Grade for Online Literacy? Big Fat F

In the 9.19. Chronicle of Higher Education, Jakob Nielson reports on his study

on how people read web pages. Apparently, they just

skim them and read across lines







So the reading pattern looks like the letter “F” or, for the more literate of us,

kind of like an e.e. cummings poem.

The article goes on to note that just as online reading is like “reading lite” so too is technology in the classroom regarding its effect (or not) on student achievement. Perhaps our tests are testing the wrong skills and haven’t adapted, perhaps we really are evolving to “idiocracy,” or perhaps our curriculum hasn’t evolved to make the best use of technology? Some of all the above?

One Response to “Grade for Online Literacy? Big Fat F”

  1. rufusb said:

    Oct 02, 08 at 8:44 am

    Were people better readers before? Haven’t we always been idiots? I say we should be thankful that web pages still require people to read…even if it is skimming.

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