The Chronicle of Higher Education released a study on how people read on screen. The study was conducted by Jakob Nielson, who tested 232 people, and these were the discoveries:

  • Only one in six people read web pages linearly.
  • Most read in the F-pattern: “users read read all the way across, but as they proceed their descent quickens and horizontal sight contracts, with a slowndown around the middle of the page. Near the bottom, eyes move almost vertically, the lower-right corner of the page largely ignored.
  • “Screen reading” is not really reading: “it breaks down in the face of a dense argument, a Modernist poem, a long political tract, and academic reading.”

Source: Mark Bauerlein, “Online Literacy Is a Lesser Kind,” The Chronicle of Higher Education.

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