A-level Results 2018: Chinese A-level overtakes German for first time

More pupils studied Chinese A-level than German for the first time this year.

According to a breakdown of entries for modern foreign languages released by the Joint Council for Qualifications (JCQ), a total of 3,334 pupils in the UK opted to take an A-level in Chinese – an increase of 8.6 per cent from last year.

However, German has continued its steady decline with just 3,058 studying the A-level, a 17 per cent decrease from last year.

In September 2015, then-chancellor George Osborne announced £10 million funding for the Mandarin Excellence Programme which aimed to get 5,000 more pupils studying the language by 2020.

However, Amanda Spielman, head of Ofsted, said last month during a radio interview that it was more helpful for pupils to learn European languages before attempting Mandarin.

There was an overall 3.1 per cent increase in pupils taking  ‘other modern languages’, which includes all A-level languages apart from French, German, Spanish, Irish and Welsh.

French remains the most popular language choice at A-level, with 8,713 pupils studying it in the UK this year, although this still represents a fall of almost eight per cent on last year.

Entries for A-level Chinese 

2012: 3,424

2013: 3,326

2014: 3,113

2015: 3,099

2016: 2,859

2017: 3,070

2018: 3,334

 

Entries for A-level German

2012: 4,773

2013: 4,242

2014: 4,187

2015: 4,009

2016: 3,842

2017: 3,663

2018: 3,058