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New Zealand To Allow 'Text-Speak' On Exams

CowboyNeal posted more than 7 years ago | from the beginning-of-the-end dept.

Education 421

ScentCone writes "New Zealand's Qualification Authority (which sets testing standards for the public schools) is confident that those grading papers will understand the meaning of students' responses, even if they use phone/IM-style text-speak. From the article: 'credit will be given if the answer "clearly shows the required understanding," even if it contains text-speak.' Many teachers are not amused, and critics say that the move will devalue NZ's equivalent of a high school diploma." Not to mention that graders will need to be restrained so they don't gouge their own eyes out. While in the medium of text messages, some shorthand might be in order, but I didn't realize that world paper, pencil, and ink shortages were so severe so that text-speak is necessary everywhere.

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Are they kidding? (5, Insightful)

Announcer (816755) | more than 7 years ago | (#16805320)

How are kids supposed to learn proper spelling & grammar?

Anyone remember "Ebonics"?

Re:Are they kidding? (5, Funny)

black mariah (654971) | more than 7 years ago | (#16805352)

Proper spelling and grammar are unnatural constructs foisted upon the world by upper class tits that needed another way to make themselves feel special.

Re:Are they kidding? (4, Funny)

Celt (125318) | more than 7 years ago | (#16805380)

and yet you condone it by using it in your post, you should stop writing altogether if it upsets you so much :)

What's wrong with his post? (1)

Jawood (1024129) | more than 7 years ago | (#16805562)

Proper spelling and grammar are unnatural constructs foisted upon the world by upper class tits that needed another way to make themselves feel special.

I looked at that sentence a few times and even looked some things up in "A Writer's Reference", Third Edition, by Diana Hacker. I don't see what the problem is with his grammar or spelling.

What is it?

And no, I'm not trying to slam you or anything; I am always trying to learn how to write and speak better.

Re:What's wrong with his post? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16805588)

OP meant that the GP condoned proper grammar and spelling by using it.

Re:What's wrong with his post? (5, Funny)

jawtheshark (198669) | more than 7 years ago | (#16805592)

You spelling and grammar knowlegde is perfectly fine, as far as I can tell (I'm a non english speaker though). On the other hand, you have serious problems with comprehension.

Re:What's wrong with his post? (5, Funny)

thrillseeker (518224) | more than 7 years ago | (#16805948)

On the other hand, you have serious problems with comprehension.

What?

Re:What's wrong with his post? (2, Informative)

pixr99 (560799) | more than 7 years ago | (#16805660)

There's nothing wrong with it. That's the point. It's an eloquently constructed commentary debunking proper writing. It ought to be modded funny.

Re:Are they kidding? (0, Redundant)

leon.gandalf (752828) | more than 7 years ago | (#16805416)

This realy should be modded as FUNNY....

Re:Are they kidding? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16805734)

It's already hilarious that it's modded (Score:0, Insightful)

Re:Are they kidding? (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16805500)

shit ya yo. fucking titties fucking uppah claas fukin titties yo. grammuh only dare to keeps the fucking lower class down yo!

Me shud B a fucking cee Eee OOh dat a fuckin' coperashun.

fuck yo!

cuz speelin dont be making you any smartur.fuck.

Re:Are they kidding? (1)

Mr. Picklesworth (931427) | more than 7 years ago | (#16805692)

And there you have it. Annoying, hm?
Thanks for the example!

(Glad I'm not a teacher in New Zealand...)

Re:Are they kidding? (2, Funny)

Walt Dismal (534799) | more than 7 years ago | (#16805714)

I could not have said it any more eloquently. Er, word up, homie. (hitting myself in head with a brick repeatedly until the feeling passes.)

Re:Are they kidding? (3, Insightful)

msromike (926441) | more than 7 years ago | (#16805866)

As an example, Perl (I will not use .NET as an example since this is Slashdot) depends on proper spelling and grammar used in unnatural constructs. Learning how to do things "properly" used to be a given, and something that the majority strived for. Now, "perfecting the details" (learning how to write in standard English for example) is an unnecessary a bother that cuts into time that is better used for watching MTV and such. We live in the land of "close enough." The problem is that in many cases close enough isn't good enough.

