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;
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.

Definition of literacy in: