Slang has always been a part of the English language and although we use slang to communicate with friends, it is not always appropriate to write in that manner. Online and text messaging conversations have incorporated an enormous amount of new slang terms into our vocabulary. Frequently, I have found that many students try to incorporate that into their writing for school assignments. Under some circumstances, slang in classroom writing assignments may be acceptable, but most of the time, students should not use slang in their writing.
How do you know whether or not a word is a slang term? Look it up in the dictionary. If the word is in the dictionary and it does not say that the word is slang, then it is acceptable to use it in your assignments. Abbreviated text message writing should not be used during writing assignments. “Wat r u doing 2nite?” is not an acceptable form of writing in the classroom.
Another reason not to use slang vocabulary is that slang words often have double meanings. If you use slang in your writing, the chances are higher that the reader will lose the meaning of what you are trying to say. When I was in school, many students used the phrase, “my bad,” to indicate that they made a mistake or did something wrong. However, when used in writing, the reader may not be able to decipher the meaning of your sentence, especially if they are unfamiliar with the slang definition of the word.
Eliminating slang from your writing and using appropriate dictionary vocabulary will help to improve your scholarly writing.