Is txting making u stupider? Probz not! LOLz!
At least a few educators (enough educators to get a piece published online) were worried that texting (and tweeting) would "hinder students' willingness and ability to write longer texts and think critically about complicated subject areas." And thus a scientific study was conducted!
In the study, called "Undergraduates' attitudes to text messaging language use and intrusions of textisms into formal writing," three universities (U of Tasmania and Newcastle in Australia and U of Albert in Canada) asked their students to "rate the appropriateness of textism use in various situations."
In the first, 86 Australian and 150 Canadian undergraduates were surveyed regarding the appropriateness of "textisms" in various contexts.
Participants in both countries (there were no significant difference between the Australian and Canadian samples) considered them most appropriate while texting a friend or a sibling, or during online chats with people in those categories. Few considered their usage appropriate when texting an older family member, and even fewer when communicating with a stranger.
Because grandma won't understand "LOL" no matter how many times you explain it.
In a second study:
We checked the examination papers of a separate sample of 153 Australian undergraduates for the presence of textisms. Only a negligible number were found...[and] students are able to avoid textism use in exams despite media reports to the contrary.
The research shows, "Only a very small percentage of words written in these exam papers could be counted as textisms" (only 0.01 percent, to be exact). Meanwhile, "43 of these occurred in a single student's paper."
So texting may have made that dude stupid. Though the study notes that the case may not be the same for "children [who begin] texting at earlier ages," college students at least have "a clear sense of when this often-clever shorthand is and isn't called for."
In fact, the biggest issue may not have been texting related at all: Apostrophes. People don't know how to use ‘em! And though the study does not delve into it, we feel it worth noting that Microsoft Spell Check is the true downfall of writing (nobody knows how to spell anymore) and Emojis won't make you a worse writer. That's art.