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Global Literacy

By | November 2012
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Global Literacy: A Complex Definition
The term global literacy might simply be defined as having a worldview (Cohen and Cowen 2012). But upon deeper reflection, the most accurate definition is as complex as the forces of globalization which impact all humanity. Pervasive trends such as free trade, transnational migration and technological proliferation are reshaping our world in dramatic ways. Today we live on a shrinking globe with challenges and opportunities that transcend traditional boundaries. Globalization has evolved from a relative abstraction to the concrete reality of life in the 21st century. The lines between local and global have blurred, as people, places, institutions and systems across the globe are increasingly interconnected (Brooks and Normore, 2010). Our world of human interdependence requires a new way of thinking and leaning based on the ideal that each and every one of us are equal partners in humanity. Now more than ever, we need to prepare global literate citizens with “the knowledge, attitudes, and skills to function in their cultural communities and beyond their cultural borders” (Banks, 2004). Therefore, as educators, we should help students gain the intercultural understanding and emotional intelligence required to be perspective-conscious problem solvers and forces for common good (Wade, 2002; Alter, 2001). Building on this goal, educators would encourage a range of perspectives for students to understand, value, construct and participate in a society “in which all groups experience cultural democracy and empowerment” (Ukpokodu, 2003; Banks 2004).

The Reading Connection
Reading might be defines as the cognitive process of analyzing and synthesizing text. In order to comprehend and derive meaning, the reader associates perceptions, memories and beliefs to the text. The reader thus applies internal/external processes and perspectives in order to acquire knowledge and modify existing schemas. While the reader is...
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