Session 3: ASCENT OF E-READERS
Anne Mangen (NO) - Why Bother With Print? Reflections on the Role of Fixity, Linearity and Structure for Sustained Reading
Conference Day 1, May 20, Den Haag, 15.45 – 17.30
In discussions on the future of reading, a frequent claim is that the medium of print can be easily dismissed – indeed, that it should be discarded and replaced by digital equivalents – e.g., e-books. Whether it is e-books of the Kindle type based on electronic ink, or the heavily promoted touch screen iPad, a common view is that e-books add to and enhance the experience and skill of reading, by replacing the fixity and the static (and, by implication, limiting) linearity of print with multimedia features, interactivity, hyperstructure and virtually limitless possibilities for non-verbal, interactive, reading and communication for the reader.Thistalkwillreflectontheclaimed virtues of such features in the light of what we know about reading as a cognitive process, and in particular sustained reading of longer, verbal texts. What do empirical studies say about the potential educational values of such features? In what ways, and why, might it matter if we replace paper with iPad in reading instruction, for instance in supporting reading comprehension of complex texts?