Technology and Student Prose - The Intrepid

Sunday, September 20, 2009

Technology and Student Prose

Girl Typing

According to a new study by Andrea Lunsford, a professor of writing and rhetoric at Stanford University, technology isn’t crippling writing, it’s saving it. From 2001 to 2006, Lunsford examined 14,672 student writing examples, including essays, emails, blog posts, and text messages, and found that students are still writing technically competent prose (despite opinions to the contrary). In fact, they’re writing more than ever before, both inside and outside of the classroom. Lunsford concludes that the internet is forcing students, and people in general, to write in order to engage with each other. Twenty years ago, before the internet, people didn’t write on regular basis, unless their job required it. Today, it’s almost impossible to get through the day without writing an email or a blog post.

Perhaps technology is helping Stanford's students, but about the rest of the world? Technology doesn't seem to be helping the illiterates that are featured on sites like Lamebook.

Photo by NYCArthur.