About ALM

ALM was formally established in 1994 with the aim to promote the learning of mathematics by adults through an international forum which brings together those engaged and interested in research and developments in the field of adult mathematics teaching and learning.

As Diana Coben (1994), the first Chair of ALM explained:

Within ALM we understand the term ‘mathematics’ to include numeracy.

Over the last 30 years ALM members, practitioners and researchers have contributed to a vast archive of articles, videos and conference papers, available on this website, that explore ways to understand how adults’ learn mathematics and how that knowledge is utilised through the lived experience.

The increasing importance of this work is reflected in the growing international collaboration and influence of ALM members in response to what Hoogland and Díez- Palomar (2022) identify as an increasingly mathematised society. A society where adults must respond to the rapidly changing economic, social, environmental, and technological demands placed on them and make numerate decisions that impact on their lives.  Yet still many citizens lack the numeracy competencies to enable them to fully participate (Gal, Grotlüschen, Tout & Kaiser, 2020; Hoogland & Díez-Palomar, 2022; Yasukawa, Rogers, Jackson, & Street, 2018). Yet as few adults trust numbers enough to deal with, let alone challenge, a world in which fake-news can flourish (Kelly, B.; Díez-Palomar, J.; Faulkner, F.; Hoogland, K., 2022).  These factors point to the profound implications for the way in which numerical skills are taught and learnt in adult education programmes.


Coben, D. (1994). Preface and content. Proceedings of the International Conference of Adults Learning Mathematics (ALM) 1, 11-17.

Gal, I., Grotlüschen, A., Tout, D., & Kaiser, G. (2020). Numeracy, adult education, and vulnerable adults: A critical view of a neglected field. ZDM,52(3), 377-394. https://doi.org/10.1007/s11858-020-01155-9

Kees Hoogland, Javier Díez-Palomar. The Mathematisation of society: rethinking basic skills for adults. Twelfth Congress of the European Society for Research in Mathematics Education (CERME12), Feb 2022, Bozen-Bolzano, Italy. ⟨hal-03745525⟩

Kelly, B.; Díez-Palomar, J.; Faulkner, F.; Hoogland, K. (2022). Introduction to TWG07 Adult Mathematics Education. Twelfth Congress of the European Society for Research in Mathematics Education (CERME12), Feb 2022, Bozen-Bolzano, Italy.

Yasukawa, K., Rogers, A., Jackson, K., & Street, B. V. (2018). Numeracy as social practice: global and local perspectives. Routledge. https://doi.org/10.4324/9781315269474