this report presents the small area estimation methodology used to produce the estimates of various adults (16-74 years old) proficiency levels in literacy and numeracy skills for certain age and education groups in each county in the United States and the District of Columbia.

A model-based allocation approach was developed using the previously released model-based county-level, state-level, and state-by-group-level estimates. The newly derived model-based estimates can facilitate county adult education departments to plan interventions, allocate scarce resources and provide information to the general public, especially targeting interventions for age and education groups.