Why Study Languages
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Why Study Languages. Why Study Languages. …When Everyone Speaks English?. Produced by the Subject Centre for Languages, Linguistics and Area Studies. Endorsed by Languages Work. Sex Goda Skäl För Att Studera Språk…. Du kan få ett jobb Du har nytta av det ute i världen

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Why Study Languages

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Why study languages

Why Study Languages

Why Study Languages

…When Everyone Speaks English?

Produced by the Subject Centre for Languages, Linguistics and Area Studies

Endorsed by Languages Work


Why study languages

Sex Goda Skäl FörAtt Studera Språk…

Du kan få ett jobb

Du har nytta av det ute i världen

Du kommer att träffa mycket folk

Du lär känna dig själv bättre

Du kan uppleva nya kulturer

Det är spännande

Did you understand?


Why study languages

Six Good Reasons forStudying Languages…

It’ll get you a job

It’s exciting

It gets you places

You’ll meet loads of new people

You can enjoy new cultures

You’ll find out more about yourself


Why study languages

It’ll Get You a Job

A few facts about language graduates and employability

But first – which of the following subjects do YOU think have the best job prospects?

Physical SciencesGerman

LawMathematics

Biological SciencesEnglish

EducationBusiness Studies

FrenchAgriculture/Forestry

PsychologyMedical Sciences


Why study languages

Medicine / Dentistry / Vet Science0.44%

Education3.19%

Law3.65%

German4.67%

French4.85%

All Modern Languages5.51%

Mathematics6.21%

Physical Sciences6.25%

English6.49%

Biological Sciences 6.61%

Psychology6.64%

Business / Administration 6.66%

Agriculture/Forestry6.70%

Source: Keith Marshall, 2003

It’ll Get You a Job

Average unemployment rates for

new graduates in the UK 1996-2002


Why study languages

Business Services25.3%

Banking / Finance 10.8%

Wholesale / Retail11.5%

Manufacturing9.0%

Public Administration9.2%

Community / Social Services 6.9%

Education8.0%

Transport / Communications6.9%

Health/Social Work5.3%

Hotels & Restaurants4.4%

International Organisations0.2%

Other Areas2.4%

Source: Keith Marshall, 2003

It’ll Get You a Job

The jobs new UK graduates

really did in 2002


Why study languages

It’ll Get You a Job

“Being able to speak other languages is a skill that gets you ahead”

The UK trades with over 200 countries worldwide (Source: Trade Partners UK, 2002)

"UK businesses need people with language skills, to operate at all levels."(Languages Work Handbook for Languages and Careers, CILT 2004)

“Overseas inward investment into this country means that multilinguals are needed in the UK” (Higher Education Advisory Panel)

“Communication barriers lead to missed business opportunities” (Plasberg, U. (1999) ‘Building bridges to Europe: languages for students of other disciplines’ in the Language Learning Journal, No. 20, pp. 51-58)


Why study languages

It’ll Get You a Job

“Being able to speak other languages is a skill that gets you ahead”

“One in every five British exporters (Statistics from Metra Martech) knows it is losing overseas business through its inability to overcome language and cultural differences.”

Ref: BCC Language Survey: The Impact of Foreign Languages on British Business - Part 1: The Qualitative Results (British

“The rapid expansion of opportunities for e-business within a shrinking world is driving a need for languages ability. Customer expectations and the high stakes of winning or losing business require competence to deal in a customer's language.”

Ref: Scottish Executive, Ministerial Action Group on Languages (2000) Citizens of a Multilingual World: Key Issues (www.scotland.gov.uk-library3-education-mwki-07.asp)


Why study languages

It’ll Get You a Job

“Being able to speak other languages is a skill that gets you ahead”

Sixth form students say:

“A language allows entry to the European marketplace.”  

“A language gives you a competitive edge over an opponent.”

“A language is a USP (unique selling point).”

“It’s an unusual qualification that employers respect.”

“Being successful at another language shows good communication skills and shows employers you are willing to learn new skills and welcome a challenge.”


