Created on: March 08, 2013 Last Updated: March 09, 2013
With the change in the way that people communicate in this day and age, what concerns many educators is the effect that SMS language is having on writing standards. Although there are those who dismiss that there is any detrimental effect, it's important to note that some studies into the trend show an alarming change in the way that students communicate within their written work. There are many different aspects which need to be looked into to get a full picture, and a very astute study into children at different levels of education highlights the changes which are taking place.
In fact, the percentage of teaching staff noticing differences between standard education before SMS and current trends is on the increase in some countries, while in others, studies show a more positive impact. With SMS using a shortened or abbreviated version of English language, the age at which a child is introduced to SMS as a form of communication would appear to matter, though the jury is hung on whether this provides negative or positive impact upon written work skills.
The skills purported to be affected by SMS
During a test on children of different ages and various stages of education, the findings were quite alarming. In written tests, for example, non conventional spelling was encountered in 90.91 per cent of the samples taken spread over the whole spectrum of ages. Emoticons or small scribbles which represent such things as smiles, grimaces or the like, were less likely to be included in written work, with a small percentage of 13.64.
The alarming trend of homophone use was noted both in word and numerical writing. To explain what this means it is important that readers note homophones are words which are pronounced in a similar way to the word intended, but which have a different meaning. Fifty per cent of the students tested used letter homophones while a smaller percentage of thirty-six percent used number homophones.
The study further showed that students regularly misused commas and periods and had a tendency to use what was termed as “g-clippings” or the missing of the letter “g” at the end of words such as learning, eating and other words ending in “ing” which in turn means that exposure to this style of writing over a period of time can deteriorate the standard of writing. Familiarity plays a part in this, since those exposed to SMS on a regular basis saw those words which were written as being correct, particularly in Grades
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