Sweden at Top, Middle East at Bottom of EF's Global Ranking of English Skills

Nov 03, 2015, 03:00 ET from EF Education First

ZURICH, November 3, 2015 /PRNewswire/ --

The EF English Proficiency Index 2015 Shows the State of Worldwide English Proficiency

EF Education First released today the 5th annual edition of its EF English Proficiency Index (EF EPI), the world's largest ranking of countries by English skills. The report identifies global and regional English language learning trends and analyzes the relationship between countries' English proficiency and their economic competitiveness. This year's EF EPI report profiles all 70 ranked countries, using test data from 910,000 adult English language learners.

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"The EF EPI shows the power of big data to inform education policy, investment decisions, and classroom practices," said Minh Tran, EF's Director of Research. "We are thrilled that this year the EF EPI has started incorporating data from the EF Standard English Test (EFSET), which is revolutionizing the testing industry as the world's first free standardized English test."

EF launched the EFSET to offer the world's two billion English learners a high-quality standardized English test that is convenient and accessible. Offered for free online at http://www.efset.org, the EFSET is a valuable tool for individuals, governments, universities, and companies.

Two recent correlation studies revealed that the EFSET is as reliable as the TOEFL and the IELTS at measuring test takers' English skills. Researchers from the Harvard Graduate School of Education have used the EFSET for language research, and LinkedIn now prompts its members to certify their English with the EFSET. EFSET data will improve the EF EPI as an international benchmark of adult English proficiency.

Key findings of this year's EF EPI include:

  • The report reveals for the first time the connection between countries' English levels and their innovation metrics such as countries' high-technology exports and expenditures on R&D.
  • Although the rankings shift every year, the correlations between countries' English ability and Gross National Income per capita, quality of life, Internet connectivity, and a range of other indicators remain strong and stable.
  • Women speak English better than men in almost every country surveyed, but this gender gap is absent in the very high proficiency countries in Northern Europe.
  • European countries, particularly the Nordic nations, continue to outperform other regions, claiming the top ten slots in the ranking.
  • The Middle East and North Africa is the only region to experience declining English proficiency.

The full EF EPI 2015 ranking is below. The EF EPI report and additional analysis are available at http://www.ef.com/epi/.

EF Education First is an international education company that focuses on language, academics, and cultural experience. Founded in 1965, EF's mission is "opening the world through education." With more than 500 schools and offices in 53 countries, EF is the Official Language Training Supplier of the Rio 2016 Summer Olympics.

EF English Proficiency Index 2015  


   
    Rank Country              EF EPI Score
    1    Sweden               70.94
    2    Netherlands          70.58
    3    Denmark              70.05
    4    Norway               67.83
    5    Finland              65.32
    6    Slovenia             64.97
    7    Estonia              63.73
    8    Luxembourg           63.45
    9    Poland               62.95
    10   Austria              61.97
    11   Germany              61.83
    12   Singapore            61.08
    13   Portugal             60.61
    14   Malaysia             60.30
    15   Argentina            60.26
    16   Romania              59.69
    17   Belgium              59.13
    18   Czech Republic       59.01
    19   Switzerland          58.43
    20   India                58.21
    21   Hungary              57.90
    22   Latvia               57.16
    23   Spain                56.80
    24   Dominican Republic   56.71
    25   Slovakia             56.34
    26   Lithuania            55.08
    27   South Korea          54.52
    28   Italy                54.02
    29   Vietnam              53.81
    30   Japan                53.57
    31   Taiwan               53.18
    32   Indonesia            52.91
    33   Hong Kong            52.70
    34   Ukraine              52.61
    35   Peru                 52.46
    36   Chile                51.88
    37   France               51.84
    38   Ecuador              51.67
    39   Russia               51.59
    40   Mexico               51.34
    41   Brazil               51.05
    42   United Arab Emirates 50.87
    43   Costa Rica           50.53
    44   Uruguay              50.25
    45   Pakistan             49.96
    46   Guatemala            49.67
    47   China                49.41
    48   Panama               48.77
    49   Sri Lanka            47.89
    50   Turkey               47.62
    51   Yemen                47.60
    52   Morocco              47.40
    53   Jordan               47.33
    54   Kazakhstan           47.04
    55   Egypt                46.73
    56   Iran                 46.59
    57   Colombia             46.54
    58   Oman                 46.34
    59   Venezuela            46.14
    60   Azerbaijan           46.12
    61   El Salvador          45.52
    62   Thailand             45.35
    63   Qatar                43.72
    64   Mongolia             43.64
    65   Kuwait               42.65
    66   Iraq                 40.69
    67   Algeria              40.34
    68   Saudi Arabia         39.93
    69   Cambodia             39.15
    70   Libya                37.86

SOURCE EF Education First