Re:Are they kidding? (5, Funny)

Hope Thelps (322083) | more than 7 years ago | (#16805424)

How are kids supposed to learn proper spelling & grammar?

From Slashdot of course.

Re:Are they kidding? (1)

An ominous Cow art (320322) | more than 7 years ago | (#16805770)

It's fun to make fun of Slashdot, but the spelling and grammar here, though not nearly perfect, is for the most part higher than most such sites, in my experience.

It's one of the things that keeps me here- chatspeek makes me grind my teeth together.

(Cue a half-dozen responses to this post by BIFF) :-)

Re:Are they kidding? (5, Funny)

Hogwash McFly (678207) | more than 7 years ago | (#16805542)

Pah, spelling and grammar is a holdover from stuffy, old academic rigidity. It has no place in today's classroom. We need to be moving forward as educators and leave all that 'history' behind. Now if you'll excuse me, I have a class on "Group sex: sharing can be caring" to teach to third graders.

Re:Are they kidding? (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16805584)

> How are kids supposed to learn proper spelling & grammar?

More to the point, how are they supposed to learn correct spelling and grammar in New Zealand? Kiwi English would be enough to make Henry Higgins slit his wrists on a fine spring afternoon.

 

Re:Are they kidding? (1)

Xanius (955737) | more than 7 years ago | (#16805668)

Ah that was good...*goes to find my fair lady just to watch him insult people* On topic though, I think we should nuke NZ. Any person or country that condones text-talk doesn't derserve to be around. Hell when I write a text message on my phone,which only happens rarely because if I need to talk to someone I'll just call them, I still use full words instead of "b4","CU" etc. I mean seriously, how bloody hard is it to write Y-O-U, I don't care if it makes the same sound as U, they aren't the same and people need to be hit hard when they use it.

Re:Are they kidding? (1)

HUADPE (903765) | more than 7 years ago | (#16805738)

I actually have set up autocorrect in Gaim to allow me to type "u" and have it replaced with "you." Also, "dont" becomes "don't", and "i" becomes "I." I get the convenience of typing fewer characters, and yet don't sound like a moron.

Re:Are they kidding? (1)

An ominous Cow art (320322) | more than 7 years ago | (#16805788)

[aol]
Me too!
[/aol]

Agreed. I try to teach by example.

Was there.... (1)

leon.gandalf (752828) | more than 7 years ago | (#16805336)

a competition to find something worse than Ebonics to use as an approved teaching language? What next is 1337 going to be aproved for essays?

Re:Was there.... (2, Funny)

dapsychous (1009353) | more than 7 years ago | (#16805620)

J00 h4V3 4 Pr0bl3m W17 l337? my h19h 5cH00L 1n5717u73d l337 7w0 y34rZ B3f0r3 3V3Ry0N3 3lZ3, 4nd 17 h45N'7 h4Mp3r3D MY 4B1L17Y 70 C0MMUn1C473 1n 4ny W4Y. 5Ur3, 17 w4Z d3B473d 0N 73h L0c4l n3WZ, 4nD 73H d3p4R7M3n7 0F 3DuC4710n H3Ld 155U3 W17 17, bU7 1 7ruly B3l13v3 7h47 4lL W3 l3375P33K3Rz r M0r3 5U173D pH0R 73H j0b M4Rk37 4Z 4 R35Ul7.

Re:Was there.... (1)

Thansal (999464) | more than 7 years ago | (#16805782)

I have spent WAY to much time playing FPS games, I can read that all fluently.

And he sin't even making it all that hard

j00 |-|4\/3 4 |*r0|3|_3m5 \/\/17 |33+?

I am not going any further.

Admitedly, learning leet does have a good purpose, you can make very secure passwords.

1) Take a word you will remember
2) Write it backwards/ROT13 or what ever you want
3) Leet it ussing substitutions you personaly use, if they alow non alphanumeric chars, all the better
4) ?????
5) Profit?

