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Posts Tagged ‘English’

China bars English words in all publications

In Uncategorized on December 24, 2010 at 4:32 am

BEIJING, Dec 22, 2010 (AFP) – Chinese newspapers, books and websites will no longer be allowed to use English words and phrases, the country’s publishing body has announced, saying the “purity” of the Chinese language is in peril.

The General Administration of Press and Publication, which announced the new rule on Monday, said the increasing use of English words and abbreviations in Chinese texts had caused confusion and was a means of “abusing the language”.

Such practices “severely damaged the standard and purity of the Chinese language and disrupted the harmonious and healthy language and cultural environment, causing negative social impacts,” the body said on its website.

“It is banned to mix at will foreign language phrases such as English words or abbreviations with Chinese publications, creating words of vague meaning that are not exactly Chinese or of any foreign language,” it said.

“Publishing houses and the media must further strengthen the regulated use of foreign languages and respect the structure, glossary and grammar of the Chinese and foreign languages.”

GAPP said companies which violated the regulation would face “administrative punishment” without offering specifics.

English abbreviations such as NBA (National Basketball Association), GDP (gross domestic product), CPI (consumer price index) and WTO (World Trade Organization) are commonly used in Chinese publications.

They are also often used in everyday conversation, and government officials routinely use the abbreviations at press conferences.

The body left a small loophole, stipulating in the regulation that “if necessary”, English terms could be used but must be followed by a direct translation of the abbreviation or an explanation in Chinese.

The names of people or places in English also must be translated.

One editor at a Beijing publishing house told the China Daily that the new GAPP regulation could actually result in reduced understanding.

“The intention of protecting the Chinese language is good. But in an age of globalisation, when some English acronyms like WTO have been widely accepted by readers, it might be too absolute to eliminate them,” the editor said.

“Conversationally, people also use these words all the time, so the regulation could create discord between the oral and written uses of language.”

China has launched several campaigns in recent years to try to root out poor grammar and misused vocabulary in official usage.

Sometimes those campaigns go awry, resulting in awkward Chinglish. In the run-up to last month’s Asian Games in Guangzhou, signs were posted in the metro that read “Towards Jichang”. “Jichang” means airport.

Earlier this year, China Central Television and Beijing Television told the China Daily that they had received notification from the government to avoid using certain English abbreviations on Chinese programmes.

But English abbreviations are still commonly heard on regular news and sports broadcasts.

The Global Times quoted an editor at a Beijing publishing house as saying finding translations for globally used acronyms would be time-consuming and confusing.

“I wonder how many people understand ‘guoji shangye jiqi gongsi’, when IBM is instantly recognisable,” the editor said.

Source: SGGP

HCMC conducts pilot English teaching program for first, third graders

In Uncategorized on November 22, 2010 at 10:03 am

English singing contest takes place

In Uncategorized on November 11, 2010 at 9:00 am

Seminar on learning English effectively to be held

In Uncategorized on November 5, 2010 at 3:54 pm

MoET launched an English Olympic Contest

In Uncategorized on November 5, 2010 at 11:20 am

Rescue on blazing ship carrying 111 off English coast

In Uncategorized on October 27, 2010 at 9:11 am

LONDON, Oct 27, 2010 (AFP) – An operation was under way Wednesday to rescue 111 people from a factory fishing vessel which caught fire southwest of the Isles of Scilly off southwest England, the coastguard said.

“There are 81 persons in life rafts with 30 people remaining on the ship fighting the fire,” a spokesman said, adding that the “Athena” was 230 miles (370 kilometres) southwest of the Isles of Scilly.

Source: SGGP

Al-Qaeda reaches out armed with English, Internet

In Uncategorized on October 18, 2010 at 6:25 am

AFP/SITE – A SITE Intelligence Group image shows a pubilcation by the Yemen based Al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula.

DUBAI, Oct. 18 (AFP) – Al-Qaeda has combined the global reach of both the English language and the Internet as cyber-terrorism tools to win over non-Arab sympathisers.

Al-Qaeda’s Yemen-based wing released the first edition of an online English-language magazine, Inspire, four months ago that included an article on how to build a bomb.

A second, 74-page edition made it to the World Wide Web last week instructing Muslims in Western countries on how to weld deadly steel blades onto SUV vehicles and then plough into civilian crowds.

With Inspire, edited by Al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP), the group hopes to recruit young Westerners to the jihadi cause and to apparently encourage random attacks.

“This is by no doubt a new experiment” as it “is the first time Al-Qaeda issues an English-language publication,” a Paris-based expert on Middle East Islamist groups, Dominique Thomas, told AFP.

“These messages target Muslim communities living” outside the Arab world, Thomas said.

Philip Seib, a professor at the University of Southern California and co-author of “Global Terrorism and New Media,” believes the terror network has itself become a media organisation.

“It might be time to stop thinking of Al-Qaeda as the terrorist organisation that does media and more as the media organisation that does terror,” Seib said.

Since the September 11, 2001 attacks on the United States, video, audio and written Al-Qaeda statements have mushroomed on the Internet. Now, the network has a complete web-magazine in English.

“This is a shift” in Al-Qaeda’s strategies, said Mustafa Alani, security expert at the Dubai-based think-tank, the Gulf Research Centre.

“Previously, they never cared about non-Arabic readers. This is another dimension of a global war aiming at global recruitment,” he added.

Al-Qaeda “exported” militants, now it “imports” them, it used the Internet to “inform” people, now it’s using it to “recruit” them, Alani said.

Prime contenders for the authors of the new strategy are two Al-Qaeda-linked US citizens, Anwar al-Awlaqi and Samir Khan, both of whom are believed to be in Yemen.

