Fewer Students Taking Foreign Language Exams

Western Mail (Cardiff, Wales), June 30, 2016 | Go to article overview

Fewer Students Taking Foreign Language Exams


Byline: Gareth Evans Education Editor Gareth.Evans@walesonline.co.uk

SCHOOLS in Wales are struggling to boost take-up of foreign languages at GCSE level, a major new survey has found.

A report published today by the British Council and Education Development Trust highlights the decline in the number of pupils choosing to study foreign languages in Wales.

The second national survey of modern foreign language (MFL) teaching in Welsh schools found that the number of pupils in Wales studying a foreign language to GCSE declined by 44% between 2002 and 2015.

It said French and German, traditionally the most widely-taught foreign languages in Welsh schools, had seen the steepest declines.

Entries for French are now less than half (47%) of what they were in 2002 and German entries are only about a third (36%) of those recorded in 2002.

The report said the introduction of the Welsh Baccalaureate had led to fewer timetable options for pupils to study MFL.

It said studying a language was viewed as difficult by pupils, who have usually had little time to build their confidence in MFL, with many only learning a foreign language in years seven and eight for less than the recommended minimum of two hours per week.

Language Trends Wales 2016 surveyed primary schools in addition to secondaries for the first time, in response to the Welsh Government's ambition for MFL to be taught from Year Five in primary schools to develop Wales as a "bilingual plus one" nation (Welsh and English, supplemented by a third or fourth language).

It found that most primary schools support the idea of teaching MFL at primary level, but have concerns about how it could be achieved without extra funding and training. Secondary schools were praised for the work they are doing to interest their pupils in MFL and increase take-up at GCSE level.

But the report warned that schools working in more disadvantaged circumstances are less likely to have been involved in efforts to promote MFL to their pupils, who often do not appreciate the value of studying a foreign language.

Director of British Council Wales, Jenny Scott, said: "The report found the Welsh Government's Global Futures initiative is improving attitudes to MFL learning.

"It's too early to judge whether there will eventually be a positive effect on MFL take-up at GCSE and A-level, but we are concerned at the lack of interest in schools working in more disadvantaged circumstances.

"We know that international opportunities, whether work, volunteering or studying at further or higher education level, improve future job prospects.

"An international experience can be particularly life changing for young people who have not grown up with the advantages enjoyed by many of their contemporaries. …

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA 8, MLA 7, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Note: primary sources have slightly different requirements for citation. Please see these guidelines for more information.

Cited article

Fewer Students Taking Foreign Language Exams
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Help
Full screen
Items saved from this article
  • Highlights & Notes
  • Citations
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

matching results for page

    Questia reader help

    How to highlight and cite specific passages

    1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
    2. Click or tap the last word you want to select, and you’ll see everything in between get selected.
    3. You’ll then get a menu of options like creating a highlight or a citation from that passage of text.

    OK, got it!

    Cited passage

    Style
    Citations are available only to our active members.
    Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA 8, MLA 7, APA and Chicago citation styles.

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

    1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

    Cited passage

    Thanks for trying Questia!

    Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

    Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

    Buy instant access to save your work.

    Already a member? Log in now.

    Search by... Author
    Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

    Oops!

    An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.