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Taiwan: Students' English improving slowly: survey

Taiwan: Students' English improving slowly: survey

Taiwanese senior high school students scored an average of 543.8 in the 2009 Test of English for International Communication (TOEIC) exams, up from 524 in 2008, according to a survey released yesterday.

Benjamin Wang of the Taiwan branch of the U.S.-based Educational Testing Service (ETS) , which operates the exams and conducted the survey, said the score is an indication that students are steadily improving their English proficiency.

The students did better on the reading and listening parts than in 2008, he said, with scores going up 14 points and 5 points respectively.

The number of high school students taking TOEIC exams grew by about 30 percent, from 17,500 in 2008 to 22,656 in 2009, the survey also showed.

Students in the 15-18 age-group said they took TOEIC in the hope of increasing the chance of being accepted to better universities.

TOEIC is a test of English proficiency used as a standard for establishing workplace English writing skills and spoken English proficiency for non-native English-speaking people, the ETS website explains. The highest possible score is 990.

The ETS published a survey in 2009 showing Taiwanese students in four age-groups all fared worse than South Korean students in the 2008 TOEIC exams. Local senior high school students performed the poorest with 524 point on average, 151 points lower than that of their South Korean counterparts.

Updated : 2021-08-02 04:11 GMT+08:00