What we Do

The UIC Center for Literacy is a public service and research center that works to improve literacy education, policy, and research at the local, state, and national levels.

We provide leadership and technical assistance to Chicago area schools and community-based organizations for the purpose of enhancing the quality of literacy services. We also work with public and private entities to formulate policies that support effective literacy programs.

The Center responds to issues in literacy education by:

  • Serving as a public clearinghouse for literacy information;
  • Establishing partnerships with external agencies and university departments;
  • Contributing to enhanced graduate education for future leaders in literacy education; and
  • Creating innovative, research-based school and community programs that serve as exemplary models for public practice.

Our activities are especially focused on helping to reduce literacy as a barrier to full societal participation for all individuals.

What we've Accomplished

Thought Leadership

  • Conducted research that led to effective literacy program implementations
  • Conducted evaluation studies of national and state literacy and early childhood initiatives
  • Informed local, state, and national literacy policy
  • Established CFL as a center of thought leadership in literacy at national and international levels

Educational Outreach

  • Served 6,857 Adult Education Students through ESL, ABE, and GED classes
  • Graduated 387 students with a GED

Family Support

  • Conducted workshops that served 38,579 parents
  • Facilitated approximately 125 workshops focused on children with autism and other developmental delays
  • Provided support to parents and Head Start staff through 113,161 resource room visits

Service and Volunteerism

  • Logged 405,900 volunteer hours
  • Engaged 199 Americorps members
  • Supported by 392 part-time volunteers

What's Next

25 years from now, we see CFL as being known as a source for model programming and research related to urban literacy.

To accomplish this, it is important that we continue to:

  • Conduct and share research
  • Identify and secure sustainable funding
  • Develop our human resource access, capacity, and vitality
  • Build strong local partnerships
  • Maximize innovations in technology