Education Careers | Adult Basic Education / Literacy Instructor

Adult Basic Education / Literacy Instructor

Career Area: Education and Training

Occupation Group: Vocational and Professional Instruction


Percentile wages tell how much a certain percentage of an overall population in a geographic area or within a given industry or field makes. The percentile wage estimate is the value of a wage below which a certain percent of workers fall.

An example would be the 25th percentile, 25 percent of workers employed in that occupation earn less and 75 percent earn more than the estimated wage value. At the 75th percentile, 75 percent of workers employed in that occupation earn less and 25 percent earn more than the estimated wage value.

A typical Adult Basic Education / Literacy Instructor earns the following wages (national and state):


The average salary in North Carolina for those pursuing this career is $36,337

*The salaries depicted here are representative of the range of salaries posted in job listings over the past year. Living wage in North Carolina is $30,000.


The average salary in the United States for those pursuing this career is $46,733

*The salaries depicted here are representative of the range of salaries posted in job listings over the past year. Living wage in North Carolina is $30,000.

What Does a Professional in this Career Do?

Works with adults, including young adults who are out of school, to improve literacy and strengthen basic skills in reading, writing and math. Helps students to learn English or gain a high school diploma or equivalent certificate. Assesses students' educational levels, skills and goals, and differentiates instruction as needed for adults at different levels in one class. May focus on basic skills as needed for a particular occupation, or assist students with developing study skills or job search skills, or help students connect with social services.

Employment Trends

The job demand and job growth statistics shown here were derived from job posts over the past year. Expected job growth projections are extrapolated from year-over-year job post listing history.

Job demand and job growth is expected at the following rates:

North Carolina92-5.4%


A professional in this position typically utilizes the following skills in the course of everyday work in this exciting and challenging field:

Baseline Skills

The following are baseline skills every Adult Basic Education / Literacy Instructor is expected to have in order to experience success in this field:

  • Communication Skills: The ability to convey information to another effectively and efficiently.
  • English: English is a West Germanic language that was first spoken in early medieval England and is now a global lingua franca.
  • Teamwork / Collaboration: Experience working in collaborative efforts with a team to achieve a common goal or to complete a task in the most effective and efficient way.
  • Writing: Experience expressing business messages effectively in written form. This may include planning drafting and revising as necessary.
  • Planning: Working experience with the process of thinking about and organizing the activities required to achieve desired goals.

Specialized Skills

These skills are specific to working in this career:

  • Teaching: Working experience of teaching, which is defined as imparting knowledge to an individual or class, or instruct someone as to how to do something.
  • Adult Education: Working experience with the practice in which adults engage in systematic and sustained self-educating activities in order to gain new forms of knowledge, skills, attitudes, or values.
  • Lesson Planning: Working experience developing or implementing teachers' description of a course of instruction for a lesson.
  • Special Education: Special education (also known as special needs education, aided education, exceptional education or Special Ed) is the practice of educating students with special educational needs in a way that addresses their individual differences and needs.
  • Teaching Speakers of Other Languages: encompasses what used to be called TEFL (Teaching English as a Foreign Language) and TESL (Teaching English as a Second Language). Generally, TEFL emphasises aspects of teaching English in countries where English is not widely used in daily life, such as Russia, China, France and Brazil.

Distinguishing Skills

Any Adult Basic Education / Literacy Instructor that possesses the following skills will stand out against the competition:

  • Social Studies: Social studies is the integrated study of the social sciences, humanities and history.
  • Learning Styles: Learning styles refer to a range of competing and contested theories that aim to account for differences in individuals' learning.
  • Tutoring: Working experience of Tutoring, which is the act of teaching or instructing, or remedial or additional teaching, designed to help people who need extra help with their studies.
  • Group Instruction: Experience leading a group of learners to construct their own knowledge models in a socially collaborative environment.


This position typically requires the following level of experience. The numbers presented in the pie charts below were derived from actual job posts over the past year. Not all job postings list experience requirements.

Experience Required%
0 to 2 years57%
3 to 5 years38%
6 to 8 years3%

Many of the programs offered through NC State are designed for working professionals who need additional credentials to enhance existing work experience.

Students who do not have the expected level of experience may wish to look into internship and employment opportunities.

Common Job Titles

It is possible to find work in this field in positions commonly listed as the following job titles:

  • General Education Teacher
  • Literacy Specialist
  • Adult Education Teacher
  • Literacy Teacher
  • Ged Instructor

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