Surveying the English language across China

Rining Wei, Jinzhi Su

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

56 Citations (Scopus)


Although the Survey of Language Situation in China, Zhongguo yuyan wenzi shiyong qingkuang diaocha), involving 475,000 respondents was conducted over a decade ago, it can still provide insights into the sociolinguistic situation of English in the world's most populous country. The present paper analyses data from this survey concerning respondents' (1) use of English, (2) English reading proficiency, (3) English spoken proficiency, and (4) attitudes towards foreign language-medium instruction at primary and secondary schools, with special reference to seven major cities; Beijing, Shanghai, Tianjin, Guangzhou, Shenzhen, Chongqing and Dalian. Future research directions include collecting more comprehensive data concerning English and/or through approaches more objective than self-reporting. One policy implication is that government departments might consider formulating a more coherent language policy for English-medium instruction at pre-tertiary level.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)175-189
Number of pages15
JournalWorld Englishes
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jun 2015

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