academic English course
Language is used differently in different settings. The way you speak at home with family is different than the way you speak in a university classroom. How you write a text message to a friend is different than the way you write a sentence for an essay.

These differences are sometimes referred to as code-switching.Code-switching allows you use language in different ways for different situations. For example,academic English serves a different purpose than the English you use when you socialize.

Keep reading to learn more about the differences between social and academic English.

Same Language, Different Rules

Social English and English for university studies are the same language, but they have different rules. Here is how social English and academic English compare:

  • Social English: Used for conversations with friends and family. When you speak to people you know well,you may use slang, abbreviations, or unconventional grammar.
  • Academic English: Used for formal and professional purposes with more complex vocabulary. When you speak or write in this way, you should use standard grammar.
English for university

When you study with friends you will switch between these two types of English

Even though these two types of English are different, both are important. Some teachers even think that proficiency in social English can help you to learn academic English.

The Difference Between Social and Academic Vocabulary

Whether you are in the classroom or going out to meet friends, you will learn new words all the time in an academic English course.

However, the words you learn in each setting will be very different. In a social setting, you will usually learn words you use in everyday life, such as the words for household goods. You will also learn slang and idioms.

In an academic setting, the words you learn will be more complex and unusual, and will often relate to the subject you are studying. For instance, in a science class you will probably learn a number of scientific terms and definitions.

Academic Writing Versus Social Conversations

Another thing you will notice about the differences between academic language and social languageis the difference between writing and speaking. For example, the words you use to connect ideas will be different.

  • Academic writing: You use words like thus, therefore, furthermore, and subsequently.
  • Conversational speaking: You might use words and phrases like so, but also, and so then… instead.
English for university studies

Learning different types of English means learning different ways to express yourself

Also, in academic writing things like homophones, apostrophes, and punctuation need to be used correctly. In social conversations, you should aim to use these correctly, but it is less important to get things exactly right. The people you are speaking to will usually be able to figure out what you mean from the context of the situation.

As you work on the different types of English, you will see that the key to learning academic English is the same as picking up social English: keep practicing and have fun!

Do you want to learn English for university studies?

Contact ASC English for more details!