The QWERTY Effect: Do Typed Words Create Emotions?

Categories: All About Touch Typing, News |

We’re happy to welcome you to the Typesy blog, your source for touch typing tips, details of new typing techniques, and everything you need to increase your typing speed, from quick and easy exercises to the latest in keyboard innovations. We’ll also tell you about interesting things we find in the news that relate to typing skills, like the research study completed recently that looked at the emotional impact of words typed with different letter combinations on a standard QWERTY keyboard. This study looked at the way typing has become another method of processing words (word processing – get it?) just like listening and reading and speaking and writing by hand. In essence, the researchers found that people “feel” words through their fingers as they type them.

When we’re listening to someone talk, we unconsciously assign emotion to words depending on their tone of voice. This happens even if there’s no logical match between the actual words and the sound of the voice. For example, if you yell angrily at someone, saying, “Here’s some delicious candy!” the emotion they’ll feel will not be a happy one, even if they love candy. This study found that there’s an emotional effect created by typing words as well, and one that doesn’t necessarily have any connection to the meaning of those words. What the research study found is that when the letters in a word are typed mostly with the right hand, the words create a more positive feeling. This result was found in all groups of people tested, whether they were touch typists or not, left- or right-handed, or even non-English-speaking (Spanish and Danish test subjects were included in the study as well). As a proof that there was no direct connection between a word’s meaning and the emotion created when that word was typed, the study also used nonsense words with specific left/right letter combinations, with the same results.

“Happy” is one of the words typed primarily with the right hand, so typing it out may make you feel happy too. We’re delighted that you’re here, and hope that you enjoy using Typesy to get the typing skills you need and want. Keep the Typesy blog bookmarked and we’ll keep bringing you interesting and useful information on touch typing!

Reference: Psychonomic Bulletin & Review, June 2012, Volume 19, Issue 3, pp 499-504.
The QWERTY Effect: How typing shapes the meanings of words. Kyle Jasmin, Daniel Casasanto
You can read the full article here.

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