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Slang and Academic Discourse. What Is Slang?. Slang is informal language consisting of words and expressions considered appropriate for informal, friendly, and everyday use. When Is Slang Appropriate?. Consider your audience. How do you say “hello” to these audiences?. Best Friend.

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Slang and Academic Discourse


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what is slang
What Is Slang?

Slang is informal language consisting of words and expressions considered appropriate for informal, friendly, and everyday use.

when is slang appropriate
When Is Slang Appropriate?
  • Consider your audience.
  • How do you say “hello” to these audiences?

Best Friend

Significant Other

Mother

Professor

Boss

  • Which audience is most formal? Did you use slang?
  • Which audience is least formal? Did you use slang?
why use slang
Why Use Slang?
  • It’s informal.
  • It associates you with a specific region or community.
  • It expresses your personality and background.
what is academic discourse
What Is Academic Discourse?
  • Discourse
    • communication of thoughts by using words
  • Academic
    • of or pertaining to a college, academy, school, or other educational institution, especially one for higher education
  • Academic Discourse
    • formal language considered appropriate for academic and professional use
when is academic discourse appropriate
When Is Academic Discourse Appropriate?
  • Consider your audience.
  • In which of the following circumstances would you use academic discourse?

Cover Letter for a Job

Research Paper

Email to a Friend

Thank You Card

Text Message

why use academic discourse
Why Use Academic Discourse?
  • It’s formal.
  • It’s easier for a diverse audience to understand.
  • It’s expected in college-level and formal writing.
  • *NOTE*
  • Your aim is clarity, not “sounding smart.” Use words that say what you mean, not words you think sound academic.
when is slang appropriate in academic writing
When Is Slang Appropriate in Academic Writing?
  • when repeating dialogue
  • when composing personal essays
  • when it is the MOST accurate word
when is slang appropriate in academic writing1
When Is Slang Appropriate in Academic Writing?

If using slang in academic writing, it still must be

  • spelled correctly
  • punctuated correctly
  • appropriate for the writing assignment
  • appropriate for the audience
  • defined if necessary
when is slang appropriate in academic writing2
When Is Slang Appropriate in Academic Writing?

Remember, academic writing is formal, so most types of formal writing will require you to stay away from slang.

You must learn how to find slang terms in your own writing and translate them into more formal words.

techniques and translation
Techniques and Translation

Find slang in your writing:

  • Consider your audience while you write.
  • Have someone else read your work out loud to you.
  • Use a thesaurus AND a dictionary.
  • Ask yourself “What am I really trying to say?”
  • Visit the Writing Center.
translate the slang to academic discourse
Translate the Slang to Academic Discourse

Slang Sentence:

Joe punched Mary’s bff, and she freaked out.

Possible Translation:

Joe struck Mary’s best friend, and she panicked because she was afraid.

translate the slang to academic discourse1
Translate the Slang to Academic Discourse

Slang Sentence:

That teacher be trippin’. She gives us tons of work b/c she thinks we got no lives.

Possible Translation:

We have an extraordinary amount of work to do in that class, and my social life is suffering because of it.

translate the slang to academic discourse2
Translate the Slang to Academic Discourse

Slang Sentence:

The roller coaster was super awesome, but I think I’m gonna puke.

Possible Translation:

I greatly enjoyed riding the roller coaster, but I may vomit because of it.

translate the slang to academic discourse3
Translate the Slang to Academic Discourse

Slang Sentence:

I can’t believe you punked me—that was seriously uncool.

Possible Translation:

I am very unhappy about the prank you played on me.

translate the slang to academic discourse4
Translate the Slang to Academic Discourse

Slang Sentence:

Idk what’s going on tonight, so let’s play it by ear.

Possible Translation:

Since I am unsure of tonight’s activities, we should wait until later to decide what we want to do.

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Don’t forget: print the handout that goes with this presentation!

For more information about slang and academic discourse or for help with other writing concerns, come to TSU’s Writing Center.

Visit room 300 in the Learning Resources Center or call 615.963.5102 to make an appointment.