Teens and young adults are more likely in their free time to check their Facebook page than read a book — and they are dumber for it, says English professor Mark Bauerlein. That is Bauerlein’s contention in The Dumbest Generation: How the Digital Age Stupefies Young Americans and Jeopardizes Our Future (Or, Don’t Trust Anyone Under 30), which was recently released in paperback, USA Today reports. Bauerlein, an English professor at Emory University in Atlanta, says Generation Y, ages 16-29, has been shaped by exposure to computer technology since elementary school. The cost, he says, outweighs the convenience. Kids are writing more than ever online or in text messages, but it’s not the kind of narrative skill needed as adults, he says. And social networking sites can give young users "the sense of them being the center of the universe." Gary Small, director of the Center of Aging at UCLA and co-author of iBrain: Surviving the Technological Alteration of the Modern Mind, disagrees, saying teens are just as smart as they ever were. They’re just smart in different ways, Small says…

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