People use different ways to communicate with other people, depending on the situation in a health and social care setting. Informal is mostly used between people who know each other very well and formal for individuals who do not know others to well or have not met before. People who are expected to talk in a formal language in a health and social care setting are the care workers. Care workers should ensure they know the difference between the two different conversational languages and use the correct one accordingly. For this essay I will be analysing the two different ways to communicate to people and give examples to why people use these ways to communicate. Formal conversations are mostly used between two individuals who are of a profession or who have not met before. Formal language doesn’t use contractions for example, He is going out now. NOT he’s going out now. Vocabulary is also different, please refrain from smoking (formal) please don’t smoke (informal).
According to stretch and whitehouse (2010, p6) ‘formal communication is understood by a wide range of people.’ This means that people from different backgrounds/ ages can understand the concepts of formal language. Informal language is less strict on grammar and often uses shorter sentences. Informal language also uses slang instead of using the correct words for things. This type of language is normally spoken and not written. It is ok to talk to friends in an informal manner but you wouldn’t talk to your patients about their medical guidelines in this language you would talk to them in a formal way. In a health and social care setting informal language could be used when you’re giving a patient an update if you’re just walking down the hall way.
People need to know when it is acceptable to use either formal or informal language in a health and social care setting. If an individual doesn’t know when they are supposed to be using formal language then they can make themselves look unprofessional and that they don’t know how to speak in a formal manner. Also if they use informal instead of formal then it’s harder for people to communicate back in the group. In summary, informal and formal communication are quite different to each other. If an individual was to use the wrong form of language in a health and social care setting then they can make that person feel disrespected, whereas if they were to use the correct form then they can communicate more effectively.
STRECH, B. & WHITEHOUSE, N. (eds) Health and Social Care Level 3 Book1, Pearson, Harlow Essex