Gå til indhold

Joint effort to strengthen foreign language education

January 17, 2011
The Minister for Science, Technology and Innovation and the Minister for Education have established a taskforce aimed at presenting a strategy for how Denmark can improve foreign language education from school right through to university.

All have been concerned that subjects like French, Italian and Russian have been losing ground in the education system in recent years.

There is a fear that fewer students are choosing optional language subjects at school and uptake for language-oriented courses at teacher training colleges and at universities is also declining.

Increased globalisation means that foreign languages are more relevant than before. For example, economic growth in countries such as China, India and Brazil will also increase demand for our multilingual skills.

A survey of foreign language education in Denmark is necessary to find out how and when language education can be improved.

– In a globalised world we must increase cross-border cooperation. For a small country like Denmark it is crucial that we have the necessary language skills – and English is not always enough. Businesses need employees with good language competences. We must educate graduates with qualifications that match the needs of society, says Science Minister Charlotte-Sahl Madsen.
– With this taskforce for foreign language education in Denmark, we wish to make a joint strategy from primary to university level. There are different demands for language competences today and we must therefore review if language education lives up to the needs placed on us by the future labour market and education. I look forward to hearing the task force's recommendations, says Education Minister Tina Nedergaard.

The taskforce is comprised of the following eight members:

  • Task force chairperson: Bodil Due, PhD; chief consultant; former Dean of Faculty of Humanities, Aarhus University
  • Klaus Majgaard, managing director at Department for Children and Youth, Odense Municipality; chairman of Børne- og Kulturchef Foreningen (Children and Culture Managers Association)
  • Dorte Fristrup, vice-principal at Horsens hf and VUC; principal at Aarhus Statsgymnasium (as of February 1st)
  • Karsten Gramkow, associate professor PhD in English, University College Nordjylland; vice chair examiner for English in teacher education degree.
  • Kirsten Holmgaard, manager for Mercantec business academy in Viborg; board member at Dania business academy.
  • Ingemai Larsen, associate professor and director of studies at the Department of English, Germanic and Romance Studies, University of Copenhagen.
  • Cecilie M. Hansen, General Manager, A.P. Moller – Mærsk.
  • Steinar Nybøle, PhD; head of the Norwegian Centre for Foreign languages in Education

The task force will present recommendations for a foreign languages education strategy in the summer 2011.

Science Minister Charlotte Sahl-Madsen can be contacted through press officer Charlotte Holst, tel: +45 2211 0200 or email: chhh@vtu.dk.

Ministry of Education: press officer Ingeborg Nielsen, tel: +45 3392 5009 or email: ien@uvm.dk.

Document Actions