International Educator - May/June 2016 - 77

ucation enrollment. While the study abroad
participation has climbed in recent decades,
the relatively low percentage of U.S. students
who choose to study abroad may reflect lack
of interest, lack of preparation and skills, or
both. Compared to the United States, where
virtually all students study foreign languages,
10 percent of all EU students study abroad,
many through the Erasmus program, and the
percentage of globally mobile students from
Central Asia and Sub-Saharan Africa is 7.5
percent and 3.5 percent respectively.
The challenge is to create a campus environment that prepares and enables U.S.
students who are planning, or even considering, study abroad to maximize their
international experience.
In addition, as only 10 percent of U.S. students currently study abroad, it is essential
that our campuses provide an environment
that will offer those local students who do
not study abroad an opportunity to develop
the awareness, mindset, and skills essential
for a global citizen and for success in the globalized workplace.

The Impact of the U.S.
Foreign Language Deficit on
International Students in the
United States
Students from around the world-some
with limited English proficiency-come to
our campuses.

According to Open Doors, China, India,
South Korea, and Saudi Arabia are the leading countries of origin for international
students in the United States. According to
the English First English Proficiency Index,
China ranks "low proficiency," number 37
out of 63 countries. South Korea and India
rank "moderate proficiency," number 24 and
number 25, respectively, out of 63 countries,
and Saudi Arabia ranks "very low proficiency," number 59 out of 63 countries.3
The implications for U.S. campuses welcoming these students are significant-as
students from three of the leading countries of origin for international students in
the United States may have low levels of

English language proficiency. Courses specifically designed to empower these newly
arrived students to achieve academic success and to effectively navigate the campus
and local environment are needed, as are
staff to facilitate the linguistic, as well as the
academic and cultural, transition.
It is essential to note that the lack of foreign language skills among U.S. students and
of English-language skills among international students on U.S. campuses does not foster
cross-cultural learning and relationships. 
The challenge is to create a campus
environment that welcomes international
students and empowers them to make the
most of their study abroad experience in the
United States.

Foreign Language Skills
as a Global Competency in
International Education
The Extent of the U.S. Foreign Language
Deficit: Although it is easy to think of English
as the global lingua franca, it is necessary
to remember that 75 percent of the world's
population does not speak English.

In the United States, a Gallup Poll found that
25 percent of Americans reported being able
to hold a conversation in a language other
than English. However, when recent immigrants and other heritage language speakers
are deducted, the number of Americans able
to converse in a second language is approximately 10 percent.4
When compared with Europe, where 56
percent of adults report that they are able
to hold a conversation in a second language,
28 percent report that they are able to converse in additional languages, and 11 percent
report the ability to converse in two additional languages, Americans are clearly at a
disadvantage in the globalized world and the
global marketplace.5
Furthermore, when virtually all students in the European Union (EU) and in
many other areas of the world study additional languages, according to the American
Council on the Teaching of Foreign Languages (ACTFL), only 18.5 percent of U.S.

K-12 students study a foreign language,6 and
according to the Modern Language Association (MLA), only 8.1 percent of college and
university students are enrolled in a course
in a language other than English.7
Even as globalization has increased, the
percentage of U.S. college and university
students studying foreign languages on U.S.
campuses has decreased from 16 percent in
1960 to 8.1 percent today.8

Foreign Language Skills as a
Global Competency
The call for increased attention to the development of foreign language skills as a
global competency is not limited to foreign
language educators, with concerns voiced
by a wide range of international education
stakeholders.
According to the ACTFL Global Competence Position Statement, "the ability to
communicate with respect and cultural understanding in more than one language is
an essential element of global competence." 9
The Many Languages One World
(MLOW) Essay Contest and Global Youth
Forum, sponsored by the United Nations
Academic Impact and ELS Educational
Services, was launched in 2013, with events
held in 2014 and 2015, for the purpose of
promoting "multilingualism and the continued study of the six official languages of
the United Nations: Arabic, Chinese, English, French, Russian, and Spanish." 10 The
MLOW Global Youth Forum culminates
with an opportunity for students to present
in their second, target language on a UNrelated theme at the UN General Assembly.
In terms of the lack of foreign language skills
among U.S. students, it is noteworthy that
among the 70 MLOW 2015 winners, only
five were from the United States.
In World Languages are Global Competencies, the Asia Society describes the need
to transcend local and practical needs and
to envision foreign language learning as a
global competence.11
In National Education Association Global Competence is a 21st Century Imperative,
"proficiency in foreign languages" is one of
M AY + J U N E .16 INTERNATIONAL EDUCATOR

