How many different words are there for teenagers?

by Kathy Watts, Access Services Librarian

Whitworth library stepsMost college students aren’t teenagers anymore, but there are still many words to describe them:

  •  teen(s)
  • teenager(s)
  • adolescent
  • adolescence
  • juvenile

For many students, conducting research will be a necessary part of each semester. When students search for information on a topic, what words they choose to search make a big difference in how successful their search will be. Would they get better results using “teens” or “adolescents”? For students who are new to a discipline, it can be difficult to guess the appropriate “lingo.”

The good news for students is that the library has many resources that can help!

First and foremost, librarians are available to assist with research questions, searching databases, and finding suitable information sources. Students can check the library’s web page to see what hours librarians are available (

Secondly, Whitworth Library has an excellent reference collection of books: dictionaries, encyclopedias, and indices on many subjects. Each one of these books provides introductions to and overviews of a wide range of topics, and will include terminology specific to that topic. Students can use the terminology found in the reference book to guide their research.

Starting research can be intimidating, and maybe overwhelming, for new students. Please encourage your son or daughter to take advantage of the services provided by Whitworth Library!


This entry was posted in Parenting College Students, Parents and Families, Staying Connected. Bookmark the permalink.

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