By: van Orsouw 23-11-2012
AMSTERDAM – The working population still has not mastered basic communication English. The Netherlands, Belgium, Norway and Sweden are exceptions to this rule.
This was made clear by the English Proficiency Index for Companies 2012, a research performed by education organisation Education First, according to EurActiv.
This research was performed under 115,000 employees and 1.7 million adults in 24 countries. The interviewed labour force is employed by companies which turn over from one million dollars up to 100 billion dollars annually. In the Czech Republic, Japan and Russia, the working population is even worse at conversation English than the general public.
In the countries that score well, English is taught as early as primary school. Moreover, a good command of the English language is often a requirement in job vacancies. The fact that television programmes and films are not subtitled is also a reason. The level of command of the English language is not adequate in practically each sector. Employees working in travel and tourism score highest, closely followed by consultants, but even they speak English at a basic level. A possible reason for the poor command of English could be that people who work full time usually don’t have time to invest in a language course. In addition, individuals feel more and more at ease in their positions, causing the improvement of their English conversational skills to be pushed to the background