Many people live in countries where English is widely spoken and yet find themselves lagging behind others around them in their English fluency – be it in a social setting, their grades in school and university, or finding they have limited job prospects because they are not fluent in English.
English is the most commonly used language in the corporate world and the knowledge of English is one of the most important employability skills.
Sometimes, through no fault of their own, people don’t make meaningful progress as they haven’t the tools to help them practice conversational English in a natural engaging way that seamlessly integrates with their day to day lives
Meanwhile, U.S. employers added 75,000 jobs in May 2019 and the nation’s unemployment rate stayed the same at 3.6 percent, according to data released Friday by the Labor Department. Meanwhile, average hourly pay for workers rose 3.1 percent from a year earlier, to $27.83 from $26.99. Apparently, there are jobs to be had for the right individuals.
Can blockchain and token rewards for learning help?
These daily habits and practices can have a profound effect on the outcome of a students life, as the private sector offers more competitive salaries and benefits for those fluent in the English language.
One of the common complaints among employers within Asia is that graduates have a poor command of English when they enter the workplace. This inability to communicate fluently in English puts them at a distinct disadvantage in the job market, as most posts require candidates to be proficient in English.
Whose fault is it: Students or Teachers?
When assessing why students’ have such poor English skills an underlying factor has to do with how the English curriculum is taught in schools.
A key point made in the Malaysia Education Blueprint 2013-2025 (MEB) is that: “Lower student performance in [the] English language appears to be driven by low proficiency among English language teachers.”
But is it fair to blame teachers?
Could the system be at fault? How much time per week is spent on learning English?
In many countries, only 20 percent of instructional time is spent on learning the English language, and this threshold may be insufficient for students to build language proficiency.
Could we use blockchain gamification incentives to increase this to 40%? And if we did, what effect would that have on the employer/employee outcomes?
There is often a far greater emphasis placed on grammar, and the silent skills of reading and writing with very little time devoted to actual conversational practice. The focus on listening develops a passive student rather than one that is actively engaged in a conversation.
Can blockchain change the student-teacher relationship?
In a Malaysian study, students at school showed signs of improvement during their English classes after a few weeks of increased weekly study; they became more participative and confident and engaging with the English language. This suggests that time and increased conversation interaction can play a role in increasing performance.
Countries could boost their students’ English proficiency by upskilling their English language teachers. Giving students greater exposure to well trained English teachers will change the English landscape in those countries, and impact the workplace locally and globally.
We all understand that this is not a case of instant gratification.
Each small improvement we make is one step closer towards correcting some of the mistakes that have led to the substandard English taught in many parts of the world.
It’s a global challenge, and one that as educators we have a responsibility to focus on.
Another 20% of the world’s population fluent in English will result in 1.5 billion people communicating more effectively.
Disclaimer: Mitch Rankin is the Founder and CEO of English Forward and opinions and comments cited here are his own does not represent those of Cryptopolitan. Nevertheless, he invites all of you to the biggest online “Learn English” question-and-answers platform. English Forward encourages students to join its Telegram chat at t.me/EnglishForwardCommunity and practice their conversation skills in a supportive environment. Its coming blockchain tutor market place will give students the ability to communicate with live tutors for specialized conversation in specific fields of employment, preparing them for the workplace.