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Text-message abbreviations and language skills in high school and university students


De Jonge, S and Kemp, N, Text-message abbreviations and language skills in high school and university students, Journal of Research in Reading, 35, (1) pp. 49-68. ISSN 0141-0423 (2012) [Refereed Article]

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DOI: doi:10.1111/j.1467-9817.2010.01466.x


This study investigated the use of text-message abbreviations (textisms) in Australian adolescents and young adults, and relations between textism use and literacy abilities. Fifty-two high school students aged 1315 years, and 53 undergraduates aged 1824 years, all users of predictive texting, translated conventional English sentences into textese using two methods: writing messages down and typing them into mobile phones. Participants produced a variety of textisms, and in both translation methods, adolescents and young adults used textisms in nearly identical ways. This was true for the proportion and types of textisms used, textism categories produced and consistency with which textisms were spelled. The use of textisms was negatively correlated with scores for reading, nonword reading, spelling and morphological awareness, but some of these relationships were accounted for by participants' usual text-messaging frequency. For these age groups, concerns that frequent texting may mask or even contribute to poor linguistic skills cannot be dismissed.

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
Research Division:Psychology
Research Group:Cognitive and computational psychology
Research Field:Psycholinguistics (incl. speech production and comprehension)
Objective Division:Culture and Society
Objective Group:Communication
Objective Field:Languages and linguistics
UTAS Author:De Jonge, S (Ms Sarah De Jonge)
UTAS Author:Kemp, N (Associate Professor Nenagh Kemp)
ID Code:66259
Year Published:2012
Web of Science® Times Cited:38
Deposited By:Psychology
Deposited On:2011-01-11
Last Modified:2018-05-04
Downloads:16 View Download Statistics

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