Wednesday, November 23, 2011

400 Million+ Chinese Have Studied ENGLISH -

In a recent "China Daily" paper, it states that during the last 30 years over 400 million Chinese have studied ENGLISH. That's more Chinese studying English than Americans who live in the U.S. (population 310 million)!

And how many Americans are studying Chinese? Actually, not many. In the past decade, thousands of Americans schools have stopped teaching any foreign languages according to the NY Times article:

Here are some highlight from the article. It states: "Americans have never been particularly interested in learning other languages and are even less interested today (with the exception of conversational Spanish).

Only 9 percent of Americans, compared with 44 percent of Europeans, speak a foreign language. The Web has only reinforced the smug American conviction that everyone worth talking to in the world speaks English."

So how does America compete in a GLOBAL ECONOMY when we don't learn other languages and know too little about other cultures?

It goes on to point out: "Richard D. Brecht, executive director of the Center for Advanced Study of Langauge at the University of Maryland, told me in 2003 that “America has no long-term strategy to build the expertise we need to understand other cultures. We’ve seen, in the worst possible way because of our lack of Arabists, where this short-term thinking leads.”

Their conclusion: "we don’t have enough diplomats, spies and business people who know other languages — is rooted in the much larger dumbing down of the American concept of what it means to be an educated person. Most states have dropped foreign language requirements for high school graduation, and most students complete college without studying any foreign language. We’re a Know-As-Little-As-You Can-Get-Away-With Nation and proud of it."

How to we win the future like that?

No comments:

Post a Comment

Comments from real people welcome. The only comment rule is "BE CIVIL." Let's discuss SOLUTIONS based on real FACTS.

Thanks for your feedback! Click "Subscribe" or "Follow" for notification of future posts. Feel free to Share with your friends.