as an interjection, 'um' is a filler word used in speech. It indicates hesitation, doubt, or a pause in searching for the right word or phrase. It's often used unconsciously when someone is thinking or trying to decide what to say next.
'um' doesn't have a specific grammatical function like nouns, verbs, or adjectives. Instead, it's an exclamation, often used to fill pauses. It can be used when someone is unsure, thinking, or hesitating. While 'um' is common in spoken language, it's typically avoided in formal written communication.
Um, I'm not sure how to answer that question.
I think I'd like the salad and, um, the chicken for my main course.
She's from, um, Ohio, I believe.
Overusing 'um' can make a speaker seem unsure or unprepared. It's a good idea to be aware of its usage, especially in formal or public speaking situations.
In some cultures or settings, frequent use of 'um' might be perceived as a lack of confidence or knowledge on the subject. In written dialogue (like in novels or scripts), 'um' can be used to convey a character's hesitation or uncertainty.