Adult Upgrading

Adult upgrading through the Ontario Literacy and Basic Skills (LBS) program helps adults to develop and apply communication, numeracy, interpersonal, and digital skills to achieve their goals. The LBS program serves learners who have goals to successfully transition to employment, postsecondary, apprenticeship, secondary school, and increased independence. The program includes learners who may have a range of barriers to learning. Find out more about Ontario’s LBS program here.

Businesswoman pointing to word upgrade against grey wall, adult upgrading

If gaps in your education are holding you back, you can get the confidence and skills you need to succeed through adult upgrading. Not everyone takes the same educational path because everyone’s needs are different. That’s why there are many options to help reach your goals – including online learning, in-person workshops, and full-time programs. Look through the provided links to see what options best fit your needs to help you get to the next stage of your employment journey.

If you have been out of school for a while and need to improve your skills, you can get help with reading, spelling, writing, mathematics, and computer basics.

Adult Upgrading Pathways

There are five ‘pathways’ or outcomes that adult upgrading focuses on:

  • Employment
  • Apprenticeship
  • Secondary School Credit
  • Post Secondary
  • Independence


To qualify for the Literacy and Basic Skills (LBS) program, learners must be:

  • Ontario residents;
  • Assessed at intake as being less than the end of Level 3 of the International Adult Literacy and Skills Survey (IALSS) or the OALCF;
  • At least 19 years old. (On an exception only basis, LBS service providers may serve young adults between ages 16 to 18 who demonstrate the maturity to benefit from adult education. However, returning to the regular school system should be the priority for these learners); and
  • Proficient enough in speaking and listening to benefit fully from the language of LBS instruction (English or French). This eligibility requirement does not apply to Deaf learners.

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