English proficiency increases in France

English proficiency in France is increasing according to new data from the world’s most popular high stakes English language test, IELTS (the International English Language Testing System).

The results achieved by French IELTS test takers in 2011 show that proficiency in two areas of English language – writing and speaking – has increased since 2010.

The IELTS partners said the results reinforced IELTS as the world’s premier English language test.

“Results from 2011 show French test takers are committed to English studies and improving their proficiency in the language,” British Council’s Helga Stellmacher said.

“More and more people each year in France are choosing to sit IELTS and increase their global education and employment opportunities. IELTS results can open doors for people to study in the USA, UK or Australia, or obtain a visa to live and work in places such as Canada or Australia,” John Belleville, IDP: IELTS Australia, added.

“We undergo an extensive range of test research and test development so candidates and recognising organisations alike can be confident all results are accurate and reliable. IELTS is designed to encourage test takers to enhance their real world English effectively,” Cambridge ESOL’s Mike Milanovic concluded.

The average IELTS score in France increased from 6.7 to 6.8 on the IELTS scale from 1 to 9 in 2011. The biggest improvement was in speaking skills, which increased to an average score of 6.8, and was the strongest competency amongst people in France taking the test in 2011. Data is taken from test takers who sat the IELTS Academic test.

There are eight IELTS test centres located across France including Bordeaux, Lyon and Strasbourg.

IELTS test results are requested by more than 7,000 education institutions, governments and employers around the globe to provide accurate and reliable measurement of English language proficiency.

More than 1.7 million IELTS tests were sat in 2011, a 12% increase compared to 2010.