Importance Of English As A Second Language

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Why is using second language effectively a more suitable goal for language learners as learning goal?
First of all, English is becoming an international language nowadays, and it is shared by people all over the world instead of only belonging to those who are native speakers of English. Swann (2001) classifies languages into four groups, which are called local languages or peripheral languages, central languages, super-central languages, and hyper-central languages respectively. English, in fact, is the only hyper-central language among all kinds of languages as it is spoken in almost any country for various purposes and it is taught in most countries all over the world. As a result, English has become a global lingual franca, not only used
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As a result, the communication are more often performed by non-native speakers and non-native speakers instead of native speakers and non-native speakers. As Graddol (1999) claims that the proportion of native speakers is declining although the number of native speakers is increasing gradually. However, the increasing number of the native speaker is far more less than that of non-native speakers. Also, according to him, the international status of English is changing. He finds that English was taught as a foreign language in Europe in the past, but it now plays a more important role and is taught as a second language. Therefore, people coming from different countries tend to use English to communicate with each other. For example, when people are traveling abroad, they will usually try to start a conversation with others in English. Their conversation may not involve a native speaker at all, so native speaker emulation does not matter at all for them. Sometimes, involving a native speaker may ruin their conversation actually since it is often easier for second language users to talk with fellow second language users than to native speakers. As Cook (2014) exemplifies that in some trade meetings, second language users can often make their ideas more easily understood compared to native speakers who did not adapt their speech to second language users. Seidlofer (2004) also argues that misunderstandings are…show more content…
According to Widdowson (1983), in English for specific purpose, “purpose” refers to the eventual practical use to which the language users will put the target language into practice in order to successfully perform the academic and occupational aims. That is to say, English for specific purpose focuses on occupation or profession, such as technical English, scientific English, English for medical professions, for waiters, for tourism, etc. For example, for clerk and merchants, their goal for learning a second language always focus on commercial language in order to draw up bills of loading or to conduct business correspondence. For hotel keeper or waiter, the goal of learning a second language always focus on hotel colloquial in order to communicate with the visitors coming from other countries. For students, the internal classroom goals are their lives within the classroom, such as communicating with their classmates with the target language or passing the exams, but their external goals are related to the use of the target language outside the classroom, such as traveling or studying in other countries. Therefore, the learning goal of different kinds of second language learners is always not the same and very different from being native like. Their goal is to be successful second language user. As Cook (2014) suggests that most public examination systems, such as
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