Author: Katrina Rachmawaty

Can you imagine mastering one of the most influential languages? English has been the world’s most widespread language, spoken by 101 countries. With about 1.35 billion people who speak English, the number of information, opinion, facts, resources, and secrets that humans could exchange altogether would be enough to help us discover just about anything. Indeed, English could be feared with only these potentials alone. Now, think about how many doors of opportunity English would dare to open?

English Surrounds Us

Do you realize that bit by bit, English has advanced its way into your life? Take a quick example, the mobile’s virtual assistants such as Apple’s Siri, Samsung’s Bixby, Microsoft’s Cortana, Google’s Assistants, or even Amazon’s Alexa in your device all have English as their supported language. According to International Federation of the Phonographic Industry (IFPI) in 2018, music and movies that you’ve seen and heard are most likely English. Apparently, the USA is the number one music market in 2018 and also one of the top-10 music markets in the world. Lyons (2020) said that America has the most market for music with over 5.9 billion dollars. Meanwhile, Movie Production Countries stated that the U.S. has the most movie production with also the most income from the worldwide box office.

Social media has also been one of the major details that English revolves in. For instance, teenagers nowadays in Indonesia would use some of the English phrases as their slang language to be posted on their social media accounts. According to some research, there are positive trends in using English among Indonesian youngsters, especially on the internet. For instance, the words ‘u’ (you), ‘tq/thx’ (thank you/thanks), ‘OMG” (Oh My God), and ‘otw’ (on the way) are often used by Indonesian youngsters. These prove how English has evolved around the world and how it’s going to evolve in our country sooner rather than later. Altogether, we know that English has a broad audience around the world; therefore people would somehow take advantage of English to reach wider audiences. This idea definitely supports English’s potential and revolution.

English offers doors of opportunity

Higher academics had always been a journey to be achieved, especially with the magic of scholarships. It is, after all, a value that impacts a lot on a person’s future career. By enhancing our English competence, we have a higher chance to have all opportunities in boosting our education, chance in getting a scholarships, and successful careers. You could say it’s a 3-in-1 satisfaction. Well, English is just the fundamental basics; you will still need a qualification of your English skill to show that you are competent.

There are a bunch of English qualifications available; however, the most widely recognized would be TOEFL and IELTS. TOEFL (Test of English as a Foreign Language) is acknowledged by 11,000 universities in 150 countries around the world. Meanwhile, IELTS (International English Language Testing System) is entrusted by 11,000 organizations, which includes universities, employers, and other authorities. These qualifications would be perfect for those who dream of applying to school from abroad. Moreover; there are also universities in Indonesia that need TOEFL and IELTS scores as an application requirement. For example, the Institute Technology of Bandung (ITB) requires students to own TOEFL or IELTS scores for admission to their master’s degree program.

Simultaneously, scholarships from overseas universities also require language proficiency qualifications. Scholarships from Indonesia also require TOEFL or IELTS scores as one of the conditions. For instance, Universitas Gajah Mada (UGM) requires a minimum of 400 scores in TOEFL ITP to apply for a master’s degree scholarship. Top universities such as the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) and Columbia University also have scholarships that require the applicant to have IBT TOEFL. In addition, A  Government’s international exchange program such as Fulbright Program (US), Chevening Scholarships (UK), Endeavour Awards (Australia), and even scholarships in Asia such as the Monbukagakusho scholarship made by Japan’s government required TOEFL or IELTS.

Meanwhile, future careers would also be supported with TOEFL IBT. It would help you in three ways which are your Curriculum Vitae (CV), a valuable guarantee of your English proficiency, and an asset to different careers. For instance, scientists and doctors would need a high level of English proficiency to speak greatly with patience and read a huge amount of scientific research, especially if you’re working internationally. Your CV would meet the international standard which will allow a huge amount of jobs feasibility. And, a guarantee of your English proficiency would also be significant for immigration demand, such as stay or work visas and medical agencies for professional certifications.

Open your mind to English

Essentially, humans are made to care about their surroundings in life. Every incident was made to be known and learned. Knowledge such as politics, economics, social and history is indeed important for a person to obtain an open-minded mind. English plays a big role in each of this knowledge.  One of these would be political science. According to Blais (2017), English has become the ‘Lingua Franca of political science. Almost all of the research he read is in English.

Meanwhile, according to Swaan (2004), English has played a big part in social science considering the worldwide social science community could only be available with the help of English as a universal forum. English also would impact historical knowledge with the number of movies and pieces of literature spread around the world. It’s known that literature always offers different perspectives based on the culture that embodies the society’s existence. Therefore, by gathering all of this knowledge, we can have a more open-minded viewpoint while facing the world.

Long story short, English is one key that is essential for communication. It is understood by a lot of people worldwide. Therefore, it has a great deal of potential for many aspects of life. English could give you a nondiscriminatory perspective, successful careers, higher education, beneficial scholarships, and literature value that would charm their way into you in seconds. Counting all of that would mean, English is a 5-in1 package of success. Without a doubt, English’s impact on a person’s life with its potential is astounding. On a brighter note, you can also take advantage of these indisputable potentials and use them to be better in the future.

I am a young generation who cares about literacy! This article was written as part of the 2021 EF Literacy Day Competition:


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