Someone who lacks literacy is illiterate or barely literate; is there a similar noun or phrase to describe someone who can barely type?

"Barely able to type" doesn't roll off the tongue very well.

  • How much does it matter that a phrase or expression "rolls off the tongue"? Commented Aug 20, 2020 at 8:50
  • @MichaelHarvey When you attempt to combine it with "illiterate" in the same sentence, "barely able to type" doesn't work too well.
    – Ian Kemp
    Commented Aug 20, 2020 at 9:06
  • @MichaelHarvey ideally, everything you say should sound nice, or at least not ill-fitting. This is most true of public speakers, but it can be true of other native speakers, and I would argue that it’s most important to non-native speakers, who want to find expressions for things to demonstrate their knowledge of English, for any number of reasons (a job or job interview, impress people they know, etc., etc.). Commented Aug 20, 2020 at 9:30
  • @MichaelHarvey we have word-request and phrase-request for this reason; that you can find succinct expressions so that you don’t have to spell things out at great length. Commented Aug 20, 2020 at 9:32
  • I would merely say that someone is, or is not, a a skilled typist. The art of typing has not been in existence long enough to have acquired a compact expression for ability or the lack of it, unlike writing. Commented Aug 20, 2020 at 9:55

1 Answer 1


The term that might be the most relevant is computer illiterate, as those who can’t type well usually don’t know their way around a computer at all. But there are some other terms that you could use with slightly different meanings.

Typing illiterate. While this isn’t a term I’ve heard used before, you can find plenty of examples of it online.

Typing impaired. Again, there are examples of it online.

Hunt and peck. This is a specific poor typing style where a person uses two fingers to type and has to stare intently at the keyboard to hit the right keys. There is a noun version.

Fat finger. It means being clumsy at typing, usually by accidentally typing multiple keys at once.

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .