Re[2]: Does hyphenation make reading hard for ESLers?

Subject: Re[2]: Does hyphenation make reading hard for ESLers?
From: "k.laneuville" <k -dot- laneuville -at- HILL -dot- COM>
Date: Fri, 16 Feb 1996 13:49:46 EST

>I avoid hyphenation, even when writing for native speakers. You don't
>gain that much paper real estate by hyphenating, and it usually slows
>down the reader.

>Yes, but with justified text you get rivers of white, especially in narrow
>measures, and ragged text is very ragged. I think visual attractiveness
>contributes to readability.

>BTW what is ESL? Educationally Sub L?????


ESL stands for English as a Second Language.

The answer is yes, hyphenation definitely slows downs student of English as
a second or other language. Most students don't understand the rules behind
hyphenation and even when they do, it is difficult for them to follow the
text and reconstruct the words in their heads. ESLers would have to be at a
very high level for hyphenation not to interfere with
readability/understandablility.

I guess the white space vs. hyphenation question then would really depend
on who your audience is.

Kara (k -dot- laneuville -at- hill -dot- com)
Tech. Editor with an MA in TESL (T for teaching)


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