Have you ever wondered what the benefits are of learning English? English is one of the most used languages in the world. But do you know how many countries speak English as a primary (first) language? Here’s a quick poll:
English is an official language of culture, business and economics. So, learning this language can provide you with opportunities to travel, live in or do business with an English-speaking country. The IQ Blog team have brainstormed the top 5 reasons to gain English skills, so that you don’t have to! We’ve also mapped out the top 6 countries with the largest number of English speakers, according to their population.
Firstly, let’s look at the top reasons to study English. 1. English is the 3rd most spoken language in the world
(based on the amount of native speakers, not speakers of English as a second language).
The answer to our poll: 'How many countries speak English as a primary language?' is 35!
It is also true that everywhere you go, you’ll find someone who speaks English.
2. Learning English allows you to enjoy a variety of entertainment
Popular culture (media, films, shows and music) is still dominated by American and British English. We love to talk about our favourite movies or sing along to our favourite music and learning English allows us to do both!
3. Being bilingual enhances your career opportunities These days many companies require their employees to be bilingual, with English as a first or second language. Since English is spoken all over the world, people who are bilingual have a strong advantage in the job market. Today, the top five industries hiring bilingual employees are:
It is also worth mentioning that working for a multinational company often involves that thing we all love – travel! So there is more than one benefit to being bilingual. 4. English allows you to study or settle in another country Have you ever wanted to study in a different country? Understanding and communicating in general English is useful but to study at an English university, you’ll need some extra skills! IQ Global specialises in Exam Preparation for Cambridge FCE, CAE and IELTS, which is essential for entry into any university in the UK or USA. Look at our blog, Top Reasons to Study Abroad for more information on how we can help you with Exam Preparation.
5. English can help you make new friends.
We have looked at some academic and professional reasons to learn English. How can it help you to make new friends? Apart from the obvious communication benefits, what is the common 'currency' in a mixed nationality group? That's correct - the common language (currency) is always English in a mixed nationality group.
So English gives you the opportunity to make friends from different countries because you must communicate with them in this common language.
Now let's take a look the top 6 countries with the most English speakers as a first or second language. The United States of America It is not surprising that the world’s largest English-speaking country is the United States of America. Approximately 225 million people speak English as a first language and 43 million as a second language. In total, there are approximately 268 million people who speak English in the USA.
India The next country on our list is India. There are around 125 million people in India who speak English as either first or second language. Most people speak English as their second language with Hindi as their first. Pakistan This might surprise you - Pakistan is the third country on our list. There are around 94.5 million English speakers in Pakistan and 50% of the total population speak English as their second language. The Philippines Although the number of people who speak English as their first language is only around 35,000, most Filipinos speak English as a second language. About 90% of the total population speak English! Nigeria Nigeria has a large population of 210 million and 53% of Nigerians speak some level of English (around 115 million people).
The United Kingdom Our list would not be complete without mentioning the United Kingdom. The UK is very multicultural but 98% of people speak English. This means 59.5 million people out of a total population of 67 million.
Have a look at the IQ Global Culture Course to learn fascinating facts and information about real life in the UK.
So if you have ever wondered whether learning English would be a good idea, we hope this blog has helped you decide ‘YES’!
At IQ Global, we aim to make English useful in real life, so whether you are planning to visit an English-speaking country, study or settle in one, start your journey towards those goals with us today with a course like English Voice. Want to get an idea of what this course is all about?
We also have an English Voice taster at each level, absolutely free. Just sign up to the website to access this amazing free content and try before you buy!
We hope you have enjoyed this blog. As always, you will progress more by reading, listening and practising your English so make sure you check out IQ Global for free resources and our YouTube channel. See you next time!