There's no consensus where reading on — and teaching with — digital devices is concerned.

2014 has seen an influx of articles stating that when using digital devices people tend to read less "deeply" than they do when reading print. Some people claim that they have trouble remembering even important plot points when they read on tablets or other electronic devices.

This sounds bad for digital reading!

But the subject hasn't been researched often — and the studies that have been performed have had a wide range of results. Some studies claim that there's no measurable difference between reading on print and on screen. Some claim that reading on screen is better for comprehension — especially for dyslexic students.

One common refrain among many of these studies, however, is that reading printed materials and reading digital screens may actually be two disparate skills; the difference in comprehension may not be due solely to the medium but to the reader's experience level with reading in that medium as well. It may be that readers need to adjust their reading habits when shifting to digital.

If reading on digital devices does dampen deep reading, annotating might be the antidote. One advantage digital has over print is that students who annotate passages in digital books aren't leaving permanent marks — the digital book can be wiped clean of annotations and used again by the next student. Writing annotations tends to help readers become more engaged, so this can only be a good thing.

What do you think about the digital vs. print debate? Have you tried any digital reading platforms in your classroom? Tell us about your experiences in the comments!

And if you want to try a digital reading platform with free texts and annotation features, why not give Prestwick House Digital a shot? It's free to try, so there's nothing to lose.