New English language assessment tool for businesses

Wednesday 02 April 2014

Aptis is a comprehensive English language assessment tool that can be used by organisations and institutions to assess the English language levels of their employees, students, candidates or teachers, and to identify areas that require training for improvement. The tool is owned and developed by the British Council, an organisation with more than 70 years of experience in English assessment. 

Aptis was recently launched in Sri Lanka to support the country’s aspirations to invest in human capital and to increase the overall levels of English language in the country. In view of understanding the current levels of English in the market, the British Council in Sri Lanka commissioned and conducted a benchmarking exercise across six industries to foster a framework for English language development work. 

This exercise used representative companies from six different industries: Banking, Telecommunications, Tourism and Hospitality, Manufacturing and Retail, Insurance, and BPO, KPO and IT.

The focus of the exercise was to share information on the level of English required by specific job roles across these industries. This information when combined with assessment and training helps industries in Sri Lanka to develop their human capital effectively. 

To highlight the need for a structured approach to English language development and effective English language assessment in the country, the British Council recently conducted an English language forum which was attended by over 70 participants from the public, private, and NGO sectors across all industries.

The forum discussed the role of English language and its importance for a country, for industries, for individuals, and how a structured approach can be taken for English language development work. Within this mandate, the discussion also looked at how assessment plays a critical role in setting that structure, and the relevance of Aptis. 

Harriet Gardner, Country Exams Manager Sri Lanka, said: “One of the exciting things about Aptis in Sri Lanka is that it can help industries to set standards of English for school leavers, higher education and corporate roles, and in turn improve the overall level of English in the country. While focusing on supporting these ambitions, we can create opportunities and help individuals and organisations gain a competitive edge.”

Currently, in catering to the growing demand for English in educational contexts, an additional variant of Aptis has been developed – Aptis for Teachers. Sri Lanka has been quick to recognise its benefit with an institution being the first globally to select it as a tool to assess and develop its pool of teachers across the island. 

About the British Council

The British Council is the UK’s international organisation for educational opportunities and cultural relations. We create international opportunities for the people of the UK and other countries and build trust between them worldwide. 

We work in more than 100 countries and our 7000 staff – including 2000 teachers – work with thousands of professionals and policy makers and millions of young people every year by teaching English, sharing the Arts and delivering education and society programmes.

You can keep in touch with the British Council through Twitter and Facebook.