Most requested languages in all sectors. Credit: Current language roles needed in the labor market(2023).
British students wishing to progress in the world of work should study an additional language. New research from the University of Portsmouth, based on analysis of job advertisements targeting graduates, shows a high demand for language skills that is now often unmet in high school settings.
Dr. Begoña Rodríguez de Céspedes is Associate Professor of Translation Studies at the University of Portsmouth and a member of the Executive Committee of the Modern Languages University Council. Amid concerns that high schools often waive the requirement to study foreign languages, she has been analyzing the needs of employers to find candidates with the right skills.
His research shows that there are hundreds of jobs listed for graduates where an additional language is required. German is the most requested, closely followed by French. During a period of one month in the summer of 2022, Dr. Rodríguez de Céspedes oversaw UK job advertisements in a wide range of employment fields. The time frame reflected the period in which many graduates apply for jobs. A job was included in the data only if the publication listed a second language as required or essential, rather than simply as desirable, preferred, or advantageous.
This new study comes as the UK government announces £14.9m of new funding to expand a ‘language centres’ scheme, which is designed to increase the uptake and quality of language teaching for young people. from 14 to 18 years old. It is paying special attention to increasing the number of students studying German, a decision supported by this latest research from the University of Portsmouth.
In total, 619 job postings were discovered across multitudes of websites that required language proficiency as a primary requirement, of which 237 were asking for German, 208 were asking for French, 96 were listing Spanish, and 71 were asking for an Italian-speaking candidate. The investigation also looked at which sectors were making these requests. It found that Customer Service, Customer Support and Call Center was the area with the highest demand, with 171 listings. This was followed by Sales, Account Management and Business Development, which made 120 requests for additional language skills.
Dr. Rodríguez de Céspedes says: “It is clear that employers are crying out for job candidates to speak additional languages, and the government also recognizes the crisis that has developed due to a large drop in the number of students who study them. Our research has shown that in multiple employment sectors an additional language is not only desirable, but essential. Students wishing to advance in the world of work should study an additional language for the chance to qualify for hundreds of works”.
Provided by the University of Portsmouth
Citation: Students lacking language skills will miss out on jobs, according to a new report (January 24, 2023) accessed January 24, 2023 at https://phys.org/news/2023-01-students-lacking-language -skills-jobs. html
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