Thailand falls further behind in English language skills

Thailand falls further behind in English language skills

By The Nation


EF Education First has released its annual global ranking of English proficiency, placing Thailand in 64th position globally, a drop from last year’s 53rd place, and 16th out of 21 in Asia.


For the fourth time in eight years, Sweden tops the EF English Proficiency Index (EF EPI), bumping last year’s top-scorer, the Netherlands, to second place.


EF is an international education company that specialises in language training, educational travel, academic degree programs, and cultural exchange. The rankings draw on data from 1.3 million non-native English speakers in 88 countries and regions.


“Thailand dropped 11 slots in one year in our global ranking of English proficiency,” said Dr Minh N Tran, EF’s senior director of research. 


“Our EF EPI research shows that countries and individuals that invest in English education and that recognise the importance of the language as a lever for competitiveness improve their proficiency year after year. Published by EF, this ranking has become the de facto reference point for governments, companies, and educators when they discuss English skills,” she added.


Key findings of this year’s EF EPI include:


Europe remains the global leader in English proficiency. Eight of the top 10 spots in the ranking are held by European countries.


For the first time ever, an Asian nation enters the top three slots, with Singapore ranking third. However, Asia continues to possess a large regional divide between the highest (3rd rank for Singapore) and lowest proficiency countries (86th rank for Uzbekistan).


Africa shows stronger gains in English proficiency than any other region, with Algeria, Egypt, and South Africa improving by two or more points.


Latin America is the only region to show a slight overall decline in English proficiency. Scores in the region remain more uniform than anywhere else, with only a small gap between the lowest and highest proficiency countries. 


Women continue to outpace men in English skills worldwide, and this gender gap has been widening since 2016. 


New correlations indicate that societies with higher English proficiency are more egalitarian. Among other metrics, these countries enrol more girls in preschool and report a greater proportion of women with bank accounts.



-- © Copyright The Nation 2018-11-9
latest news from Thailand

Unlike Elected PMs, Prayuth To Retain Full Power Until VoteBy Teeranai Charuvastra, Staff Reporter Junta chairman Prayuth Chan-ocha speaks to reporters Jan. 22, 2019. BANGKOK — The government on Thursday rejected calls for junta chairman Prayuth Chan-ocha to step down in the weeks leading up to...


Election Commission Lays Down Timeline For 2019 PollBy Teeranai Charuvastra, Staff Reporter Voters check their registrations in June 2011. BANGKOK — Thailand is set to vote March 24 on its future government, but the results may not be finalized until early May, according to a timeline laid down by...


Video: "Sleepy" Thai driver puts the car in cruise control as he takes a nap Picture: Daily News Thai social media went into meltdown when a video showed a car being driven by a man who had put the driver's seat right back. He was said to be sleeping while the car was going along. The clip showed...


Thai Law: Foreigners And The Medical Marijuana Law, ExplainedBy Wirot Poonsuwan, Attorney-at-Law Gary Coughlan stands between two police officers Jan. 16 on Koh Samui after police accused him of cooking tom yum goong with cannabis. Marijuana was legalized in Thailand in the closing days of 2018...