DCPLive is a blog by library staff at the DeKalb County Public Library!
Dec 17 2007

“To Read or Not to Read”: NEA Study Finds Americans Reading Less

by Nolan R

A recent story on NPR’s show “Talk of the Nation” focused on a new National Endowment of the Arts study that finds Americans are not only reading less for fun, but reading less in general. 

This study contains some disturbing statistics:

  • On average, Americans ages 15 to 24 spend almost two hours a day watching TV, and only seven minutes of their daily leisure time on reading
  • Reading scores for American adults of almost all education levels have deteriorated, notably among the best-educated groups.
  • Less than one-third of 13-year-olds are daily readers, a 14 percent decline from 20 years earlier.

NEA’s website states: “To Read or Not To Read expands the investigation of the NEA’s landmark 2004 report, Reading at Risk. While that report focused mainly on literary reading trends, To Read or Not To Read looks at all varieties of reading, including fiction and nonfiction genres in various formats such as books, magazines, newspapers, and online reading. Whereas the earlier report assessed reading among adults age 18 and older, To Read or Not To Read analyzes reading trends for youth and adults, and readers of various education levels.”

Click HERE to read more or download the complete study from NEA.

Click HERE for NPR’s audio report on the study, online discussions, and related links.

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