Language Skills


Bonjour, ca va? Is this all you can remember from GCSE French? If so, you and many UK graduates could be in trouble. According to specialist multilingual recruiter Euro London Appointments, UK graduates risk falling massively behind in the global economy because of their lack of language skills.

However, modern European languages are only part of the picture as there is also a real shortage of Asian and emerging market language skills.

Without these skills, graduates - particularly in the finance, marketing and IT sectors - will find it difficult to secure the plum roles that offer an attractive salary as well as lots of opportunities for international travel

Julie Ferry, The Guardian, Saturday 20 January 2007


So, if you want to brush up your language skills – or learn another language from scratch – where should you start? Below are some useful information resources for Learning another Language

In Canterbury and Kent

Be suspicious of native-born Esperanto speakers.

Coup de grâce - French for lawnmower.

If English is supposed to be the lingua franca, how come there’s no word in English for lingua franca?

There are hundreds of languages in the world, but a smile speaks them all.

Jennifer Doubleday

If you talk to a man in a language he understands, that goes to his head. If you talk to him in his own language, that goes to his heart. 

Nelson Mandela

It is of interest to note that while some dolphins are reported to have learned English - up to fifty words used in correct context - no human being has been reported to have learned dolphinese.

Carl Sagan

Through learning language, we learn about culture.
Through learning about culture, we learn respect for others.
Through learning respect for others, we can hope for peace.

Un homme qui parle trois langues est trilingue.
Un homme qui parle deux langues est bilingue.
Un homme qui ne parle qu'une langue est anglais.
A man who speaks three language is trilingual.
A man who speaks two languages is bilingual.
A man who speaks only one language is English.

Claude Gagnière

General information and links

Some course providers:

Links to specific languages

Self-study and online learning


Now continue to our other skills pages or see our modern langages careers page


Last fully updated 2011