Swiss 'could do better' regarding English skills

Only average in English despite efforts to push English at an early age Keystone

A worldwide survey on English language proficiency ranks Switzerland in 16th position, virtually unchanged over the past five years. Researchers found marked regional differences within the multilingual country.

This content was published on November 5, 2013 - 16:15
swissinfo.ch and agencies

The English Proficiency Index is based on tests with 750,000 adult volunteers in 60 countries conducted last year over the internet by the private education company Education First.

The poll shows that participants in the majority German-speaking part of Switzerland and urban regions in general were above the European average.

However, similar to a previous survey, French- as well as Italian-speakers in Switzerland were slightly below average.

Sweden leads the table ahead of other Scandinavian and Baltic countries. Germany is 0.7 points clear of Switzerland, while France and Italy rank 7.1 and 6.6 points respectively behind the Swiss.

The Lucerne-based education company notes that people in Turkey, Kazakhstan, Hungary and Poland have made most progress over the past year.

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