New report presents language learning issues facing the UK

The Guardian has published an article discussing the ‘seven big language learning issues facing the UK’, highlighted in the recent ‘Living Languages’ report. The report presents some of the key areas of debate that have resulted from the two-year ‘Case for Language Learning’ project, undertaken by the Guardian and the British Academy, which aimed to explore the reasons for the UK’s shortage of foreign language skills.

To read the article, which includes a link to the Living Languages report, visit the Guardian website.

Students do better with overseas placements

According to a new report published by the UK Higher Education International Unit, a far greater proportion of students who spend part of their degree programme overseas achieve a first or 2:1 in their degree compared to those who remain in the uK throughout their course.

To read more, see the full article from the Times Higher Education website.

Report on current climate for language teaching

The BBC has reported on findings from a report by the CfBT Education Trust and the British Council, which highlights the current “difficult climate” in England’s schools for language teaching. In particular, the report notes the low uptake of language GCSEs and A-levels as areas for concern. In terms of more positive developments, the report also found continued growth in language teaching in primary schools, with around half of primary schools now allowing pupils to study languages at Key Stage 1.

To read the article in full, visit the BBC website. The full report can be downloaded from the CfBT website.

Report suggests need for recovery programme for modern languages

The BBC has published an article discussing a recent report by the All-Party Parliamentary Group (APPG), which states that all political parties should pledge to improve the teaching and learning of modern languages in the UK, and that a “national recovery programme” is needed to improve language skills. The APPG bases its findings on evidence that the UK economy is losing £50 billion a year due to poor language skills.

To read the article in full, visit the BBC website.

Why UK students are missing out on the benefits of outward mobility

The UK Higher Education International Unit (IU) has published an article discussing the latest report by the European Commission’s education analysis network, which suggests that UK students are failing to take advantage of opportunities to study abroad.

British Council report on UK language needs

On 20 November the British Council launched a report entitled ‘Languages for the Future: Which Languages the UK Needs and Why’, identifying Spanish, Arabic, French, Mandarin Chinese, German, Portuguese, Italian, Russian, Turkish and Japanese as the languages most vital to the UK over the next 20 years. The report is of interest for all concerned with planning the future of languages and can be downloaded from the British Council website.