Re:Was there.... (1)

joe 155 (937621) | more than 7 years ago | (#16805904)

I too share your concern as a person who read that far easier than I would have hoped I could...
Your idea for passwords in l33t doesn't seem that great, sure it might be moderately secure but it might be harder to remember than just having something like "-85,/" before a simple word as a password, the word is really easy to remember and that stuff before it shouldn't be too difficult. This makes it at least as hard to brute force (ie. nearly impossible) and saves a little on the remembering.

Also, as a side note, "txt" speak is so much harder to read than l33t... at least l33t makes gramatical sense. Damn young 'uns

New Rulz ! (3, Insightful)

udippel (562132) | more than 7 years ago | (#16805964)

Wrong ! it is B4 instead of B3f0r3.
The Emporor's new clothes: The king is dead - Long live the king ! leet sp33k will |-|4v3 gr4m4

I 4 1 wlcm our new overlords: The leet sp33k Grammar Nazis

WHAT DO YOU EXPECT FROM A BUNCH OF SHEEP FUCKERS? (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16805338)

nt

If they are letting text speak through... (4, Funny)

LiquidCoooled (634315) | more than 7 years ago | (#16805342)

what about l33t sp33k?

t3h kn33 b0n3 15 c0nn3ct3d t0 teh th1g|-| b0n3!

appropriate (0, Redundant)

Digitus1337 (671442) | more than 7 years ago | (#16805344)

omfg

New Zealand? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16805346)

Moar leik 'new FAILland' amirite?

Re:New Zealand? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16805522)

ur doin it rite. that is all.

:P (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16805358)

I 4 1 wlcm our txtg ovrlrds ...and let the stupid texting jokes begin!

So... (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16805360)

Given your views on the matter, CowboyNeal, have you suggested to Rob Malda that spelling matters and aids effective communication? He'll probably fire you on the spot.

Does this mean... (3, Funny)

shawnseat (453587) | more than 7 years ago | (#16805384)

that frst pst is worth +5, insightful in New Zealand?

Indian Offshoring... (4, Insightful)

kisrael (134664) | more than 7 years ago | (#16805398)

Sometimes "text-speak" (surprised it's not "txt-spk") appears in odd places. Like 90% of the offshore folks from India I've interacted with, even in e-mail that was otherwise very professional and well written. Now some of these guys were bozos, but even for the ones that I knew were solid, smart workers...I just couldn't be sure if they even knew that "you" is not spelled "u"

Is "The Artist Formerly Know As" popular over there? I blame him for all this in general.

Re:Indian Offshoring... (4, Insightful)

x2A (858210) | more than 7 years ago | (#16805546)

Why? I mean, I actually get quite surprised whenever I see someone on slashdot spell 'lose' correctly, and that's from english-as-first-language ppl.

I'm quite picky with what I'll abreviate. You and for are such short words anyway, I think cutting down to 'u' and '4' is plain tacky, and makes you come across as being... well... somewhat cheap. But, as you can see, a six lettered word I don't mind so much, even on the internet, which is in fact where I picked that up, long before text messaging took off. Also, through and though have become thru and tho, but I do know the difference between thru and threw which I do see mixed up from time to time. Too and to are never 2, which should only mean two.

So I guess I don't have a fundamental problem with it, as long as ambiguity isn't formed, it remains easy to read, and you draw yourself a line so u dont spk lyk vis al du tym.

Re:Indian Offshoring... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16805678)

Umh, how about "ppl"? :D

Re:Indian Offshoring... (1)

x2A (858210) | more than 7 years ago | (#16805932)

I already pointed that out myself, as I said "But, as you can see, a six lettered word I don't mind so much"

Re:Indian Offshoring... (1)

udippel (562132) | more than 7 years ago | (#16805896)

Why? I mean, I actually get quite surprised whenever I see someone on slashdot spell 'lose' correctly, and that's from english-as-first-language ppl.

This is f***ing arrogant. /. isn't reserved for native English speakers; though your 'whenever I see someone' implies everyone was just that.
You're right, and at times I wonder if the non-english-as-first-language ppl were not better in grammar than the natives ?
With the help of the Kiwis, the latter will become a reality for future generations.

