Slang: Use It or Not?

English with a Smile

Some of my students complain that American slang is incomprehensible to them and they are glad to learn British English, because “it’s easier to understand.” But other students have discovered that they were unable to understand anyone in London because they talked “slang.”

Now the question is whether the problems were really caused by slang. Or were there other problems? Native speakers, speakers who have been born in an English-speaking country, can speak in an accent, they can speak dialect, they may use expressions, and yes, they may use occasional (= used sometimes) slang words or expressions.

In my humble opinion, problems of incomprehensibility are mostly caused by accent and the fact that natives speak fast. I’ve written some exercises about these things, and there will be more in the future.

Should You Learn to Talk Slang?

No, I don’t think you should. If you get used to speaking slang…

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