Dr. Kristen Turner on Teens’ Digital Writing Language

eb25b-turnerDr. Kristen Turner was recently interviewed for the Voices of Literacy podcast. She discusses digitalk, i.e. the informal, written language teens’ use in digital spaces.

When teenagers use a lot of consonants at the end of the word so they would write the word ‘Hey’ but they might use five or six y’s at the end of that word. We were really surprised about that at first and then we found that this is a trend among teenagers and we asked them why. Some of the reasons had to deal with getting their personal voice or the sound of their own voice into their language…

Unfortunately, the media portrayal and even parents…think that their digitalk, these shortcuts that they’re taking, are detrimental to their writing. In actuality, they are developing writing skills.

The podcast references “Demystifying Digitalk: The What and Why of the Language Teens Use in Digital Writing” co-authored by Dr. Turner, Meredith Jeta Donovan (GSE doctoral student in Language and Literacy Education), Sandra Abrams of St. John’s University, and Elvira Katic of Ramapo College and published in the Journal of Literacy Research.

Listen to the podcast.



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