Regardless of the field in which we find ourselves, we will always need a way to communicate our ideas, opinion, position on a particular issue, etc. However, not everyone has the ability to use the right words, the right pronoun and along with it, a technical language. For this, certain knowledge and mastery are necessary, but we will talk about this later.
Today we will focus on providing you with all the information you need to understand what is technical language, how to use it and what are its features. At the end of the article, you will notice that this type of scientific language can be useful for work and academic situations. All this without forgetting that we will provide you with some practical examples so that you understand this whole topic well.
Concept and definition of technical language
Technical language can be defined as the use of words, phrases and terminology that are attributed to a particular scientific or technological field. In addition, the use of this language also usually related to the academic field, since it is the first step to mastering it. That is to say, that it is a way of speaking and explaining something specific in which words that are related to a field or professional career are used.
The easiest way to identify if we are in the presence of a technical language or not, is through the words and expressions that are used. For example, if you are at a conference with physical and telecommunications engineers, it is most likely that much of the arguments presented will be based on specific theories, hypotheses, and terms. Whether referring to an effect or physical phenomenon, talk about variables and equations in a technical wayamong others.
In other words, it is a type of language in which the terminology has to be handled perfectly by the people who are receiving information in this tone. Otherwise, you will not be able to understand a single word of what is being spoken or written as the case may be.
What is the purpose of technical language?
This type of language does not have an objective as such that is applied in any field or language. Its purpose as such will depend on who is using it and for what purpose. For example, for a university academic, the use of technical language it is vital in order to demonstrate theoretical foundations.
This results in new knowledge and mastery of a subject that was previously unknown. For example, if you decide study telecommunications engineeringIt is important that you become familiar with this scientific field. The best way to achieve this is by handling and understanding the technical language and terminology used in this field.
On the other hand, to be able to carry out a degree project or thesis in order to obtain a degree, it is necessary a good command of technical language. The reason for this is due to the very structure of the thesis. According to each university, there are rules and a structure to follow, however, the way to write or edit the information is technical. This makes it not so common to hear someone use technical language. However, there are scientific fields in which it is quite common and in a certain way, “normal”.
An example of this is when you go to a doctor’s office. The way in which doctors present information to you in almost all cases is confusing and you don’t understand much. This is because a very different language is used and the average population is not prepared to handle the terminology used in medicine.
What are the characteristics of technical language?
Like its counterpart, informal language, it has a series of characteristics that help to understand and better identify this type of communication. Among the key points to mention are the following:
- There is no need for a translator much of the time to understand a word.
- It is possible to understand an idea or explanation, thanks to the metalinguistic function that technical language possesses.
- It leaves no room for doubt and uncertainty, since it is a precise and accurate type of language.
- It is a way of communicating used in very specific situations.
- A mastery and/or prior knowledge of the subject to be discussed is required to have maximum understanding.
- It’s about a conventional language and quite possibly multilanguage. This means that the terminology can be used worldwide.
- It allows to have the information with a better organization of the ideas. This is thanks to the application and use of diagrams, mathematical symbols, and other textual elements.
- It is possible to apply this language in any scientific fieldwhether in health, technology, academic, work, among others.
To give you an idea of the potential and the use that technical language has, a programming class in Spanish can be carried out in another language without any problem. This is because the scientific bases are the same, the only thing that changes is the rest of the words used to explain an idea or a foundation.
So, in general terms, we can say that technical language, despite being used throughout the world, is characterized by requiring prior study and preparation. This makes all the information neutral, with a high level of objectivity. Without neglecting the information given technically is universal. In other words, if it changes in any country, it has to change in the rest of the world, as long as it has solid foundations.
What is the importance of technical language?
As you can already guess, this type of language becomes a necessity in the workplace, professional and academic. To give you an idea, one of the greatest advantages of using technical language is that it avoids wasting time. That is, thanks to this, we can simplify the information in such a way that we do not need many bases to clarify an idea. Thanks to the fact that it is objective and universal, we can rely on bases that have already been proven to minimize the time it takes us to explain something informally.
Of course, this as long as all those involved use the same terminology, in the ideal case, it has to be this way. However, this is not always the case and sometimes it takes a little longer for the person who is not paying attention to understand our ideas. To put you in context, imagine the two situations that we will show below:
- you go to one medical consultation for a health problem.
- You are a student in the last year of your university degree.
In the first case, it is most likely that of 100% of the information that your doctor provides you, 70% will be understood. The other 30% will be key words and/or diagnoses that you will not understand if you are not very familiar with medical terminology. On the other hand, if you are studying a career focused on the health sector:
- You will understand much of the information you see on the internet related to this field.
- You will know what your specialist doctor is talking about, thanks to the fact that they use the same terminology.
In this second case, there is already knowledge and mastery of a subject or a field as such. Therefore, understanding the information you receive from any medium will be much easier for you, compared to someone who only knows the basics.
A very important aspect in terms of technical language is that it allows knowledge to be available to everyone. Despite the difficulty that exists to understand it, it is something that anyone with a certain degree of preparation can reach and use to their benefit.
Examples of technical language
At this point, it is time to know some examples regarding the use of technical language. The idea of this is that you can recognize when this way of expressing an idea is being used and when informal language is used.
What is scientific technical language?
For someone who is specialized in the scientific field, it is vital to know many physical and mathematical aspects, principles and laws. This becomes evident when you are about to understand what are the phenomena behind a research in the field of science. For example, the taxonomy behind a newly discovered animal species and what are the types of classes that family exists.
A more classic example is when uranium was first discovered as a radioactive material. After many deaths and people with overwhelming health wear, the guidelines and care that must be taken to handle this material were established. Here we are talking about specialized equipment, the waste that is generated, environmental impact, etc. All this and more leads to a series of highly technical data and information that over time has been simplified for the average user.
What is the technical language of physics?
In the physics aspect, it gets very complicated here, since there are so many variables, constants and equations for each branch of physics. For example, in the part of electricity, the electric and magnetic fields that certain materials generate when circulating an electric current are studied a lot. This implies the handling of complex and variable equations, which, without understanding it, would not understand why there is a voltage drop in a constant flow of energy in an electrical network.
If we go to something a little more complex and broad, there is the aspect of telecommunications. Here we are talking about satellite links and radio frequencies. Sending data through wired and wireless networks, either in form of pulses of light or electricity. All this entails a detailed study of mathematical equations where the behavior of a wave is studied through Fourier series and integrals, and more complex calculations.
What is technical language in design?
In this area, the terminology, in a certain way, becomes a little easier if you are fluent in English. This is due in principle to the fact that many terms used in graphic design are in English and refer to a process, a product or an action. For this reason, it is essential to handle this dialect if you want to work as a Community Manager, graphic designers or want to be part of a company that is focused on this field of work.
What is the technical language in health?
This in itself is one of the most complicated to use, since it requires many years for its correct use. One of the reasons why it maintains a very high difficulty is because there are human lives at stake. Therefore, a bad term used can mean a bad diagnosis and, therefore, end the life of a person in the worst case. Although it’s not a reason to explain why doctors often use complex terminology with their patients, it is necessary for them to do so, as it is their job and the way they provide information.