The Use of Slang
The term “slang” refers to any word or phrase used in informal settings among certain groups of people (e.g. subcultures, regions, etc.). Slang can be a common word or phrase used in a new context (e.g. that jacket is “sick”), a new word or phrase (e.g. her hair is “on fleek”), or a combination of the two (e.g. “tope,” meaning “totally dope”). Despite how much it may confuse “outsiders,” slang serves an important function in the evolution of language by providing an outlet to test new expressions for common objects and emotions.
Slang found on social media sites and in text messages has become its own subdivision of language. These platforms frequently limit the number of characters used to convey messages, requiring users to develop shorter terms and more creative means by which to express themselves. As a result, various odd acronyms (e.g. LOL, OMG, FTW, IDK, etc.) and abbreviations (e.g. “b4″ for before, “2” for to/two/too, “u” for you, etc.) have become infused into everyday communication.
How Does Slang Affect Students in the Classroom?
The rampant use of social media/texting slang by teenagers is largely due to increased accessibility to mobile phones; 91% of teenagers polled in 2015 by the Pew Research Center reported going online at least occasionally from a mobile device. In addition, 73% of teenagers reported owning a mobile phone, and 91% of these teens used it for text messaging. An earlier poll conducted by Pew in 2008 found that 85% of teenagers engage in some form of online personal communication, confirming a small but significant rise in this trend.
Considering how many teenagers are using mobile devices to communicate on a daily basis, it’s not surprising to see anecdotes from teachers and college admissions officers regarding the poor verbal and writing skills they observe on a daily basis. A 2010 study in Communication Researchprovided evidence that frequent use of texting slang negatively impacted formal writing and daily communication, but positively affected informal writing.
Others argue that the use of internet slang improves language skills by permitting creativity through the development of new words and encouraging good editing skills in order to convey messages within short character limitations. Interestingly, the 2008 Pew study cited above found that while 60% of teens don’t consider texting or communicating on social media as “writing,” 64% admit to using this type of language in their schoolwork.
Does Slang Harm Writing Skills?
As mentioned before, there is some data available suggesting that excessive use of texting language impairs formal writing skills, though there is not a standard consensus on how to handle it. Slang is actually an integral part of society, where its use is important in developing and maintaining social bonds. Even professionals use some form of slang, typically called jargon, to simplify their lives and identify themselves to one another.
The use of slang is so important to some subcultures that it can lead to widening of the achievement gap between blacks and non-blacks within the American educational system. It is hypothesized that students must sometimes make a choice between whether to learn their subculture’s slang to fit in or learn proper English to succeed down the road. The need for social acceptance differs between cultures, thus those with a higher need for it would prefer to learn slang over proper English. Also, those that start out with a disadvantage in reading or writing skillsare more likely to be negatively affected by the use of slang, as it further limits their already impaired communication skills.
With these thoughts in mind, it is important for educators to understand and accept that today’s students will always be using mobile devices and social media to communicate with one another. It is equally important to teach students the difference between formal/professional writing and common slang. To this end, educators could leverage the increased use of and access to technology and the internet’s wealth of information and toolboxes to provide proper instruction on formal writing. Slang does have a place in society and learning, but students must be taught what that is and what the converse looks like in order to develop well-rounded communication skills.
List of Common Slang Terms
|Slang Term||Meaning||Commonly Found On…|
|LOL||Laughing out loud||Facebook, Twitter, Text|
|BRB||Be right back||Text, Gaming|
|IDK||I don’t know||Facebook, Twitter, Text|
|BTW||By the way||Facebook, Twitter, Text|
|IRL||In real life||Facebook, Twitter, Text|
|2nite||tonight||Facebook, Twitter, Text|
|b4||before||Facebook, Twitter, Text|
|OIC||Oh i see||Facebook, Twitter, Text|
|FTW||For the win||Facebook, Twitter, Gaming|
|GTG||Got to go||Text|
|TTYL||Talk to you later||Text|
You May Also Like This
BBnaija: Efe Wins Not By God’s Grace As It Is ‘Immoral’– Evangelist Mike Bamiloye
Founder of Mount Zion Ministries, Evangelist Mike Bamiloye, has cautioned pastors against making reference to ...read more
Read This As Soon As Possible! It Is Being Deleted From Everywhere Because It Is More Efficient Than Any Medicine!