Re:Indian Offshoring... (1)

x2A (858210) | more than 7 years ago | (#16805984)

"This is f***ing arrogant"

That is so f***ing presumptuous. In my experience, it is native english speakers that make that mistake the most, including people I know *personally*. This is why I said I was talking about native speakers, because I *wouldn't* be so arrogant as to include second language speakers in such a comment.

"You're right"

Thank you ;-)

Yes, clarity is what really matters (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Brave Guy (457657) | more than 7 years ago | (#16805952)

So I guess I don't have a fundamental problem with it, as long as ambiguity isn't formed, it remains easy to read, and you draw yourself a line so u dont spk lyk vis al du tym.

That, I think, is the key thing: we're talking about communication here. Abbreviations that require the reader to think twice about the meaning of the writing are an impairment to efficient communication. Depending on the context, they may also be an indication that you consider your time spent writing to be more valuable than the reader's time, which tells the reader how little you value their consideration.

Certainly on on-line forums for students where I've helped out in the past, contributors would be far more willing to reply to a question that was carefully written to explain the problem clearly and concisely than to try to interpret vague L337sp33k or txt tlk because someone couldn't be bothered to write in proper English.

In other words, conventional shorthands are fine if they're used in an appropriate context. IMHO, few people reading this on Slashdot won't immediately understand this sentence. However, those who write poorly out of laziness should not be surprised to find that they come across as such, and are treated accordingly by those whose opinions of them might matter. I wouldn't write "IMHO" in a business report for an audience who might not be familiar with the shorthand.

Re:Indian Offshoring... (1)

fbjon (692006) | more than 7 years ago | (#16805568)

You mean Prince?

Re:Indian Offshoring... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16805644)

I know what you mean. I belong to the generation that came up with this stuff, and the reason it exists is simple economics. Now this is moving into places that it wasn't ment for. I can understand it if you send me a one or two line email that is filled with all kinds of shorthands (short and simple). BUT don't send me a 2-3 paragraph email where it looks like a simple replace was done to certain words and the vowels were taken out.

And business/formal emails... GOD, they are called BUSINESS/FORMAL emails!

I can also understand some poor grammer here and there, but incorrect spelling on purpose; it isn't "cool" or "techie" like many believe. It was cool the first one or two years it came out, but now like everything else, just retarded when used improperly.

Re:Indian Offshoring... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16805690)

They're trying to fit into American pop culture. Or something. Well, I know that Indian workers are definitely not the only ones succumbing to this; plenty of American workers do too.

Re:Indian Offshoring... (3, Insightful)

JaredOfEuropa (526365) | more than 7 years ago | (#16805712)

I just couldn't be sure if they even knew that "you" is not spelled "u"
I've seen the same from Indian, Malaysian and Chinese IT professionals, and given the level of their English, they must have known that "you" is spelled "y-o-u-".

Some of the Indians I work with get training in dealing with western cultures, i.e. western management style, conflict resolution with Westerners, and English colloquialisms. My guess is that the quality of such trainings vary... some people, always from the same one or two companies, put the oddest colloqualisms in their emails. They are technically correct, but they just look out of place in business communication. Writing "u" instead of "you" is just one of those things.

monkey phonics STILL not recognized (0, Troll)

marklar1 (670468) | more than 7 years ago | (#16805418)

I guess the monkey phonics thing never reallly caught on there...oh when will the descrimination end?

The nature of language (1, Offtopic)

herczy (1024845) | more than 7 years ago | (#16805442)

The nature of language is that you must maintain it in order to prevent it from devolving. You must be carefull to separate the jargon from the main language. If we say LOL out loud, it would definitely mean some sort of devolvation.

Re:The nature of language (2, Funny)

LouisZepher (643097) | more than 7 years ago | (#16805534)

"...some sort of devolvation..."

No results found for devolation [reference.com] ...

It looks like it's already devolving now.

Re:The nature of language (5, Funny)

joto (134244) | more than 7 years ago | (#16805600)

That's simply because "devolvation" is not dictionarified yet. But you comprehense it anyway.

Re:The nature of language (1)

An ominous Cow art (320322) | more than 7 years ago | (#16805812)

Please funnymod parpost.

