English proficiency in Brazil worsens



SAO PAULO – An international study indicates that the English-language proficiency of Brazilians has worsened, going from low to very low. That’s worrisome news given that English will be the lingua franca during the World Cup this country will host in 2014 and the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro.

Brazil ranks 46th among the 54 countries in the study prepared by global language training company EF Education First, based in Zurich, Switzerland. The data is collected from the company’s own online or placement tests, many of them given to people seeking to improve their English.

Economics professor Samy Dana of Brazil’s Getulio Vargas Foundation says, “The poor English-language proficiency of Brazilians shows that this country is not fully prepared to host major events like the World Cup or the Olympic Games.”

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  • sagbotgamot

    Next Headline: Urgent! 5,000 Filipino English Teachers wanted in Brazil.

    • 12JEM

       To qualify you have to be proficient in Portuguese, as well.

  • Flavio

    Good for the Philippines. Another potential rival for call centre KO’d. Recently , HP transferred all its call centre from Costa Rica to the Philippines…

  • Iggy Ramirez

    English proficiency tests such as TOEFL have very expensive fees and have very steep requirements in order to pass.

    Since Brazil is not aiming to be the next big thing in call center services, it does not need to have that level of proficiency. If the only purpose of achieving a certain level of proficiency is to equip people with the ability to answer simple questions and give directions, such as “Where is the hotel?”, “Do you know this place?”, or “Is this Rio?”, then gaining a higher level of English proficiency is unnecessarily, well, unnecessary.

    People will help those in need regardless of the circumstances of their ability in English. Inadequate proficiency in a certain language does not necessarily make anyone less helpful.

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