Why study languages

It’ll Get You a Job

“Being able to speak other languages is a skill that gets you ahead”

University students say:

“A language degree is almost like a gift. It's an amazing advantage over other graduates. They're going to be working in English-speaking countries whereas you have the flexibility to go and work in a foreign-speaking country.” 

“In today’s world companies do a lot of business with foreign companies. They need to be able to communicate with them. They need people with languages.”


Why study languages

It’ll Get You a Job

It’s not just

language skills either

Employers say they value the key skills developed by language learners – these include:

communication skills • team working skills interpersonal skills • presentation skills problem solving skills • organisational skills good learning strategies…

…can you think of any more?


Why study languages

It Gets You Places

Language degrees often involve some time working or studying abroad

This might involve living in a European country… or further afield in Africa, Asia, Latin America or North America

Students on non-language degrees can sometimes choose to go abroad on student exchanges


Why study languages

It Gets You Places

Living abroad is an experience…

“Going to university was amazing but going to Mexico was the best experience in my entire life – it was absolutely fantastic.

It was the Mexican culture and generally being in such a fantastic country – it was just so different to being in the UK”


Why study languages

It Gets You Places

You learn so much…

“You arrive and you have to learn about new customs and where people live. You learn to deal with new people. You have to think about every word you speak until suddenly you are fluent.

It makes you appreciate home too”

Suzanne is going back abroad after her final year to marry her Mexican boyfriend


Why study languages

You’ll Meet Loads of New People

“I’ve made lots of new friends, it’s really widened my horizons”

Using a language is a social activity and language learning leads to encounters with people from many backgrounds

“Speaking with people from different cultures is very enriching. Languages enable you to do this”

“Learning a language develops your interest in other people”


Why study languages

You’ll Find Out More About Yourself

Most people find their experiencesvery rewarding at a personal level

“It’s a challenge”

“It’s enriching – you develop yourself”

“It opens your mind to understanding other people but it also affects you in your own life”

“You learn to get on with your surroundings – you become less judgemental”


Why study languages

You Can EnjoyNew Cultures

You find out about and experience different cultures … whilst reflecting on your own

“I really enjoy meeting people with different perspectives on life – with different values – different traditions”

“Meeting other cultures, you start to think about your own country and background”

“You don’t realise that even the most basic things can be different”


Why study languages

It’s Exciting

“Just being able to communicate with people who know a different language from you – it’s a really great feeling”

And studying languages at university you will have lots of choice…

UCAS – the universities admissions service – lists over 7000 different language degree courses on its website


Why study languages

It’s Exciting

Languages you can choose include

Arabic • Chinese • Czech Dutch • French • German Gujerati • Hebrew • Hindi Indonesian • Irish • Italian Japanese • Polish • Portuguese Russian • Sanskrit • Slovak Spanish • Swahili • Swedish Tamil • Thai • Turkish • Welsh

…and many more…


Why study languages

It’s Exciting

There are 4 language learning routes you could follow at university

Route 1

Take a language degree – study one or more languages together with related modules in areas such as

linguistics • drama • film & media politics & society • history • literature popular culture


Why study languages

It’s Exciting

Route 2

Take a degree which integrates study of a language with other subjects. This includes degrees in

European Studies • International Studies • Business Studies • Leisure & Tourism

There are many other possibilities


Why study languages

It’s Exciting

“I find Spanish very challenging and really relevant to my career choice”

Route 3

Take a joint degree and combine language study with another discipline e.g.

Spanish & Computer Science • Politics & Arabic • Marine Sciences with French •Geology & Italian

Look in prospectuses to discover more options…


Why study languages

It’s Exciting

Route 4

Take a language option at some point in your degree

Sometimes you can take specialist language options which relate directly to your main course of study e.g.

French for Lawyers • German for Engineers • Italian for Art Historians


Why study languages

And If You Still Need Convincing…

Studying languages means

Maximum Career ProspectsYou will be very employable

Maximum ExperienceThere are lots of personal benefits

Maximum ChoiceThere are many languages and courses to choose from

Maximum FunIt’s certainly not all work and no play

Produced by the Subject Centre for Languages, Linguistics and Area Studies


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