Re:The nature of language (1)

herczy (1024845) | more than 7 years ago | (#16805636)

Sorry for my grammar (I'm Hungarian, best excuse ever), but I think I made with it my point. :-)

Re:The nature of language (1)

kemichail (965347) | more than 7 years ago | (#16805656)

I weep as I type this but I suspect you haven't been on voicechat during a world of warcraft raid....

Because they do, they do say it, they actually say LOL out loud...

Re:The nature of language (1)

pizzach (1011925) | more than 7 years ago | (#16805728)

I remember my brother said LOL once not too long back. I then had the sudden inexplicable urge to punch him.

Re:The nature of language (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16805844)

I've heard lawl, gee gee, pawn, a eff kay, bee are bee, and every other bit of text speek on voicechat. I didn't mind that so much, it's just part of the culture - but the day I realized I'd become a cranky old man was the day I started getting a serious urge to haul off and smack the crap out of people who type "ne1", "u", "r", "ppl", or "2".

Re:The nature of language (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16805666)

Actully, a retard druid in our WoW guild insists on saying "LOL" on VT. I can live with the PURRRR and ROARRRR on VT, but a druid saying LOL, please...

Re:The nature of language (3, Funny)

wkitchen (581276) | more than 7 years ago | (#16805748)

If we say LOL out loud,
Let me guess. You're from the DOR Department, right?

Re:The nature of language (1)

nutshell42 (557890) | more than 7 years ago | (#16805784)

The nature of language is that you must maintain it in order to prevent it from devolving. You must be carefull to separate the jargon from the main language. If we say LOL out loud, it would definitely mean some sort of devolvation.

According to what metric would adding a new word to a language be some kind of devolution? Noone forces you to use it and it doesn't reduce your ability to express yourself with existing words. This is like France's crusade against the word "computer" and it makes even less sense for English because half the language's derived from French or directly from Latin.

Using "literally" when you mean "figuratively" is what I'd call devolution because you rob the language of an easy way of saying "literally" just to add one more possibility to the myriad of existing ones to express that you don't really mean what you're saying.

Re:The nature of language (1)

herczy (1024845) | more than 7 years ago | (#16805840)

I'm not saying that it's a bad thing to include LOL or other text-speak word into the "core language," but it's too early to say that it will do any good or bad to it. A little time is needed. But it's your language, do what you want to do with it.

Re:The nature of language (1)

marian_ivanco (1025956) | more than 7 years ago | (#16805852)

I think You are wrong, the nature of language is the fact that it is used by people to communicate if they understand each other thats fine. They will create the best language.

I'm growing increasingly concerned.... (3, Insightful)

TomHandy (578620) | more than 7 years ago | (#16805450)

That a generation or two from now, the entire English language is going to primarily be reduced to textspeak and leetspeak or something.

One thing that would give me hope though is that textspeak is really only required right now because with so many modern phones, text input is still cumbersome, so it is a necessity. Seemingly when new technologies come into place which would make text entry more efficient (maybe better predictive text input, speech-to-text built into phones, etc.) textspeak won't even be needed.

At least that's what I hope for.

yeah, imagine that ! (1)

DrSkwid (118965) | more than 7 years ago | (#16805652)

Re:yeah, imagine that ! (2, Interesting)

TomHandy (578620) | more than 7 years ago | (#16805736)

Right, that's actually sort of what I was thinking of really. I fully understand and accept that the English language has changed dramatically over the centuries, especially compared to Old English, and that it's a common thing for the language to continue to change and evolve based on how people actually use it.

I'm mainly just thinking that it would be kind of a shame if the language (at least the spelling, and some of the grammar), does turn into textspeak as a standard characteristic of the language.

Then again, who knows, maybe it is more efficient?

Re:I'm growing increasingly concerned.... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16805834)

LG's T9/Word works fine for me (1)

caveat (26803) | more than 7 years ago | (#16805978)

The predictive text input on LG phones is fast and complete enough that I can send proper English texts faster than abbreviating with conventional ABC input. It's different for different manufacturers, I know Motorola's is next to unusable and I hear Samsung's is iffy, but mine is great.

IOW (1)

Hope Thelps (322083) | more than 7 years ago | (#16805464)

In illiterate New Zealand, exm brd mipsells U!

In some ways, it is not that new (0, Redundant)

happyrabit (942015) | more than 7 years ago | (#16805468)

We could use abbreviated words on our exams before mobiles sms where common, it where the kind of abbreviations we used to note quickly what the professor told us in class, but it was probably less worse than actual text-speech of the younger generations :) Our abbreviated words where mostly the first and last letter with a line drawn uppon it, and those where allowed by the professors.
I want give any concrete examples as it was not in English, but in more mathematical courses we could write // instead of parallelism.
So it is not that new, but there are surely more 'abbreviated' words now.
But then again, I do not think it is that good for the students, and it want do them any good in their later professional life where communication skills are very important.

Re:In some ways, it is not that new (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16805624)

What you have described is standard notation. In math and science there is a lot of it. In fact you cannot properly describe things without it. Take for example capital sigma representing summation. That would be particularly difficult to write out everytime you needed to describe a sum. I think you should realize where notation is an agreed upon standard for writing things whereas text-speak isn't.

and it want do them any good in their later professional life where communication skills are very important.

Yes, you are correct. But, it's absolutely necessary to learn notation that in order to work properly with professionals.

Re:In some ways, it is not that new (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16805868)

You're right about some of the notation being the proper ways to express things: sigma, etc. However, from my math/physics studies,
I remember other accepted terms such as b/c, w.r.t (with respect to), and I think a triangle for 'therefore', although that might be more of what you're talking about since I think it was derived from math proof-speak.

Re:In some ways, it is not that new (1)

Thansal (999464) | more than 7 years ago | (#16805914)

the triangle is standard, w.r.t I THINK is also standard, b/c I am not so sure of, though it might be. (b/c is common for proffs who are putting something up on a blackboard).

Re:In some ways, it is not that new (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16805824)

I'm not a Grammar/Spelling/"General Use of English" Nazi.

But "less worse", "where" instead of "were", "want" instead of "won't" - please don't comment on others use of a language you barely have hold on yourself.

Plain inaccurate (5, Informative)

mscnln (785138) | more than 7 years ago | (#16805472)

Bali Haque, deputy chief executive of the authority, said there had been no change to guidelines and there was no specific policy about text language. However, he warned: "If people are expecting they can come up with an exam script full of text and pass, then they're dreaming. http://www.nzherald.co.nz/section/story.cfm?c_id=1 &ObjectID=10410066 [nzherald.co.nz]

Re:Plain inaccurate (1)

SRain315 (322069) | more than 7 years ago | (#16805790)

This was covered in plenty of detail yesterday morning on Language Log [upenn.edu] . See this post [upenn.edu] .
It's just like Snopes [snopes.com] is for urban legends. If you see a funny language article, check Language Log first.

Re:Plain inaccurate (1)

26199 (577806) | more than 7 years ago | (#16805830)

That's what I suspected... it's always been the case that you're marked on what you're able to demonstrate that you know. If text speak demonstrates the required knowledge/understanding, that's fine.

It seems unlikely that it would work in an English exam, obviously. You'd lose marks for spelling/grammar, even if it's technically possible to get the marks for understanding.

It's quite similar to the fact that I can get away with having atrocious handwriting as long as it's good enough to be understood. Something which I'm quite thankful for, incidentally.

The obvious solution is... (1)

Channard (693317) | more than 7 years ago | (#16805550)

.. to let teachers set assigments and mark in text speak too. Let's see parents try doing their homework for their kids when they can't understand a damn word of it. In other words 'U FL GO STR8 2 MACCYDS'

WTF? (2, Funny)

GillBates0 (664202) | more than 7 years ago | (#16805552)

ORLY WTF?

The meaning behind "Credit will be given"? (2, Insightful)

malkavian (9512) | more than 7 years ago | (#16805558)

That could hide many things. After all, understanding the subject isn't the whole of the mark. Communicating it also carries a non-trivial mark.
If the examiner can't correctly work out what the writer is trying to say, then marks will be lost. Presentation also carries a portion of the mark in most subjects, and using txt spk will almost certainly lose that.
So, it's basically allowing people to use txt spk, and actually have a non-zero mark (credit given for the understanding of the subject where it's communicated successfully), but in all probability, they won't be garnering the kind of mark they would otherwise be achieving if they used correct English.
It's possibly the kind of discrepancy that would make the difference between a fail and an average pass mark (depending on how obfuscated the text was by using txt spk).

Which subject? (3, Insightful)

vadim_t (324782) | more than 7 years ago | (#16805564)

Text speak in an English exam of course should result in failing it. On the other hand, I think bad grammar and spelling should be ignored on a math or a chemistry exam, so long the answer is understandable.

Presentation matters. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16805862)

I take it you rarely grade a couple of hundred exams. It makes a huge difference in how long it takes. And believe it or not, if I can choose between spending one or two weeks on grading exams, I choose the former.

Respect your reader, he deserves it.

Re:Presentation matters. (1)

mqduck (232646) | more than 7 years ago | (#16806020)

I take it you rarely grade a couple of hundred exams. It makes a huge difference in how long it takes. And believe it or not, if I can choose between spending one or two weeks on grading exams, I choose the former.


Sure, require your stupids to write "properly." Sure, hit them over the head if they don't. But having it effect their math grade doesn't make any sense.

Re:Which subject? (1)

the eric conspiracy (20178) | more than 7 years ago | (#16805870)

I disagree that the problem should be ignored. If the grammar and spelling is actually bad, rather than just an occasional error the problem should be brought to the writer's attention, and perhaps the student should be referred for some additional help.

Re:Which subject? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16805970)

The point of English is to teach proper grammar and Spelling and so that should be a fail or pass type of thing. For Science or Math, I agree, it should and from personal experience IS ignored on both course assignments and exams, as long as it's understandable. I've used Acronyms in Science essays and as long as I provide an index of acronyms my science teachers have not said a thing. In fact they were the one to suggest it in the first place to reduce keystrokes.

Re:Which subject? (1)

msromike (926441) | more than 7 years ago | (#16805974)

How would a graduate mathemtician communicate with a chemist, via let's say a professional journal, if she didn't know how to write in standard English? I can see it now, the cover article ofr the January 2025 Scientific American will start with, "got kewl idea 4 u 2 scope."

Re:Which subject? (4, Insightful)

Coryoth (254751) | more than 7 years ago | (#16805990)

Text speak in an English exam of course should result in failing it. On the other hand, I think bad grammar and spelling should be ignored on a math or a chemistry exam, so long the answer is understandable.

Really? Why? Are mathematicians and chemists not required to communicate? I can understand, perhaps, allowing a little more leeway, given that it is not specifically the subject being tested, but ultimately spelling and grammar matters. A large part of mathematics is being able to clearly communicate your reasoning to other people. Now mathematics does provide its own language and symbols to do a lot of that communication, however as someone who grades math papers, I am as sensitive to misuse of mathematical symbols as I am to misspelling and poor grammar, and I will mark people down for either if it is consistently poor (I will tolerate occasional mistakes). Any ambiguity introduced undermines the entire mathematical argument. Whether it "can be understood" is not enough - markers should not be required to try and figure out what a student meant: what they mean should be immediately clear, and that is an important part of the subject.

What is this going to lead to..... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16805598)

This is diminishing the importance of the English language. If 'txt spk' is allowed in exams, where else is this going to expand to, the work place, in which case 'txt spk' would become an accepted form of written communication. Not everyone understands the abbrieviations used, in which case it could be said that the communication is selective. Does this also mean that the students which use 'txt spk' in their exams will get higher credit if they havre given a greater amount of information than those using the full english versions, as it is less time consuming to use 'txt spk'. This can't lead to anything good...

Re:What is this going to lead to..... (1)

phlegmofdiscontent (459470) | more than 7 years ago | (#16805938)

So using large words would be out as well . . . since that limits who may understand in a different fashion.

And so it begins. (2)

pair-a-noyd (594371) | more than 7 years ago | (#16805606)

Doubleplusgood..

