Do learners use a bottom-up learning process which shifts from implicit to explicit knowledge, or top-down, learning which goes from explicit to implicit?
Online reading has become a major source in the field of ELT. It is easy to access, up to date and diverse, but it relies on self-regulated reading strategies to construct meaning.
As teachers, we need to help learners cognitively respond to online texts and attempt to reduce the many distractions that reading on the internet can offer. Does it really matter if they are reading anyway? Well, yes, it has been argued, (Barbules 1998), that the linear nature of printed texts makes them selective and exclusive, whereas there is no limit to the distractions online texts can provide; voice threads, further links, moving images, audio, pop ups… which means that different strategies need to be employed to filter the information and ensure that input, storage and retrieval are as effective as they would be with exposure to a static printed text.