Definition of literacy in English:


Line breaks: lit|er¦acy
Pronunciation: /ˈlɪt(ə)rəsi


[mass noun]
  • 1The ability to read and write: tests of literacy and numeracy [as modifier]: adult literacy programmes
    More example sentences
    • Innovative programmes successfully encouraged adults to develop their literacy and numeracy skills.
    • One in five adults has poor literacy skills and it is many of these who cannot find employment.
    • Its treasures must be plundered and used to fund literacy programmes and childcare.
    ability to read and write, reading/writing ability, reading/writing proficiency; learning, book learning, education, scholarship, schooling; letters
  • 1.1Competence or knowledge in a specified area: computer literacy is essential
    More example sentences
    • This is the challenge of actually tapping the talent and cultural literacy in our diverse population.
    • It's not computer literacy these lost kids need, but cultural literacy.
    • Inadequate health literacy was identified in 16 participants.


late 19th century: from literate, on the pattern of illiteracy.

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