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Study: Malaysia has 3rd Highest English Proficiency in Asia Behind Singapore & Philippines


Feat Image Malaysia English Ranking
Source: MalaysianFlavours & HCAMag

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Malaysia’s English proficiency is among the highest in the world, particularly in Asia, according to the latest edition of the EF English Proficiency Index (EF EPI) survey.

The index surveyed and placed 113 non-native English-speaking countries into 5 proficiency bands from Very High to Very Low, with Malaysia categorised as the second highest tier of ‘High Proficiency’.

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In terms of rankings, Malaysia has the 3rd highest English proficiency in Asia according to the survey, behind Singapore at first and the Philippines at second.

Globally, Malaysia places 25th in the index. As for the EF EPI 2023 City scores, only Kuala Lumpur made it to the list and similarly to the countries’ rankings, our nation’s capital is categorised as ‘High Proficiency’.

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For reference, Malaysia scored 568 in the 2023 index, dropping 6 points from last year, while Kuala Lumpur scored 564. The global average is 502.

Interestingly, the 2023 EF EPI found that the top region with the highest English proficiency in Malaysia is Perak (587), while the top city is Kuantan (603). Meanwhile, the top age group in our country is 26-30 with an average score of 582.

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As for the index as a whole, the Netherlands ranked first in the index with a score of 647, followed by Singapore (631), Austria (616), Denmark (615) and Norway (614).

In the study’s executive summary, EF observed that South and Southeast Asia have seen a slight drop in their level of English on average, although many countries in the region have stable or modestly rising scores.

The EF EPI is based on test scores from the EF Standard English Test (EF SET), an online, adaptive English test of reading and listening skills. It is a standardised, objectively scored test designed to classify test takers’ language abilities into one of the six levels established by the Common European Framework of Reference (CEFR).

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This latest edition of the EF EPI is based on test data from more than 2,200,000 test takers around the world who took the EF SET in 2022.

So, what do you guys think of Malaysia’s placement in the survey? Share your thoughts with us in the comments.


Also read: PMX Wants Students’ Proficiency in English to Improve in 2024 Without Compromising the Mastery in BM

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