Volume 10 No 2 Spring 2014
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Around the World: ESL in the News


Brazilian Teens Video Chat with Elderly Americans

Thanks to FCB Brasil and the CNA language school network, Brazilian teens are able to practice their English skills through a speaking exchange - with senior citizens living in Chicago retirement homes. Participants have formed real relationships talking about everything from their families to big dreams. Click the image above to view a video of teens and seniors chatting.


English Tutors in China
Well-paid, but often not qualified

Some families in China spend small fortunes on foreign English teachers for their children, but sometimes parents mistakenly think any foreigner -- no matter what their level of English-language skills -- can provide quality education in English. Education experts say this has led to cases of unqualified, unmotivated and sometimes even non-English-speaking foreigners tutoring Chinese kids. Said one tutor: "My English is not very good, so it is a little difficult for me to teach, but I need money."
Read article



Angst In Germany Over Invasion Of American English

Germans have borrowed more than 10,000 American words since 1990. Language experts here say English is the main foreign language that has influenced German over the past six decades. This cultural infusion is pervasive, with English used by journalists, by scientists and even at the highest levels of government.

"Languages do tend to affect one another, but the influence of English in Germany is so strong that Germans are having a hard time advancing their own vocabulary," he says.
Read article



Students in Turkey have Poor English Skills even after Years of Study.


More than 90 percent of Turkish students cannot progress beyond basic language skills even after 1,000 hours of English training, according to a recent report.

Plagued by poorly trained teachers, inadequate materials and methods, and non-engaged students, English learning in Turkey is suffering. Student TOEFL scores are not competitive and the report found that over 95 percent of Turkish students in state schools cannot respond to spoken questions in English, despite having at least 920 hours of classes over the course of seven years to 10th grade.
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Announcement of Transition to English in Moroccan Universities Goes Viral

Moroccans expressed mixed reactions to the announcement made by the Minister of Higher Education to transition to English, rather than French, as the main foreign language in Moroccan universities. The minister said the language change would push the Moroccan education system forward and keep Morocco more in line with the rest of the world. One of the main components behind Minister Daoudi’s declaration is the fact that English is the language used around the world to produce scientific research.

The transition will push Moroccan university students to become fluent in English as a condition for obtaining a doctorate in engineering and medical programs.

Some Moroccans feel the idea is advantageous and the time is well past due to for Moroccan universities to make the switch. "If Moroccans don’t open their eyes to the rest of the world and try to liberate themselves from this complex called ‘la France et les Français’ our progress will suffer immensely,” commented one supporter of the change.

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New Egyptian President Taught by Former NC State ESL Program Coordinator

As an ESL teacher, you just never know whose lives you may touch or who your students may become.

Former NC State ESL Program Coordinator Kristen Danek taught the new president of Egypt, AbdelFattah Elsisi, nine years ago at the Defense Language Institute English Language Center in San Antonio, Texas. This course was in preparation for a year of study at the US Army War College.

Says Kristen: "The man who was my student at DLI in 2005 was intelligent, kind, respectful, and humble. May you lead your country through these tumultuous times with vision, integrity, and strength of character."




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