Taiwan students jumpstart English level in 7 months

Positive results from NTNU and AIT joint English learning initiative

Hualien students show off their new English skills.

Hualien students show off their new English skills. (By Wikimedia Commons)

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — Members of AIT and National Taiwan Normal University (NTNU) held a press conference today to commend the great progress made by a group of Hualien students learning English.

A group of 21 Hualien junior high school students met once a week for 90 minutes over seven months to learn English. In the beginning the group was unfamiliar with the ABC's and now the students are able to speak and write in English, sing English songs, as well as order food in English, which they demonstrated today by ordering food at McDonald's, according to the NTNU website.

Dr. William C. Vocke, executive director of the Taiwan Fulbright Foundation, said at the press conference that under the partnership of the American and Taiwanese governments, 112 American university students will in arrive in Taiwan to teach English this August and nine will be stationed in Hualien.

The original group of instructors were from the NTNU PASSION group (Project of Adaptive Screening, Streaming, and Instruction for Omni-directional Nurturing). The group aims to help improve the overall academic performance of low scoring students.

At the Meilun Junior High School in Hualien, 60% of the students are low-scoring and over 65% of those students are aboriginal, according to LTN.