The drink we are presenting you today is one of the most beneficial and effective ...read more
Calling All Educators: What Do You Care About?
Calling on all teachers, administrators, and education specialists! We want to hear from you! To ensure ...read more
Is Technology Holding Students Back?
Is technology a panacea or a plague in the classroom? The honest answer is “neither”, ...read more
Which Learning Style Works For You?
It wouldn’t come as a shock for most teachers to hear that the way students ...read more
I Will Teach Girls How To Prevent Early Pregnancy– Stephanie Okereke-Linus
Multiple award winning Producer and actress, Stephanie Linus-Okereke, has vowed to provide teenage girls with ...read more
Don’t Weep for Public Education Just Yet!
Betsy DeVos’ nomination and confirmation as the Trump administration’s Secretary of Education have been a ...read more
Teaching Students Good Digital Citizenship
Teachers have long understood the importance of instilling good citizenship in their students, focusing on ...read more
RECIPE!! Okra Water Cures Diabetes, Asthma, Cholesterol And Kidney Diseases. Here Is How To Prepare It At Home!!
The name okra is most often used in the UK, United States and the Philippines, ...read more
Primary School Pupils Arrested For Not Doing Their Home Works in Enugu
Sometimes, you just can’t believe what happens in this country. We have seen a lot ...read more
LADIES!!! Watch Natural Ways To Tighten Your Va gina Without Any Surgery Or Drug
How to tighten your vagina: There are many people who believe that it’s possible that, ...read more
Podcasts and the Classroom
Chances are, even if you’ve never listened to a podcast before, you’ve heard about one. ...read more
5 Innovative Mind-Mapping Tools For Education
What do you do when you have an elaborate project, assignment, or paper that needs ...read more
1,000 Education Apps Organized By Subject & Price
Sure, there are plenty of apps you can use in education. There are even apps ...read more
Bringing Art Back With Technology
With continued budget cuts, a greater focus on math and reading education, and an enduring ...read more
The Pros and Cons of Technology
Using technology in the classroom is one of those issues that makes it easy to ...read more
Head of the Class: 2016’s Top Technology
Like your students, educational technology is constantly evolving. The best digital resources–including apps, websites, video, ...read more
President Trump’s Education Agenda
When it comes to education, president-elect Donald Trump divulged few details regarding his plans for ...read more
What is ‘School Choice’?
As president-elect Donald Trump continues to unveil plans for his presidency, many Americans brace themselves ...read more
The One Present I Wish Parents Would Give My Students
The gifts that change your life are the ones you didn’t know you wanted in ...read more
Pastor Mike Bamiloye Blasts Other Pastors for Bringing Comedians To The Altar (Full Text)
Popular Christian drama veteran, Mike Bamiloye, of the Mount Zion Film Ministries, has unleashed a ...read more
How Do We Teach Kids to Use Smartphones Safely?
Most students use smartphones with unfiltered access to the Internet. Even worse, many students have ...read more
Cool Cat Teacher’s Gift List 2016 Edition
If you’ve ever struggled to buy presents like I do, you probably ask people what ...read more
How to Assign Homework without Wasting Everybody’s time
If you ever assign homework, you have likely dealt with the “Why does my child ...read more
4 Key Factors for Fantastic Formative Assessment
Too many times the research is completely disconnected from the classroom. But in today’s show, ...read more
How to Understand Cyberbullying: From a Teen’s Experience
When bad things happen – do kids have someone they trust? Are you that someone? ...read more
iBooks 2 and iTunes U: A Quick Review from a Teacher #edapp
The world is buzzing with the Apple announcements about their move into eTextbooks. As I ...read more
5 Essential Effective Blended Learning Best Practices
Online and face-to-face spaces blend to create a today’s classroom. Most schools have physical buildings. For purposes of ...read more
5 Ways to Resolve Social Media Misunderstandings and a conversation with @swpax
Misunderstandings happen. They happen on Twitter. They happen on Facebook. They happen in our lives. CASE ...read more
How Online Learning Works
What is Online Learning? With the use of technology on the rise, online learning continues to ...read more