Dumbing down: hit or myth? 2

February 28, 2008

Why the secrecy of the unnamed writer at the unknown university? We academics are in the business of evidence-based research and need to know whether the literacy of students has declined or not and, if so, what to do about it.

I have been teaching for nearly 40 years and I am pleasurably surprised that widening participation hasn't resulted in any noticeable decline in the literacy of the students I teach.

I am currently reading a batch of essays in which I commend a number of students on the excellence of their use of English, and I have to advise only a small minority on how to improve their intelligibility.

It has always been thus, so let's stop moaning.

George MacDonald Ross
Department of philosophy
University of Leeds

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