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Reflection on Cognitively Accessible Language (Why We Should Care)

lizzieryann's picture

I found this article incredibly interesting. It reminded me of I topic I learned in an Intro Linguistics class called code-switching. Code-switching can be the ways in which a member of an underrepresented group adjusts their language, syntax, grammatical structure, behavior, and appearance to fit into the dominant culture. Essentially, code-switching allows one to transition from one social group to another by changing aspects of speech. Through code-switching, people can advance in their professional and personal life by conforming in ways that may be more “acceptable” within certain social contexts. Similarly, in academia, a certain lingo is expected. As mentioned in the article, this lingo is required in order to be published; however, individuals with learning disabilities could benefit from having academic research published in layman’s terms as opposed to complicated jargon. To me, this complex jargon acts as an unnecessary barrier to understand published research. In general, simpler phrasing would be helpful in academia in order to convey information more clearly and to allow individuals to more adeptly understand published research across disciplines that they may be unfamiliar with. Thus, I agree that it is important to integrate more accessible language into academia.