Alma Mater
ISSN 1026-955X
Vestnik Vysshey Shkoly (Higher School Herald)
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Youth slang in students’ speech: Role in communication, scale of distribution, causes and peculiarities of usage

S.L. Talanov
80,00 ₽

UDC 316.6:81`27-052

DOI 10.20339/AM.10-23.106  


Sergei L. Talanov, PhD Social science, Docent, Associate Professor in Department of Political and Social Science at Yaroslavl State Pedagogical University; Head of the Yaroslavl regional office Russian Society of Sociologists, e-mail:


The article analyzes the reasons, peculiarities of usage, role in communication, and the extent of spread of youth slang among students. In 2023, the author conducted a survey and testing of students and graduate students from universities in the Central Federal District in order to study their knowledge of everyday and student slang, as well as their knowledge of Russian language spelling and punctuation. It was found that slang is one of the important elements (attributes) of a student's social status, as it demonstrates belonging to a specific group and indicates the position a person occupies in the university hierarchy. Slang allows to describe everyday reality in the most concise, accessible, emotional and comprehensive way, while expressing one's attitude towards it (event, action, etc.). Additionally, it has been established that girls (who know slang) have a similar level of slang proficiency as boys, but unlike boys, they tend to use it less in everyday practice. It has been revealed that girls avoid using non-academic slang when communicating with boys, although they are perfectly capable of using it. Instead, they prefer actively using slang related to the educational process, rather than describing reality beyond its limits. It has been found that one of the main reasons for the rapid appearance of new words in youth slang is the swift adoption of borrowings from English, French, and other foreign languages, as well as active borrowing of words after watching foreign movies and listening to foreign music. Out-of-town students possess a different range of slang and jargon than those who study in universities in their own city. As a result, an exchange of slang and jargon takes place. Students, regardless of their field of study, mostly use slang related to the educational process, rather than everyday life. Girls, more than boys, use slang terms that express qualities of a person. Students and undergraduates of different nationalities use different slang words and jargon. It was revealed that students from different regions of Russia are familiar with different slang expressions, which creates certain difficulties and complicates interpersonal communication during their adaptation on the first year of studies. It has been established that the majority of girls, unlike boys, prefer to use jargon and slang with positive or neutral connotations rather than negative ones. The research shows that students who frequently use slang and jargon in their everyday activities (outside of studying) have lower academic performance compared to those who use slang less. In conclusion, the author suggests implementing measures aimed at studying the Russian language and literature among students.

Keywords and phrases: slang, jargon, youth culture, university hierarchy, status.




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