A Momentary Flow

Updating Worldviews one World at a time

 Does social media make us smarter? 
 Turns out there are some benefits to shrinking your attention span to nothing 
O n any given day the average American teenager spends more than 7.5 hours online and uses his or her cell phone 60 times. While these numbers strike fear in the hearts of parents and crotchety novelists lamenting the loss of a more meaningful existence, there are some real benefits to a technology-saturated life: Young people spend far more time consuming new information, honing verbal concision, and interacting with a diverse audience than they have at any point in history. Social media might render us mean and unhappy, but it also makes us more intelligent, according to a new study. Research suggests social media can improve verbal, research, and critical-thinking skills despite popular concern about the damaging effects of the internet on impressionable youths. Stanford Professor Andrea Lunsford collected 877 freshman composition papers from 1917 to 2006 to study the ways technological advances have changed the quality of writing. Often the biggest complaint about “digital natives” is lazy prose — a tendency to use abbreviations and poor grammar — but Lunsford’s research suggests that’s a myth. She discovered there was virtually no change in the number of errors in composition papers over the past century. She also found that by 2006, papers were six times longer, more thoroughly researched, and more complex than those written in 1917. “Student writers today are tackling the kinds of issues that require inquiry and investigation as well as reflection,” Professor Lunsford told The Globe and Mail. (via Does social media make us smarter? - The Week)
Does social media make us smarter?
Turns out there are some benefits to shrinking your attention span to nothing

O n any given day the average American teenager spends more than 7.5 hours online and uses his or her cell phone 60 times. While these numbers strike fear in the hearts of parents and crotchety novelists lamenting the loss of a more meaningful existence, there are some real benefits to a technology-saturated life: Young people spend far more time consuming new information, honing verbal concision, and interacting with a diverse audience than they have at any point in history. Social media might render us mean and unhappy, but it also makes us more intelligent, according to a new study. Research suggests social media can improve verbal, research, and critical-thinking skills despite popular concern about the damaging effects of the internet on impressionable youths. Stanford Professor Andrea Lunsford collected 877 freshman composition papers from 1917 to 2006 to study the ways technological advances have changed the quality of writing. Often the biggest complaint about “digital natives” is lazy prose — a tendency to use abbreviations and poor grammar — but Lunsford’s research suggests that’s a myth. She discovered there was virtually no change in the number of errors in composition papers over the past century. She also found that by 2006, papers were six times longer, more thoroughly researched, and more complex than those written in 1917. “Student writers today are tackling the kinds of issues that require inquiry and investigation as well as reflection,” Professor Lunsford told The Globe and Mail. (via Does social media make us smarter? - The Week)

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