The World: Who Speaks English?

This week’s Economist had an interesting article about “Speaking English”. Lots of interesting facts and demographics about which countries speak English well and which don’t.

Our feeling is that students in whatever country need the opportunity to get comprehensible input and at the same time practice comprehensible output. The output / input idea – at the right level. This will always increase fluency and EnglishCentral does have it in spades.

Some interesting tidbits from the article.

Wealthy countries do better overall. But smaller wealthy countries do better still: the larger the number of speakers of a country’s main language, the worse that country tends to be at English.

Export dependency is another correlate with English. Countries that export more are better at English (though it’s not clear which factor causes which).

Teaching plays a role, too. Starting young, while it seems a good idea, may not pay off: children between eight and 12 learn foreign languages faster than younger ones, so each class hour on English is better spent on a 10-year-old than on a six-year-old.

Finally, one surprising result is that China and India are next to each other (29th and 30th of 44) in the rankings, despite India’s reputation as more Anglophone.

Lots to digest and think about …. get the full article here.


  1. […] 年齢と言語学習に関する問題は、言語学研究において重要な部分を占めます。基本的に、この議論は Critical Period Hypothesis (CPH、臨界期仮説) と呼ばれる仮説に焦点を当てています。CPH は、Eric Lenneberg が 1967 年に出版した「Biological Foundations of Language」という本で最初に紹介されました。CPH は、第二言語の習得を試みた人であれば一度は頭をよぎったことがある「一定の年齢を超えると、ネイティブスピーカーのように言語を修得することは不可能である」という仮説を説明しようと試みました。 […]


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: