samedi 15 mars 2008

Cambridge devient monolingue

Faire la fête à Cambridge, mais en anglais seulement.
Pour les langues indigènes, on recrute des traducteurs.


Ce matin, dans les colonnes du Guardian, la journaliste Debbie Andalo nous dévoile que la prestigieuse université de Cambridge a décidé de ne plus retenir comme critère d'admission la connaissance par le bachelier d'une langue étrangère. Les autorités académiques ont été contraintes à ce renoncement pour tenir compte que 83 % des écoles publiques au Royaume-Uni n'imposent plus l'apprentissage d'une langue étrangère aux enfants de plus de 14 ans. Dans l'ensemble du pays, seulement 50 % des lycéens sont capables de lire un texte en une autre langue que l'anglais. Les conséquences de cet abandon sont parfois inattendues. Voici quelques jours, un jeune homme parti faire le tour du monde à pied a renoncé à son aventure à peine débarqué à Calais. Il s'est rendu compte que les autres habitants de la planète de parlaient pas anglais !

Cambridge drops foreign language requirement

The University of Cambridge is proposing to drop the requirement for a foreign language GCSE as part of its admissions criteria to attract more children from state schools.
Cambridge said it is the only university that still insists on a core of subjects students must have studied if they want to apply for a place at one of its colleges, which includes a GCSE level A to C in a foreign language.

But from next September Cambridge wants to scrap the system and leave it up to individual departments to specify the subjects and qualifications required.

One reason behind the change was the government's decision to drop a compulsory foreign language from the national curriculum after 14.

The change in the curriculum has been significant, the university said. In 2000 80% of all school students - from both the private and state schools - took a foreign language at GCSE, but that has now fallen to below 50%. The number of state schools where students are required to study a foreign language after 14 is now around 17%, the university said.

Geoff Parks, director of admissions for Cambridge colleges, said: "This change would remove something which has, unfortunately, become a significant barrier impeding access to Cambridge."

Dr Anne Davidson Lund, director of policy research at CILT, the National Centre for Languages, said: "This is only one university - all the other universities have taken out the requirement of a modern language some time since." She said a trend of modern languages only being studied by pupils in the independent sector or at grammar schools after the age of 14 was creating a culture of "elitism in languages".

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