Declining Interest in Developing Foreign Language Skills(B级) 综合
Australia’s foreign language skills are declining, voice of America has reported. New figures show that only 13 percent of high school graduates can speak a foreign language. But four decades ago, 40 percent had foreign language skills.
Professor Elise Tipton, from the University of Sydney, says increasingly students do not feel the need to learn another language to boost their career. She believes that Australia’s economic boom, which is driven by red-hot demand for its minerals, is helping mask serious deficiencies in its language skills.转自环 球 网校edu24ol.com转自环 球 网校edu24ol.com转自环 球 网校edu24ol.com
Australia does business very successfully in English with most of its trading partners. But as the world’s economic power shifts to emerging regions such as Asia, its language gap could soon be exposed. According to the new figures, less than 6.5 percent of high school graduates are proficient in an Asian language. Academics worry that this means Australia will increasingly be isolated from its economically important Asian neighbors. Dilip Dutta, from the economice and business faculty at Sydney University, says language skills can enhance trading opportunities. IF Australians want to trade with Asian countries, it is very important for them to learn the language that will help them to get closer to the culture.
But students have different opinions about Asian language learning Pippa McCowage, a 22-year-old Australian student, says many young Australians have a half-hearted approach to foreign languages, and the language curriculum is often weak. “While we’re encouraged in high school to learn another language, it’s not really apparent to me as a realistic expectation that you will have to speak it,” said McCowage. “For example, I learned Japanese in high school, when I went on an exchange in Year 10, I found that the Japanese students of my age had a much greater proficiency in English than I did in Japanese. So in that sense, it almost discourages you.
At present, about 70 percent of Australia’s major exports go to Asia and the Australian government has been keen on developing closer economic and diplomatic ties with Asia. Academics say that, as Asia becomes one of the world’s economic powerhouses, Australia needs to improve its language skills if it is to take full advantage of the business opportunities on its doorstep.
1. How much percent of high school graduates were proficient in foreign languages forty years ago?
A. 70. B) 13. C) 40. D) 6.5.
2. What can be inferred from paragraph 2?转自环 球 网校edu24ol.com转自环 球 网校edu24ol.com转自环 球 网校edu24ol.com
A) Australia has rich deposits of minerals.
B) Australia is essentially a self-sufficient country.
C) Australia has no intention to trade with Asian countres.
D) Australian students are not required to learn a foreign language.
3.What does Dilip Dutta think language skills can do?
A. Improve your relation with your partner.
B. Help settle international conflicts.转自环 球 网校edu24ol.com转自环 球 网校edu24ol.com转自环 球 网校edu24ol.com
C. Remove barriers in negotiations.
D. Increase trading opportunities.
4. Why ha the Australian government been keenly interested in strengthening ties with Asia?
A) Because Asia is where Australia is located.
B) Because Asia is where Australia’s major exports go.转自环 球 网校edu24ol.com转自环 球 网校edu24ol.com转自环 球 网校edu24ol.com
C) Because Asia is where Australians go and spend their holidays.
C) Because Asia is where Australia can play a big role in international affairs.
5. The word faculty in paragraph 3 can be replaced by
A) college. B) institute. C) university. D) department.
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