Algebra and physics exams!?! (1)

rHBa (976986) | more than 7 years ago | (#16805608)

I can see algebraic equations getting very confusing!

3 = mc^2 anyone?

Next you know (1)

Telastyn (206146) | more than 7 years ago | (#16805616)

kids will be allowed to use calculators in Science class!

Graffiti (1)

camperdave (969942) | more than 7 years ago | (#16805670)

Thanks to my Handspring Visor (a major outlet for me for hand writing) I have to stop and think about how to form a K when writing on paper. I automatically make the Graffiti version.

Re:Graffiti (1)

VGPowerlord (621254) | more than 7 years ago | (#16805724)

People still write? When I want a k on a piece of paper, I hit the key between j and l.

Re:Graffiti (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16805762)

Well, at least you don't write every character in the same place on the piece of paper.

Re:Graffiti (1)

Thansal (999464) | more than 7 years ago | (#16805882)

He, for a long time I had the same problem.

In college I rarely actualy wrote something down, it either went into my visor (it was a sad day when the screen broke and I found out that they no longer exist) or was typed directly into my computer. The few times I actualy had to write something (generaly for a test) I would sit there and have ot remind my self not to write a 7 instead of a T, how K and E are formed, and a slew of other horrible things...

Simple answer. (-1, Troll)

bluefoxlucid (723572) | more than 7 years ago | (#16805696)

This is very simple. New Zealand is full of shit tarts. It may not sound professional, or politically correct, but dammit sometimes you need to acknowledge the ugly truth.

Text readin (1)

matt me (850665) | more than 7 years ago | (#16805702)

I still read exams as emacs.

Obligatory Futurama Reference (2, Interesting)

ari_j (90255) | more than 7 years ago | (#16805706)

Fry: I tell you, bein' here really brings me back to my college days. (Flashback to Coney Island Community College.) Good old Coney Island College. Go Whitefish!
Leela: Don't take this the wrong way, Fry, but you don't seem like the educated type.
Fry: Oh yeah? (Produces Notice of Failure to Graduated from CICC.) Read it and weep. I'm a certified college drop-out.
Leela: Please. Everyone knows twentieth century colleges were basically expensive day care centers.
Professor: That's true. By current academic standards, you're merely a high school dropout.
Fry: What? That's not fair. I deserve the same respect any other college dropout gets. By God, I'm going to enroll here at Mars University and drop out all over again!

Subject (1)

Legion303 (97901) | more than 7 years ago | (#16805708)

If only there were some sort of common, standardized symbolism New Zealanders could use to convey their thoughts! They could call it a "language" or something like that.

Are the graders allowed to mark the exam with (3, Funny)

antifoidulus (807088) | more than 7 years ago | (#16805746)

text speak? Such as "u r an 1d10t" or "u fail it"

Sheepish Trolling (1)

sciop101 (583286) | more than 7 years ago | (#16805860)

Students can concentrate on sheep herding, sheep shearing, and sheep breeding!

Shepherd's pie for lunch!

As someone who grades papers: (2, Funny)

failure-man (870605) | more than 7 years ago | (#16805898)

u fl dk
g, su me
i dr

IAAEM (2, Funny)

Deliveranc3 (629997) | more than 7 years ago | (#16805928)

I am an english major.

In some poor parts of the world an English degree means studying how to spell and speak properly.

This is exceedingly unfortunate because the true value of an appreciation of English comes from the ability to understand the nuances of a persons expressions, and in turn to control ones own nuances.

As a Comp Sci major I think the best way to explain this would be to say that it adds bandwidth to people's ability to communicate, before I became an English major I thought it would add bandwidth in the way facial expressions do. Now I understand that a true understanding of English adds more bandwidth than anything short of the original use of language.

This is difficult to explain to people who are so used to people using casual expressions and syntax and choosing topics without enough thought.

When an author puts a word on a page that is the word he has chosen and he has chosen it for a reason, he chose it instead of every other word there is.

Anyway, I'm disgusted with New Zealanders, fortunately in my country approx 50-60% of people end up going to university, and they call it university because your forced to take English.

Cheers!
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