Global literacy is an understanding of how the world is organized and interconnected and the possibilities and constraints facing its peoples.
Globally literate students analyze and think critically about the world and their roles in it. They understand and appreciate global systems, circumstances, and relationships that influence peoples’ lives.
Globally literate students are empowered to effect positive change in an increasingly interconnected world.
There is work to be done in raising the level of global literacy. The Council on Foreign Relations (CFR) and National Geographic commissioned a survey to gauge what young people educated in American colleges and universities know about geography, the environment, demographics, U.S. foreign policy, recent international events, and economics. The survey based on 1,203 respondents aged eighteen to twenty-six, revealed significant gaps between what young people understand about today’s world and what they need to know to successfully navigate and compete in it. The average score on the survey’s knowledge questions was only 55 percent correct, and just 29 percent of respondents earned a minimal pass—66 percent correct or better. (See 2016 Survey on Global Literacy)