There’s been a lot of noise in the press about people reading less, how the book is dead, and that’s leading to the decline of civilization in general. But Justin Marquis, professor of educational technology at Indiana University, reported in a recent blog post for Online Universities that the tide just might be turning.
Marquis points to research done in 2007 by the National Endowment for the Arts that showed reading was on the decline. It suggested college freshmen were not reading for pleasure and that online reading wasn’t helping.
Fast-forward five years and that just might be changing. The Pew Internet & American Life Project’s release of findings in April indicating young people are now actually reading more, and e-readers are part of the reason. The report implies availability of e-reading devices coupled with decreasing e-book prices is having a positive effect on student reading habits.
Marquis isn’t claiming the fight is far from over. In fact, while pointing out the many benefits of higher levels of reading among young people, he also documented that the number of Americans over the age of 18 who had read no books at all in the 12 months before the survey.