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Male Students Use 'Txt Speak' in Writing More Than Female Students, Studies Find

Male Students Use 'Txt Speak' in Writing More Than Female Students, Studies Find

A study in the United Kingdom finds that more boys are using "txt speak" in the classroom than girls.

Thousands of children are resorting to this speech, "amid growing concerns over standards of writing, according to research," said an article on Telegraph.com.

"Figures show more than one-in-six boys in primary education employs mobile phone text message abbreviations such as 'lol', 'gr8, 'l8r and b4 in their school work," the article said. "Boys are considerably more likely to shun conventional grammar and spelling than girls as the lines between formal and informal writing become increasingly blurred, it emerged."

According to the article, that National Literacy Trust "insisted that the reliance on technology among boys was indicative of a wider gulf in standards between the sexes, with boys also less likely to write in their spare time outside school."

"Researchers warned boys were increasingly 'embarrassed' to be seen writing," the article said. "Almost a third of girls – 32 percent – claim they write daily outside the classroom, compared with only 21 percent of boys."

“Our research shows that we must focus on increasing boys’ frequency and enjoyment of writing if we are to support them to succeed at school and throughout their future lives,” said Jonathan Douglas, the trust's director. "It’s down to teachers as well as parents to nurture a love of writing in boys and help to develop positive attitudes towards it early on in their education.”

The study, the article said, "which was based on a poll of eight- to 16-year-olds, found 13 percent of children overall used “txt” speak in school written work."

"But the proportion jumped to 14.6 percent among boys, rising further to 17.5 percent among boys aged eight to 11," the article said. "By comparison, only 11.3 percent of girls – and 12.9 percent of those in primary schools – used text message abbreviations in school. Some experts have claimed that exposure to technology – particularly mobile phones and social networking websites – is fuelling a decline in pupils’ written skills by blurring the boundaries between colloquialisms and standard English."

Read the full story and comment below. 

Article by Kassondra Granata, Education World Contributor

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