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Title: Using technology to support reading development : current practice and new opportunities
Author: Coe, Jamie E. L.
Awarding Body: University of Southampton
Current Institution: University of Southampton
Date of Award: 2012
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Integrating computer technology into schools has been a key government agenda (Wellington, 2005). Individual computer programs have been introduced to support students across the curriculum, including with the development of literacy skills. This paper explores how computer technology can be used in supporting the development of word reading, with particular emphasis on how technology can be employed in novel and innovative ways; namely through the use of mobile phone text-messaging. Firstly, reading research is considered, with a focus on the role of phonological awareness and implications for reading interventions. Current uses of technology at home and at school are explored, before specific computer-based literacy interventions are discussed and evaluated. Finally, the possibility of integrating text-messaging into an intervention is proposed. Correlational evidence suggests a positive relationship between use of textisms (abbreviated words in text messages) and literacy (Neville, 2003). However, the causal nature of this relationship has not yet been tested experimentally. Consequently, this review is followed by a study that aimed to provide further insights into the relationship between textism use and literacy skills. Sixteen 9-10-year-old children, inexperienced with mobile phones, undertook pre-measures in textism use, phonological awareness, reading and spelling. Children were matched for reading and allocated to either a control or an experimental group. Both groups received a 30 minute texting intervention once a week for six weeks. The control group simply spent each session texting, whereas the experimental group completed activities translating and composing textisms. Following the intervention, children in the experimental group used more spontaneous textisms (in an elicited text) compared with controls. However, no significant differences between the groups were found in any of the literacy measures following the intervention. Implications for future research are discussed.
Supervisor: Hadwin, Julie Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: BF Psychology ; LB Theory and practice of education