The British Council, in partnership with Manipal City and Guilds, Trinity College London and
the National Skills Development Agency, are proud to launch a report that explores the role of
English in the NSQF, with a particular focus on English as a Skill for Employability for entry
level and semi-skilled employment in the sectors of Healthcare, Hospitality and Construction.
The report also explores the facilitating role that the Common European Reference Framework
(CEFR) for language can play for all languages in India, in the context of the NSQF, to
improve the quality of language training and facilitate better progression in learning.
With two thirds of the region’s population below 30 years of age, employment and
employability is a top developmental priority for countries in the region. Many policy making
bodies view English as a key skill and one that would go a long way in improving the
opportunities and employability of the large and growing mass of youth in South Asia, in a fast
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In India, creating and formally adopting a national framework of occupational standards and
qualifications through the National Skills Qualifications Framework (NSQF) is an important first
step to improving employability skills, up-skilling Indian workers and ensuring that the quality of
technical and vocational education and training (TVET) is standardised. This also ties in to the
need for meaningful recognition of achievement of skills and knowledge, important for
employment and progression (vertical or lateral) of workers and aspirants.
The research report ‘English Skills for Employability – Setting Common Standards’ is
authored by Emma-Sue Prince, Director of Unimenta and S Manish Singh, Managing Director
of PROGILENCE Capability Development Pvt. Ltd. The report was launched recently at the
British Council in New Delhi.
Gill Caldicott Director Operations for India, British Council said, ‘Creating an entry level
on the existing Common European Framework of Reference for Languages, or an Indian
equivalent, would provide a great incentive for aspiring language learners, particularly adults in
the workplace. The British Council looks forward to collaborating further with the National Skills
Development Agency, Trinity College London and Manipal City & Guilds to identify priorities
emerging from the research report and to agree how they can best be implemented.’
John Yates, CEO, Manipal City & Guilds said, ‘Employability is a vital concept for India. It
means a person’s ability to get a job, keep that job, and move on to their next job. Language
and communication skills are a key foundation to employability. This important report
recommends actions we can take collectively to build an India-specific framework for language
and identifies a new entry level for English language skills that will be of great benefit to many
industry sectors, employers and those looking for work.’
Speaking on the occasion Sarah Deverall, Director Examinations Services for India,
British Council said, “The proposed creation of a Common Indian Framework of Reference
for Languages could enable standards to be set for language proficiency in English and Indian
languages which could then be used by employers to benchmark language and
communication skills and by training providers to design and deliver curricula and assessment
bodies to develop assessment tools and approaches.”