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Children's text messaging: abbreviations, input methods and links with literacy


Kemp, N and Bushnell, C, Children's text messaging: abbreviations, input methods and links with literacy, Journal of Computer-Assisted Learning, 27, (1) pp. 18-27. ISSN 0266-4909 (2011) [Refereed Article]

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DOI: doi:10.1111/j.1365-2729.2010.00400.x


This study investigated the effects of mobile phone text-messaging method (predictive and multi-press) and experience (in texters and non-texters) on children’s textism use and understanding. It also examined popular claims that the use of text-message abbreviations, or textese spelling, is associated with poor literacy skills. A sample of 86 children aged 10 to 12 years read and wrote text messages in conventional English and in textese, and completed tests of spelling, reading, and non-word reading. Children took significantly longer, and made more errors, when reading messages written in textese than in conventional English. Further, they were no faster at writing messages in textese than in conventional English, regardless of texting method or experience. Predictive texters were faster at reading and writing messages than multi-press texters, and texting experience increased writing, but not reading, speed. General spelling and reading scores did not differ significantly with usual texting method. However, better literacy skills were associated with greater textese reading speed and accuracy. These findings add to the growing evidence for a positive relationship between texting proficiency and traditional literacy skills.

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:Education and Training
Objective Group:Learner and learning
Objective Field:Learner and learning not elsewhere classified
UTAS Author:Kemp, N (Associate Professor Nenagh Kemp)
UTAS Author:Bushnell, C (Miss Catherine Bushnell)
ID Code:69685
Year Published:2011
Web of Science® Times Cited:43
Deposited By:Psychology
Deposited On:2011-05-13
Last Modified:2018-01-23
Downloads:12 View Download Statistics

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