• BONUM Staff

Language Learning Outcomes are the Worst... or are they?


Last year, in a press release Fluent City CEO James Rohrbach was quoted stating, "The global language market is $100B a year – and yet language learning outcomes are some of the worst of any discipline.” But are they really?


As an industry there is little published research around language learning outcomes at the postsecondary level or even a consensus on the definition of success.

Results of a recent 10 year longitudinal study indicate the average completion rate for international students in U.S. postsecondary English language programs was 40%, which is consistent with the general U.S. higher education graduation rate (Colon, 2020).


Go a little further and the data indicate there is a statistically significant difference of -7.17 in the completion rate of postsecondary English language programs by gender. Female international students in U.S. postsecondary English language programs are completing programs at a higher rate than males.


When compared to the general U.S. higher education graduation rate, the international female completion rate is consistent with their American counterparts at 44%. However, the male rate is slightly lower at 33% (35% for U.S. higher education).

'The global language market is $100B a year- and language learning outcomes are comparable, except slightly lower for males' is a more accurate statement based on this data. In lieu of creating a negative dialog- lets collect data, conduct research, and share results. When we do we can elevate our industry and our individual companies.