Reading Into the Future: Competence for the 21st Century

Patricia A. Alexander, Emily Fox, Liliana Maggioni, Sandra M. Loughlin, Peter Baggetta, Daniel L. Dinsmore, Emily M. Grossnickle, Alexandra List, Meghan M. Parkinson, Fielding I. Winters, Denis Dumas

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

177 Scopus citations


In this theoretical contribution, our purpose is to examine the nature of reading competence as it unfolds at the present and to project that nature into the future. More specifically, we ask what it will mean to be a competent reader for the 21st century and what combination of knowledge, beliefs, abilities, and processes that competence will require. To address this question, we begin by presenting our view of reading as essentially multidimensional, developmental, and goal directed, and of the development of reading competence as framed by research on expertise development and on the role of epistemic beliefs. With that view in mind, we then identify salient features of the current context and how they might present challenges that will make the development of competent readers even more vital as we move into the future. Finally, we forward three suggestions for supporting readers in their growth toward competence for this century.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)259-280
Number of pages22
JournalEducational Psychologist
Issue number4
StatePublished - Oct 1 2012

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Developmental and Educational Psychology


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