Jun 13, 2019 | 0 comments

Jun 13, 2019 | Miscellaneous | 0 comments


Ideologies over time in the use of English

During the early years, English seemed like a language that was only necessary for terms of ensuring and giving the ability to simply communicate with others. There was little application of formality and since the language was spoken from early years, it seemed unnecessary to master intricacies such as the use of verbs and nouns that structure the language. Lombardi (2008) and Smiljanic and Bradlaw (2008) state that, for native speakers, the difficulty is in understanding that there is a formal style to any language which they have to learn and master through education and training, despite speaking and making use of the language for many years.

Different styles over time

I am an Arabic speaker, therefore unlike many of my classmates, I was born with and have interacted with the Arabic language for most of my life. In the early years of my life, my attitude towards the use of language would definitely be considered informal. Informal attitudes are where the Arabic language is applied spontaneously without any second thought to how the words are put together. The use of dialect and structure are not put into serious consideration. According to Kwa (2011), majority of the English speakers make use of the language informally without a second thought. I have found that my early interaction with the English language made heavy use of verbs and passive sentence construction. However, in later years, due mainly to the influence of education and the demands placed by assignments and papers where the structure is vital. There are requirements to putting much more thought into the use of English. In effect, as I have grown older English mastery has become quite similar to the mastery of other foreign languages. Vocabulary and use of various forms of the structure have become not only vital but indeed quite necessary if the use of the language is to be as effective as is expected of a native speaker.

Use of the different styles

It is important to note that whereas, I may lean more to the formal English language style, there are several cases where I have applied various other forms of the language, which is mostly dependent on when and to whom am applying the language. While with my age mates, classmates, and friends, formal English seems more pretentious and boisterous than I would prefer. Because of this being drawn into the colloquial language style, where my sentences become much shorter and I make use of clipped words. This allows faster communication and quicker completion of information. According to Rissanen et al. (2011), colloquial language style is one which allows us to seem quite intimate with the person to whom we are speaking to. On the other hand, presenting a paper, or attending an interview requires a more formal presentation of the same language. One is not easily forgiven for turning to less formal styles of English. Similarly, commonly with family, I may revolve more around my native speech thus the more informal state of the language. These are dialects that come naturally due to the nature of how I mastered, learned, and interacted with the language in the early formative years of my life. Whereas many individuals turn to slang in their native language, I tend to refer more to the informal use of the language. Slang is not only difficult to master, it often completely moves out of the true foundations of English and its vocabularies.

Use of English by others

Many times, I do not take issue with how the English language is spoken by others. However, due to the first interaction with the language, I find it difficult to understand the use of slang. Typically slang sounds like a completely new language which should be not be found within the confines of the English language. However, as shown by Hsu (2017), despite my native speech I often appreciate the difficulties that other non-English speaking individuals face when encountering the English language and learning its structures. While I have been an English speaker for all of my life, I am still learning the intricacies of the structure and vocabularies of the language. Yet, there are many more who have not interacted with English until it was formerly taught. For them, change in style and use of the language may be quite difficult. They may not be able to master the different forms of the language which in turn means that they are stuck with one form of the language. Mastering both formal and slang for example seems like an uphill task for them. I, therefore, find that often I make excuses for their shortcomings and attempt to understand their background before unnecessarily and continuously correcting them for how they make use of the language. It is important to note however that where native speakers are concerned, there is little patience to be had for the misuse of the language. For them, there is a higher demand for linguistic correctness and social correctness in the use and application of the language.


Hsu, T. C. (2017). Learning English with augmented reality: Do learning styles matter?. Computers & Education106, 137-149.

Kwa, C. (2011). Styles of Knowing: A new history of science from ancient times to the present. The University of Pittsburgh Pre.

Lombardi, J. (2008). Beyond learning styles: Brain-based research and English language learners. The Clearing House: A Journal of Educational Strategies, Issues, and Ideas81(5), 219-222.

Rissanen, M., Kytö, M., & Heikkonen, K. (Eds.). (2011). English in transition: Corpus-based studies in linguistic variation and genre styles (Vol. 23). Walter de Gruyter.

Smiljanic, R., & Bradlow, A. R. (2008). Stability of temporal contrasts across speaking styles in English and Croatian. Journal of Phonetics36(1), 91-113.