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What is the impact of the digital world on student literacy?

Many have been heard to say that computers dumb down standards of literacy.  Is this a fair call?

In my experience I would have to say no.  Students will write to the context and therefore 'txt' language will be just that, but there is little evidence to suggest that this type of language flows over into more formal writing.  If it does, then the teachers should be held to account for not making it explicit what is expected in these genre.  What is evident though, is that students who are regularly allowed to write using computers and other technologies, are more engaged, more prolific and hence there is a greater opportunity for teacher feedback to raise the quality level of writing, reading and other literacies.  Let's not the blame the tools just because we ourselves may find them an uncomfortable tool.  Our students, given the opportunity will express just the reverse.  Many feel stifled by paper and pen, the barriers go up, and writing or reading becomes a task - often one viewed as pointless and irrelevant as it is seldom for a genuine audience.

I found this video while searching for a variety of other material to support this community:


 Found at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sIKu_hZT2BM&NR=1&feature=fvwp


Innes Kennard 516 days ago

I totally agree Jill. I have done significant incidental research (questionaires and interviews) with children over the past few years and they are very clear about their preference for digital writing. We do need to develop, model and support quality processes to enable this to happen and this is where PD is required.

I celebrate when i hear teachers say they use the computers for word processing. Sometimes there is an 'all' in there - this tells me they do not understand the word process and have confused it with product.Laughing