Estonia ranks high for English proficiency
EF Education First released today the 5th annual edition of EF English Proficiency Index (EF EPI), the world's largest ranking of countries by English skills. Estonia occupies a respectable seventh place out of 70 countries and is classified as having a very high proficiency level.
Sweden ranks first for English skills, closely followed by the Netherlands and other other Nordic countries – Denmark, Norway and Finland. Slovenia is sixth and Estonia seventh. It's the Arab countries and Cambodia that come in last.
Compared to last year, both Estonia's ranking and total score have improved. Yet it is still lacking from repeating its best ever fourth place.
Estonia stands out in the index for the slightly better language skills of the male population. In other countries, women tend to have the upper hand when it comes to speaking English.
This fifth edition of the EF English Proficiency Index (EF EPI) ranks 70 countries and territories based on test data from more than 910,000 adults who took online English tests in 2014.
According to the test results, the gap between the highest and lowest proficiency countries has widened, with the top-ranked country, Sweden, a full 33 points above Libya, in last place.
Worldwide, English proficiency levels are highest among young adults aged 18-20. However, on a global level, the difference in English ability between age cohorts is extremely small for adults under 30. On a national level, the story is quite different, with some countries showing stark generational differences and others almost none.