Language and Linguistics

Types of language

Types of language with characteristics

Types of language?

Language is only part of the communication.It has many types which covers the whole is more than one type of language or method of communication through which we transmit information. In this sense, we can classify different types. One of them is based on the level of naturalness or artificiality with which the symbol code used is used.

1. Natural language

Natural language is the language that we all speak ordinarily (Spanish, Catalan, English, French, etc.) and refers to those languages ​​that have been developed spontaneously by a group of people with the purpose of communicating. It is different from other types of languages, such as: programming languages ​​or mathematical language.

Thus, or natural language we understand all that type of communication act that unconsciously uses the code learned and assimilated during childhood and the development process, typical of the environment and culture of belonging.

2. Artificial language

It is understood as such all language created and used consciously with the objective of fulfilling a specific objective, expressing itself in a different way from the natural one or in order to specify technical aspects that can be ambivalent and difficult to understand through natural language.

Artificial language is not born spontaneously, but is created and does not respond to the purpose of general purpose communication. The programming language is a clear example , as it is a language to communicate with computers and between devices that compute. Therefore, it can be said that it is a type of ad hoc language , in whose origins there has been a clear specific objective, linked to a specific context.

Within the artificial language, formal language, literary and poetic language stand out as a form of emotional and artistic expression and technical language (within which we can find specific languages ​​of different disciplines such as legal or medical language). Next we will see its characteristics.

3.Literary language

The type of written language that writers use. It may seem the same as cult language, however, colloquial and even vulgar twists can be introduced. It is a type of language that creates beauty and complex literary plots, as well as communication. In it, the forms matter a lot, and the attempts of expression do not only focus on the explicit content of the messages . For example, the fact of making a fictional character speak with a certain accent serves to build his role in history, since he can report on his ethnic or social origins.

4.Scientific and technical language

The scientific and technical language is made up of jargon, that is, they are languages ​​that use different social groups and professional associations and that vary with respect to the standard language. In addition, they are normative and objective. Language is technical in the sense that it is used in different activities, professions, or plots of science. This is because it is necessary to be clear in advance about the precise meaning of the words and the ways of formulating the messages so as not to fall into procedural errors derived from a misunderstanding of what has been communicated.

The scientific language is similar to the previous one. However, the main difference between the two is in its purpose. While the scientific language refers to the transmission of knowledge, the technical language aims to transmit information not with a theoretical purpose, but with an immediate and specific practical purpose.

5.Formal language

Formal language is less personal than informal language, and is used for professional or academic purposes. This type of language does not use colloquialisms, contractions or pronouns like “you” or “you.” Instead, use “your,” “you,” or “you.”

In a way, the main reason for the formal language is to give the communicative context an importance or solemnity that serves to make that place or act something that is respected, which is above the individual people who are communicating.

According to the communicative element used

Language can also be classified according to what type of elements are used in communicative exchange.

1. Verbal language

Verbal language is characterized by the use of words when interacting with another person (or persons) , either through written or spoken language. Now, not only does it refer solely to the use of words, but also to shouts, acronyms, hieroglyphs, etc.

On the other hand, this is a type of language that starts from the establishment of norms and symbols whose interpretation has been agreed beforehand (although there is a certain space to dissent). Therefore, it takes time to learn how to use it.


Oral language is basically spoken language. This type of language is a combination of sounds used to express thinking, in which sounds are grouped into spoken words. A spoken word can be a single sound or a group of sounds . To express something these words must be grouped correctly following a series of rules.

In addition, this is one of the first types of verbal language that appeared in our evolutionary history, probably next to the iconic language, or shortly thereafter.


Oral language sounds are represented by letters to form written language. In other words, oral language has equivalent words in written language. These words are reflected on paper or on a computer , and express ideas, and just as happens in oral language, these words must be grouped appropriately for the correct expression.


It is another type of nonverbal language that uses basic symbols and defines ways to combine them. The basic symbols are vocabulary, and how to combine grammar.

2. Nonverbal language

This type of language is carried out without words and, in many cases, the person who performs it is not aware. The look, the way of sitting, walking, gestures, body movements, are some examples of  nonverbal communication .


It is a type of nonverbal language that is expressed through the body . Gestures, facial expression, body movements and even body odors are kinesic language.


It is a non-verbal language that appears specifically in the way in which the muscles of the face move, an area to which we are very sensitive, since there are areas of our brain dedicated to detecting facial expressions and giving them meaning.

Other categories

Other categories can also be considered to classify types of language that do not fit the above criteria.

Vernacular language

Vernacular language refers to the native language of the place in which it is spoken. For example. French in France or Spanish in Spain. However, Spanish in Colombia or Peru are not vernacular languages.

Egocentric language

Self-centered language is a type of language that is observed in children and that is an integral part of their development . Originally it was Jean Piaget who gave name to this type of language, and this famous character affirmed that it happens because the child is not a very social being at an early age and speaks only for himself.

According to Piaget, over time, the child is related to his environment and this type of speech disappears. Instead, for Vygotsky, over time this type of speech evolves and helps children organize and regulate their thinking.

Social language

Another term that Piaget coined to refer to the linguistic behavior of children . The social language is characterized because the fate of information and communication goes outward, in an adaptive way and to relate to the environment. The child adapts the dialogue to the interlocutor.


Related Articles

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Check Also
Back to top button