We’re In The Midst of a Literacy Revolution

August 28, 2009

File under: the sky is falling, science-fiction-without-the-future, get off of my lawn. On Slashdot:

Mike Sauter sends in a piece from Wired profiling research by Andrea Lunsford, a professor of writing and rhetoric at Stanford, from which she concludes that we don’t need to worry about computers and the Internet causing a decline in general literacy. “[Lunsford] has organized a mammoth project called the Stanford Study of Writing to scrutinize college students’ prose. From 2001 to 2006, she collected 14,672 student writing samples — everything from in-class assignments, formal essays, and journal entries to emails, blog posts, and chat sessions. Her conclusions are stirring. ‘I think we’re in the midst of a literacy revolution the likes of which we haven’t seen since Greek civilization,’ she says. For Lunsford, technology isn’t killing our ability to write. It’s reviving it — and pushing our literacy in bold new directions.”

This seems pretty obvious to me, although I must admit the case of the woman who always had the television on, and once she got Internet access, immediately went to watch the Harry Potter movie trailers.

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