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Social Media Aren't Social

Could It Be Harming Young Adults’ Communication and Socialization Skills?

Topic Will Be Addressed at the 2012 ASHA Convention in Atlanta

(Rockville, MD - November 8, 2012)  

Editors: Presenter Mark Bauerlein Available for Interviews

Recent research indicates social media use among young adults in the United States has reached alarming levels. Media polling giant Nielsen reports young adults exchange more than 3,400 texts per month; and, according to the National School Boards Association, they spend 9 hours a week on social network platforms. The reasons why this increasing volume of non-oral communication is cause for concern will be addressed at the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association (ASHA) Annual Convention in Atlanta.

According to ASHA Convention presenter Mark Bauerlein, Emory University English professor and author of The Dumbest Generation: How the Digital Age Stupefies Young Americans and Jeopardizes Our Future, "Digital tools have plunged us into an extraordinary and unprecedented social experiment."

Bauerlein warns that U. S. teenagers are experiencing a new, unique socialization process. "With social media and personal technology devices, they live hyper-social lives—virtually connected with one another all the time and everywhere. This has never been the case before," Bauerlein says. "While many hail the Millennials as the smartest generation in human history, people shouldn’t overlook the hazards of radical changes like this."

In light of recent speech and hearing research and against bold predictions about the enormous potential of the digital age, Bauerlein’s comments are especially timely.

Bauerlein will present at 8:00 a.m. Friday, November 16, in the Sidney Marcus Ballroom at the Georgia World Congress Center. His presentation (Social Media Aren’t Social: Young Adults and Web 3.0, Session 1184) is one of the highlights of ASHA's Annual Convention, which takes place November 15–17 and features 3 days of workshops, paper sessions, and poster presentations.


About the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association
ASHA is the national professional, scientific, and credentialing association for more than 150,000 audiologists, speech-language pathologists, and speech, language, and hearing scientists. Audiologists specialize in preventing and assessing hearing and balance disorders as well as providing audiologic treatment including hearing aids. Speech-language pathologists identify, assess, and treat speech and language problems including swallowing disorders. For more information, please visit or call 800-498-2071.

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