Sunday , May 26 2024

Vietnamese students rank 23rd globally in IELTS exam: annual report


Students inquiring about US college/universities at an education fair. — VNA/VNS Photo

HÀ NỘI — The average score on the International English Language Testing System (IELTS) of Vietnamese people in 2022 ranked 23rd out of 40 countries organising the IELTS exam.

The average score is 6.2 out of 9.0, the same rank as South Korea, Pakistan and India, according to the data from the 2023 annual report on foreign language teaching and learning, issued by the Việt Nam National Institute of Educational Sciences and Management Board of the National Project on Teaching and Learning Foreign Languages.

The annual report highlights notable figures related to the IELTS exam.

After five years, the proportion of students aged 16-22 among all IELTS test takers increased to 62 per cent, particularly, the 16-18 year old group accounts for 30 per cent, an increase of 20 times compared to 2018, said Nguyễn Thị Mai Hữu, head of the Management Board for the National Project on Teaching and Learning Foreign Languages.

According to the report, since 2017, the Ministry of Education and Training (MoET) has approved the use of scores from several international exams such as IELTS and TOEIC (test of English for International Communication) for English subject in high school graduation exams.

Specifically, MoET gives exam exemption and calculates a score 10 out of 10 for the foreign language subject in graduation exams for candidates with an IELTS certificate of 4.0 or higher or equivalent.

In 2021, more than 28,600 candidates were eligible for exam exemption, in 2022 the number increased to more than 35,000 and this year it is nearly 47,000.

In addition, dozens of universities accept candidates with IELTS and equivalent certificates. These are the reasons why the group of candidates in this age group is increasing, the report said.

The report also showed that the age of Vietnamese people taking the IELTS exam is getting younger and younger.

In 2018, more than 50 per cent of IELTS test takers were over 23 years old, only nearly 1.5 per cent of test takers were 16-18 years old and more than 13 per cent were in the 19-22 year old group, while in 2023 the test takers aged from 16-18 accounts for 30 per cent.

According to the report, the results of Vietnamese students were not really outstanding in international English exams. Vietnamese students showed strengths in reading and listening tests and have the most difficulty with speaking, in which the average score is 14 out of 30 and 5.8, for the TOEFL (Test of English as a Foreign Language) and IELTS certificates, respectively.

For the national high school graduation exam, the average test score of students in 2021-23 period reaches 6 out of 10 points, of which 42-50 per cent of students score below 5 points.

Therefore, for many years, researchers, educators and policy makers have paid special attention to the barriers Vietnamese students are facing in the process of acquiring and using foreign languages, offering solutions to help Vietnamese students achieve breakthroughs in their language abilities, especially English.

Prof. Lê Anh Vinh, Director of the Việt Nam National Institute of Educational Sciences, said that the trend of learning foreign languages ​​among high school students today is increasing.

This comes from their own needs. They consider foreign languages ​an important tool to learn about the world, Vinh said.

According to survey results and evaluation of English teaching and learning under the 2018 General Education Programme, students were interested in learning English and the trend of integrating technology in English teaching.

English teaching was paid more attention in the context of global citizenship and social-emotional intelligence education.

On that basis, the research team proposed solutions to increase the effectiveness of foreign language teaching and learning in Việt Nam.

Vinh highly appreciated the pioneering role of the team of English teachers according to the 2018 General Education Programme in updating new teaching methods and applying information technology.

This has contributed to improving English proficiency over the past 10 years, gradually changing the perception of students, families, schools and society about learning foreign languages ​​in Việt Nam, the professor said. —  VNS



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