Text Messaging Boosts Teen Writing Ability - InformationWeek

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Commentary
10/31/2005
10:33 AM
Mike Elgan
Mike Elgan
Commentary
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Text Messaging Boosts Teen Writing Ability

A Cambridge University study has found that text messaging has boosted the ability of teenagers to write. The study found that "today's teenagers are using far more complex sentence structures, a wider vocabulary and a more accurate use of capital letters, punctuation and spelling." That's the good news. The bad news is that they're also "ten times more likely to use non-standard English in written exams than in 1980, usin

A Cambridge University study has found that text messaging has boosted the ability of teenagers to write. The study found that "today's teenagers are using far more complex sentence structures, a wider vocabulary and a more accurate use of capital letters, punctuation and spelling."

That's the good news. The bad news is that they're also "ten times more likely to use non-standard English in written exams than in 1980, using colloquial words, informal phrases and text-messaging shorthand - such as m8 for 'mate', 2 instead of 'too' and u for 'you'."

The study, of course, was conducted on UK teenagers. American kids are most likely similarly transformed by their obsessive use of instant messaging, rather than texting (and are ten times less likely to use the word "mate").

I would also guess that American teens can type faster than any previous generation in history.

Enjoy it now, because new technologies will inevitably come along any minute now that will make communication possibly without typing and without writing -- and those skills will be tossed aside for good.

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