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Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of International Educator - May/June 2016

Toward a Better World
Tech Abroad
The University of Virginia Seeks to Emulate Its Founder
Frontlines
In Brief
Global Spotlight
Education Abroad
Foreign Student Affairs
International Enrollment
View From Out Here
Forum
In Focus
International Educator - May/June 2016 - BB1
International Educator - May/June 2016 - BB2
International Educator - May/June 2016 - Cover1
International Educator - May/June 2016 - Cover2
International Educator - May/June 2016 - 1
International Educator - May/June 2016 - 2
International Educator - May/June 2016 - 3
International Educator - May/June 2016 - Frontlines
International Educator - May/June 2016 - 5
International Educator - May/June 2016 - 6
International Educator - May/June 2016 - 7
International Educator - May/June 2016 - In Brief
International Educator - May/June 2016 - 9
International Educator - May/June 2016 - 10
International Educator - May/June 2016 - 11
International Educator - May/June 2016 - 12
International Educator - May/June 2016 - 13
International Educator - May/June 2016 - 14
International Educator - May/June 2016 - 15
International Educator - May/June 2016 - Global Spotlight
International Educator - May/June 2016 - 17
International Educator - May/June 2016 - 18
International Educator - May/June 2016 - 19
International Educator - May/June 2016 - Toward a Better World
International Educator - May/June 2016 - 21
International Educator - May/June 2016 - 22
International Educator - May/June 2016 - 23
International Educator - May/June 2016 - 24
International Educator - May/June 2016 - 25
International Educator - May/June 2016 - 26
International Educator - May/June 2016 - 27
International Educator - May/June 2016 - 28
International Educator - May/June 2016 - 29
International Educator - May/June 2016 - 30
International Educator - May/June 2016 - 31
International Educator - May/June 2016 - 32
International Educator - May/June 2016 - 33
International Educator - May/June 2016 - 34
International Educator - May/June 2016 - 35
International Educator - May/June 2016 - Tech Abroad
International Educator - May/June 2016 - 37
International Educator - May/June 2016 - 38
International Educator - May/June 2016 - 39
International Educator - May/June 2016 - 40
International Educator - May/June 2016 - 41
International Educator - May/June 2016 - 42
International Educator - May/June 2016 - 43
International Educator - May/June 2016 - 44
International Educator - May/June 2016 - 45
International Educator - May/June 2016 - The University of Virginia Seeks to Emulate Its Founder
International Educator - May/June 2016 - 47
International Educator - May/June 2016 - 48
International Educator - May/June 2016 - 49
International Educator - May/June 2016 - 50
International Educator - May/June 2016 - 51
International Educator - May/June 2016 - 52
International Educator - May/June 2016 - 53
International Educator - May/June 2016 - 54
International Educator - May/June 2016 - 55
International Educator - May/June 2016 - Education Abroad
International Educator - May/June 2016 - 57
International Educator - May/June 2016 - 58
International Educator - May/June 2016 - 59
International Educator - May/June 2016 - 60
International Educator - May/June 2016 - 61
International Educator - May/June 2016 - Foreign Student Affairs
International Educator - May/June 2016 - 63
International Educator - May/June 2016 - 64
International Educator - May/June 2016 - 65
International Educator - May/June 2016 - International Enrollment
International Educator - May/June 2016 - 67
International Educator - May/June 2016 - 68
International Educator - May/June 2016 - 69
International Educator - May/June 2016 - 70
International Educator - May/June 2016 - 71
International Educator - May/June 2016 - View From Out Here
International Educator - May/June 2016 - 73
International Educator - May/June 2016 - 74
International Educator - May/June 2016 - 75
International Educator - May/June 2016 - Forum
International Educator - May/June 2016 - 77
International Educator - May/June 2016 - 78
International Educator - May/June 2016 - 79
International Educator - May/June 2016 - In Focus
International Educator - May/June 2016 - Cover3
International Educator - May/June 2016 - Cover4
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