How the Internet may be changing the way we read...
Tina Miller, MA,CFLE stashed this in Internet
Claire Handscombe has a commitment problem online. Like a lot of Web surfers, she clicks on links posted on social networks, reads a few sentences, looks for exciting words, and then grows restless, scampering off to the next page she probably won’t commit to.
“I give it a few seconds — not even minutes — and then I’m moving again,” says Handscombe, a 35-year-old graduate student in creative writing at American University.
But it’s not just online anymore. She finds herself behaving the same way with a novel.
“It’s like your eyes are passing over the words but you’re not taking in what they say,” she confessed. “When I realize what’s happening, I have to go back and read again and again.”
Maryanne Wolf is worried, too!
Wolf’s next book will look at what the digital world is doing to the brain, including looking at brain-scan data as people read both online and in print. She is particularly interested in comprehension results in screen vs. print reading.
Already, there is some intriguing research that looks at that question. A 2012 Israeli study of engineering students — who grew up in the world of screens — looked at their comprehension while reading the same text on screen and in print when under time pressure to complete the task.
The students believed they did better on screen. They were wrong. Their comprehension and learning was better on paper.
Two years later this problem is worse than ever.