A majority of Taiwanese adults, who consider themselves able to speak only "broken English" or "no English at all," think learning English is an important part of education in the era of globalization, a recent poll found. \nThe public opinion poll, conducted by the Chinese-language United Daily News, found that a great majority of Taiwanese adults believe it important to have their children begin studying English at a younger age, perhaps at the grade-school level. \nA total of 47 percent of adults surveyed said they support the notion that English lessons be made a major part of the curriculum in primary school, as they consider it more important for youngsters to learn English than to learn Mandarin Chinese, the poll found. \nAlthough many of the adults surveyed agreed that English learning should be a major part of the grade school curriculum, they remain divided over what the best time to begin such classes is, the survey found. \nAccording to the poll, some 30 percent of the respondents said they think it is better to begin English lessons in the first or second grade, compared with 30 percent who favor English classes beginning in the third or fourth grade, and 26 percent who think it better to begin English lessons in the fifth or sixth grade. \nMeanwhile, the poll found that only about 1 percent of those surveyed consider themselves to fluent English speakers, another 1 percent consider their English-speaking ability to be "so so," 28 percent said they are able to speak "some English," while a high of 60 percent admitted they "don't speak English at all." \nOf those adults who have learned English in school, some 46 percent said they could not speak English publicly, according to the poll. \nOne the reasons why the average Taiwan adult cannot speak English, 46 percent of the respondents put the blame on a "lack of an environment to practice English." \nOnly 5 percent said they speak English "routinely" on a daily basis, compared with 22 percent who said it is necessary for them to speak English "every now and then," and a high of 74 percent who said there is no need at all for them to speak English at work. \nAmong the salary-class respondents, 9 percent said English is one of the major languages in their place of work, 24 percent said English speaking or usage is "occasional," and 67 percent said English is not required at all. \nDespite the fact that most Taiwanese adults don't speak English and that the language is not required in most of their daily lives, 44 percent of the respondents said they still consider being able to speak English important to them, while 52 percent said it is not. \nA total of 831 Taiwanese adults were interviewed via telephone between April 11-12 for the daily's most recent survey. The poll's margin of error is said to be 3.4 percentage points. \nIn related news, the Ministry of Education (MOE) has recently initiated a comprehensive English teaching program, which is part of the ongoing Six-year National Development Project, aiming at raising the English proficiency standards of all the people of Taiwan. \nMOE officials said the ministry would push for a revision to the existing Education Law so as to enable foreign nationals who use English as their mother tongue to teach in primary schools nationwide in a bid to accelerate the "English learning for all people" campaign.
‘SMEAR CAMPAIGN’: The ‘Global Times’ accused the DPP of offering politicians in Somaliland bribes and promoting Taiwanese independence by funding US think tanks The Ministry of Foreign Affairs yesterday denounced China’s Global Times for disseminating disinformation about Taiwan, after the Chinese state-run newspaper claimed that the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) has been bribing Somaliland politicians. Taiwan in August last year inaugurated the Taiwan Representative Office in the Republic of Somaliland, which is the nation’s only representative office whose title uses just the name “Taiwan.” The East African country also established a representative office in Taipei, despite the absence of formal diplomatic relations. The Chinese-language Global Times on Monday accused the DPP of offering Somaliland politicians and their families considerable bribes, citing anonymous sources. The International Cooperation
Phase 2 clinical trial results of the Medigen Vaccine Biologics Corp’s COVID-19 vaccine on Wednesday were published on the Web site of The Lancet: Respiratory Medicine, in an early preview before publication. The study paves the way for other nations to issue emergency use authorizations or produce the Medigen vaccine, given The Lancet’s credibility as a highly respected medical journal with a rigorous peer-review process, Medigen’s international affairs director Lien Chia-en (連加恩) said. Lien said that the study is important as it proposes methods for converting international units for efficacy comparisons. The methods have been used for correlating the efficacy of hepatitis B
Ambassador Theaters on Tuesday announced that its Breeze Center cinemas in Taipei’s Songshan District (松山) would close late this month after screening thousands of major Hollywood movies and local favorites over two decades. Ambassador Theaters, one of the largest cinema chain operators in Taiwan, said that Oct. 25 would be the last day the Breeze Center cinemas screen movies, adding that its lease expires on that day. “We sincerely appreciate the support and recognition from audiences in Taipei over the past 20 years,” the company said. “We look forward to seeing you again in the future.” The cinemas started operating in 2001, upon
BUMPING AROUND: A total of 143 people sustained fall injuries at MRT stations or inside trains over eight months, with a majority caused by ‘distracted walking’ Taipei Rapid Transit Corp yesterday urged people to avoid looking at their phones when walking, saying 73 cases of “distracted walking injuries” had occurred in the Taipei Mass Rapid Transit (MRT) system from January to August. As the local COVID-19 situation has been brought under control, passenger traffic has been increasing, reaching about 1.5 million rides per day last month, the company said. However, many passengers have been looking at their phones as they walk through MRT stations, which can lead to collisions with other passengers or injury from falling down stairs. A total of 143 people sustained fall injuries at MRT stations