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Reading in a Participatory Culture

A set of suggestions on how to meet people where they are.

Designer Librarian

Earlier this week, an article in the Chronicle of Higher Education caught my eye: Students May Be Reading Plenty, but Not for Class

Turns out, a new study found students are reading a lot more than we thought. But, 40% of that reading is done on social media (and often during class).

Of course, some might argue that social media is not “real” reading. Though, that kind of thinking fails to recognize the cultural shifts that social media has brought. Students are now reading in a participatory culture.

On the one hand, social media is creating new literacies. On the other hand, there is legitimate concern that this type of reading is negatively impacting the skills that more traditional reading practices develop. What is this doing to vocabulary development and reading comprehension skills? What effect is this having on academic learning. Anecdotally, I would say a lot. And we know…

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