近年来,随着中国的影响力遍及全球,世界各地都掀起了一股“汉语热”。

对于英国学生来说,学习中文不仅是兴趣,更成为了提升未来竞争力的一项重要技能。

据英国《每日电讯报》网站报道,在素有“英国高考”之称的A-level考试中,今年选考汉语的考生人数首次超过德语,汉语成为英国第三大热门外语。

2018年A-level考试放榜日:汉语首次超过德语

报道称,今年有3334名学生报考了汉语A-level考试,德语有3058人。选考汉语的报名人数比去年增长了8.6%,而德语则减少了16.5%。

培生集团高级官员德里克·理查森说,汉语“逆转”了现代语言受欢迎度下降的“趋势”。

“In languages we are seeing some significant decreases in entries for the main modern languages: French, German and Spanish,” he said.

他说:“入学考试中像法语、德语和西班牙语这样的主要现代语言,报考的人数大幅减少。”

But what we are also seeing is an increase in entries across some of the other languages that people study.

“但是我们同时也看到,报考其他一些语言的人数有所增加。”

“What this means is Chinese…is now more popular than German. So maybe young people are beginning to think about what languages will be useful to them in the future.”

“这意味着汉语……现在比德语更受欢迎。也许年轻人开始思考未来哪些语言对他们来说更有用。”

A-level考试中,汉语现在比德语更受欢迎。报考A-level外语考试的学生人数(图源:《每日电讯报》)

报道称,法语仍然是最受欢迎的外语科目,其次是西班牙语。但是与去年相比,这两种语言的报考人数分别减少了8%和4%。

俄语的报考人数比去年增加了3.4%,从去年的1122人增加到今年的1160人。然而,阿拉伯语的报考人数减少了5.4%,从782人减少到740人。

Suzanne O’Farrell, curriculum and assessment specialist at the Association of School and College Leaders (ASCL), said: “We’re seeing German just moving into extinction really. It is in severe decline.”

英国中学校长协会的课程与评估专家苏珊娜·奥法雷尔说:“我们发现德语几乎要无人问津了。报考人数下滑得非常严重。”

英国私立学校理事会(ISC)主席巴纳比·莱农说,过去学生们被教导说“如果学习德语,真的会对你的事业很有帮助”,但是现在情况不再是这样了。

“In the 1960s, 70s and even the 80s, Germany was the economic powerhouse of Europe,” he told The Daily Telegraph.

“在20世纪60、70年代甚至80年代,德国是欧洲经济强国,”他在接受《每日电讯报》采访时说。

“Pupils were strongly encouraged to study German because of the importance of the German economy. Although it is still strong, that argument has faded, and China has emerged in the last 25 years as the fastest growing economy in the world.”

“因为德国经济的重要性,人们大力鼓励学生学习德语。现在,尽管德国经济依然很强,但是这种观点正在逐渐消失,中国在过去25年中已经崛起为全球发展最快的经济体。”

英国的孔子学院学生伦敦书展现场朗诵中文诗词(中新社发 应妮摄)

曾担任哈罗公学校长的莱农说,报考汉语人数增长一定程度上是私立学校推动的,许多私立学校近年来都对汉语学习加大了投入

“It is not the case that large number of states schools are now teaching Chinese A-levels. They are not,” he said. He said many of the entries will be Chinese native speakers, adding that independent schools have attracted “large numbers” of Chinese pupils in recent years.

他说:“并不是说有大量公立学校现在开始教授汉语A-level课程。它们没有。” 他说,许多报名者的母语为汉语,私立学校近年来吸引了“大量”中国学生。

Aspirational middle class families sending their children to be educated in the UK has fuelled a steady increase in Chinese students, with number at fee-paying schools almost doubling in five years according to ISC data.

中国一些有抱负的中产阶级家庭把子女送到英国留学,导致来自中国的留学生人数稳步增长。英国私立学校理事会的数据显示,私立学校的中国留学生数量在5年内几乎翻番。

英国文化协会学校和技能总监马克·赫伯特对报考汉语人数增加表示欢迎。

“Against this overall downward trend, the increasing popularity of Chinese proves that our young people can be enthused to study languages,” he said.

“在整体呈下降趋势的背景下,汉语却越来越受欢迎,这证明我们的年轻人是可以充满热情地学习语言的,”他说。

enthuse:  [ɪnˈθju:z] 对……极热心

“Our research shows that Mandarin will be one of the most important languages for the UK’s future prosperity and global standing – but we mustn’t neglect Spanish, French and German which will still be vital post-Brexit.”

“我们的研究显示,汉语将是对英国未来繁荣和巩固全球地位最重要的语言之一,但我们绝不能忽视西班牙语、法语和德语,它们在英国‘脱欧’之后仍将非常重要。”

Nick Gibb, the schools minister, said: “It has never been more important for young people to learn a foreign language than now.

英国教育部国务大臣尼克·吉布说:“现在对年轻人来说,学习外语比以往时候都更加重要。”

“An outward looking global nation needs a new generation of young people comfortable with the language and culture of our overseas trading partners.”

“一个开放的国际化国家需要新一代的年轻人熟悉海外贸易伙伴的语言和文化。”

source:中国日报双语新闻

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