Awlaqi, a 39-year-old American cleric of Yemeni origin, has been linked to US army Major Nidal Hasan who shot dead 13 people in Texas and to a Nigerian student accused of trying to blow up a US airliner on December 25.

Fluent in English, Awlaqi is bent on radicalising fellow US and Western citizens and publicly urged American Muslims to follow the example of Hasan in a video message last May.

US President Barack Obama’s administration has authorised his targeted killing, in a rare move against an American citizen.

The other American believed to be behind the strategy is Samir Khan, a US citizen of Pakistani origin, suspected by US intelligence to be an Internet militant who once operated out of his parents’ basement in New York.

“I’m proud to be a traitor to America,” Khan writes in Inspire’s second edition. “I’m proud to be a traitor in America’s eyes just as much as I’m proud to be a Muslim.

In a global campaign, Al-Qaeda has opted for a borderless means of communication to spread its message and encourage militants to join the “jihad” (holy war) from any part of the world.

Inspire lists a number of Al-Qaeda emails, including a Hotmail address.

But the group advises would-be recruits to download encryption software before sending messages in order to “avoid detection from the intelligence services.”

European governments regularly arrest Islamist forum members.

“Anyone, living in any part of the world can direct a jihadi forum from his home,” said Thomas.

Last year, France and Belgium launched a wave of arrests against “webmasters and members of three major forums which diffused jihadist information on the Internet,” said the Paris-based expert.

The forums have since been closed.

“They want to increase their visibility and the logical way to do that is in English. I think it’s successful, as they’re getting attention at very little cost to them … They’re expanding their audience base,” Seib said.

To curb the network’s growing threat, “governments need to make an effort to use the new media in as effective a way as the terrorist organisations have been,” he said. “You just have to fight their information with your own.”

Source: SGGP

New bi-lingual website designed to support high school English teachers

In Uncategorized on October 13, 2010 at 8:03 am

British Council, in partnership with the Ministry of Education and Training, will launch a competition to promote a fantastic new bi-lingual website designed specifically for upper secondary teachers of English teaching textbooks grade 10, 11 and 12 in Vietnam.

The website’s surface. The website desigend to help high school English teachers

The organizers will officially announce the launch of the competition at the Grand Hotel in Ho Chi Minh City on September 17. Key figures from the Ministry of Education as well as ELT specialists and teachers from 6 provinces in the south of Vietnam will attend the ceremony.

With a wealth of materials already available on the net for teachers and learners of English, the Ministry of Education have worked with the British Council to create a unique website for Vietnam which links this abundance of materials directly back to the English course books for Grades 10, 11 and 12.

Mr Nguyen Vinh Hien, Vice Minister of Education and Training, says: “The site is a very useful source of materials for both teachers and learners of English in Vietnam especially for upper secondary school sector, which can help meet the need for strengthening the English teaching and learning capacity.”

The website provides teachers with useful teaching resources, techniques and methodologies which have been consulted by Vietnamese and British specialists. With this support, teachers can improve their teaching skills and use the materials effectively in their daily teaching”

For teachers who need to fulfil the requirements of the curriculum but also want to motivate their learners through more interactive activities, it is now just a simple matter of logging on to, clicking on the grade and unit you are teaching and selecting an activity to supplement your lesson. Guidelines for using the activities are in both English and Vietnamese. And there are also low-tech options for using the materials in classrooms without a computer.

Teachers can also find tips on dealing with a range of everyday problems such as correcting errors and managing large classes. There is also a section on professional development and opportunities to become part of a global network of teachers via our online forum.

Simon Beardow, Deputy Director, British Council, says, ‘The teaching English website is a great example of how British Council’s Access English project remains committed to working in partnership with the Ministry of Education and Training to provide teachers of English across Vietnam with access to quality teaching resources and opportunities to engage with other English teachers from around the world.’

Access English is a 4-year project developed and run by the British Council in partnership with ministries of education in nine countries in East Asia including Indonesia, Japan, Korea, Malaysia, the Philippines, Singapore, Taiwan, Thailand and Vietnam.

Although there is great diversity in the region, what the above countries share is a need for support in developing national English language teaching agendas at both primary and secondary level. The project aims to provide support to changes in English language teaching in three areas: support for policy makers, support for teacher educators and support for teachers.

Source: SGGP

English Olympic contest for high-school pupils launched

In Uncategorized on October 13, 2010 at 8:01 am

The Ho Chi Minh City Education and Training Department in cooperation with Apollo English Center have launched the 2010 English Olympic contest for high-school pupils.

Students in a class at an Apollo English center in Ho Chi Minh City

The contest is aimed to help pupils practice English and improve essential skills.

The contest has three rounds, including eloquence and listening tests, and 100 multiple-choice questions concerning culture, science, society and history.
Pupils can register for the contest at schools or by October 4.

Winners will get scholarships to the center for studying English and valuable rewards. 

Source: SGGP

Students must study English from third grade on

In Uncategorized on August 2, 2010 at 7:18 am

The Ministry of Education and Training has recently drafted a new proposal that would include teaching English at the primary school level, as part of the Strategy for Education Development for 2008-2020, which aims to build a modern educational system.

Pupils of Phan Dinh Phung Primary School study English in their class (Photo: SGGP)

According to the draft, primary school students would have to learn English starting in third grade and completing a total of 1,155 hours by the end of primary school.

According to the draft, after completing the program, students will be tell short stories in English, write five-sentence paragraphs, read and comprehend short English lessons and conduct brief conversations in English.

Students graduating from primary school will possess English capabilities equivalent to the Level 1 English proficiency as determined by the European Association for Language Testing and Assessment (EALTA).

Source: SGGP