Texting: An Old Language Habit in a New Media

By Erika M. Patterson.

Published by The Humanities Collection

Format Price
Article: Print $US10.00
Article: Electronic $US5.00

The purpose of this paper is to show that text messaging generally increases the literacy of students from elementary to college environments by comparing the space constraints of a text message with the constraints of cuneiform messages, investigating the increase of media usage in teens and their ability to multitask, discussing the usage of social media and gaming to increase education, showing how multimedia devices can be used in the classroom as mini-computers to assist in learning, and to compare the language structure of text speak with Standard English. Dennis E. Baron’s definition of linguistic insecurity illustrates the issues between prescriptive grammar, descriptive grammar, the emotional insecurity American society carries in its uses of the English language, and the confusion English Language Learners face in learning and using English correctly. The media’s exaggerations target the anxiety English language users exhibit due to the past developments in the language that result in deep issues concerning the correct usage of the language, but not all reporting skews research findings, but instead reports the opinions and views of the society and technology communities. The debate in the schools is to determine whether text messaging should be addressed as an acceptable topic of instruction in English courses and if it is the cause of a decrease in reading and writing skills in students. The use of multimedia devices and the acceptance of text messaging as a teaching opportunity opens up the lines of communication between the student and teacher, which increases the ability to learn and results in higher test scores and grades and decreases linguistic anxiety.

Keywords: Texting, Linguistic Insecurity, Literacy

International Journal of the Humanities, Volume 9, Issue 7, pp.235-242. Article: Print (Spiral Bound). Article: Electronic (PDF File; 862.127KB).

Erika M. Patterson

Graduate Student, College of Education, Department of English, Winthrop University, Rock Hill, South Carolina, USA

I am a graduate student pursuing a Masters of Arts in Teaching Secondary English with a Bachelor’s Degree in English with a focus in Language and Literature. Technology usage for the classroom and its influence on students and society interests me. I have a background in publishing and print media.

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