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ERIC Number: EJ896194
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2010
Pages: 21
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 37
ISSN: ISSN-1534-8458
Language Skills and Status Attainment in Taiwan
Tsai, Shu-Ling
Journal of Language, Identity, and Education, v9 n4 p229-249 2010
This article addresses the importance of language underlying the stratification process in Taiwan within the context of globalization. Specifically, I ask if one's language skills may serve as a key to getting ahead. The Taiwanese government has imposed Mandarin as the official language since 1945 and introduced English courses into compulsory education since 1968. Using panel data, I examine to what extent one's levels of proficiency in various languages help explain the variation in socioeconomic status that is not explained by educational attainment. The results indicate that although education is a major mechanism of socioeconomic achievements, both English- and Mandarin-proficiency make their respective significant contributions as well. More important, I find that people in Taiwan may advance their socioeconomic status more with fluency in English than with fluency in Mandarin. This case study documents how a global language like English may play a role in an East Asian society like Taiwan. (Contains 8 tables and 3 footnotes.)
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Taiwan