Leathes Report (1918)

This report argued the importance of modern languages for Britain's schools and universities. It was produced by a committee chaired by Sir Stanley Mordaunt Leathes (1861-1938) who was an economist, historian and senior Civil Service administrator.

The complete report is shown in this single web page. You can scroll through it or use the following links to go to the various sections.

A. Work of the Committee (page 2)
B. History of the study of modern languages in Great Britain (2)
C. Neglect of modern studies (7)
D. The value of modern studies (8)
E. Relative importance of the several languages (18)
F. Means of instruction (22)
G. Supply and training of teachers for schools (52)
H. Method (53)
I. Examinations (57)
J. Conclusions and recommendations (59)
Reservations (67)
Appendices (74)

Incidentally, the report was printed in small type on large pages (21x34cm) with around 1,000 words to a page, so it is longer than it appears from the page numbers.

The Appendices (other than the tables) were printed in two columns to a page. I have not reproduced that arrangement here: in one case (page 80) this has meant a footnote appearing in the middle of the page (ie at the foot of the first column).

See also

Modern Languages (1956) Ministry of Education Pamphlet No. 29.

Modern Languages in Comprehensive Schools (1977) HMI Series Matters for Discussion No. 3.

Modern Languages in Further Education (1980) HMI Series Matters for Discussion No. 12).

Modern foreign languages (1987) HMI Series Curriculum Matters No. 8.

The text of the 1918 Leathes Report was prepared by Derek Gillard and uploaded on 15 May 2022.

Leathes Report (1918)
Report of the Committee appointed by the Prime Minister to enquire into the Position of Modern Languages in the Educational System of Great Britain

London: HM Stationery Office

[title page]









Presented to Parliament by Command of His Majesty


To be purchased, through any Bookseller or directly from
HIS MAJESTY'S STATIONERY OFFICE at the following addresses:


[Cd. 9036.] Price 9d Net.

[page iii]


Analysis of the Reportiv
Terms of Reference and List of Members1

A. Work of the Committee

B. History of the Study of Modern Languages in Great Britain

C. Neglect of Modern Studies

D. The Value of Modern Studies
(i) Business Value of Modern Studies9
(ii) Modern Studies and the Increase of Knowledge11
(iii) Value of Knowledge concerning Foreign Countries and People11
(iv) Value of Modern Studies for the Public Service12
(v) Value of Modern Studies as a Means to General Education and Culture15
(vi) Attitude of the Public to Modern Studies17
(vii) Summary of the National Needs17

E. Relative Importance of the Several Languages
(i) Non-European Languages18
(ii) The Chief European Languages19
(iii) Other European Languages20
(iv) Artificial Languages21

F. Means of Instruction
(i) Home Instruction22
(ii) Study of Languages Abroad23

(iii) Elementary Schools24
(iv) Secondary Schools. Preliminary Remarks24
    Aims of Language Teaching in Secondary Schools26
(v) The Time Table in Secondary Schools28
    Advanced Studies in Secondary Schools29
(vi) Organisation of Modern Studies in Secondary Schools32
    Size of Classes33
    Hours of Staff33
(vii) General Conclusions as to Secondary Schools33
(viii) At what Age should the First Language be begun in Schools?33
(ix) Preparatory Schools in their Relation to the Public School System36
(x) Modern Sides37
(xi) Preparatory and Public School System. (Conclusions)38
(xii) State Aided Secondary Schools39
    The Four Years Course of Secondary Education39
    The Seven Years Course40
(xiii) Secondary Schools for Girls40
(xiv) Need for Grading and Differentiation of Secondary Schools40
    The General Importance of Secondary Schools for Modern Studies41

(xv) Teaching Staff41
    Should the Teachers of Modern Subjects be British or Foreign?43
(xvi) Students45
(xvii) Entrance Scholarships to the Universities45
(xviii) Subventions for Study Abroad47
(xix) The Character of University Courses47
(xx) Pass Degrees48
(xxi) Co-operation of other Departments in the Work of Modern Studies49

(xxii) Evening and Day Classes50

G. Supply and Training of Teachers for Schools

H. Method
(i) General Method53
    Uniform Grammatical Terminology55
    Methods of Teaching Pupils to read Foreign Languages56
(ii) Phonetics56
(iii) Text Books and Syllabus57

I. Examinations

J. Conclusions and Recommendations
Reservations by Mr. Headlam, Dr. Leaf, Mr. Mansbridge, and Miss Tuke67

(i) List of Witnesses Examined by the Committee74
(ii) Letter and Questionnaire sent out to Business Men and others75
(iii) Table showing the Hours of Work, Salaries and Pensions of Teachers in Secondary Schools in Austria, Denmark, France, Germany, Norway, and Sweden76
(iv) Letter received from Thirty-one University Professors and Readers80

[page iv]


DEFINITIONS of the terms "Modern Languages," "Modern Studies," and "Science Committee," as used in this Report.


1. Number of meetings held. Witnesses examined.
2. Visits of Sub-Committees to Universities in England and Scotland.
3. Questionnaire issued to boys' schools.
4. Questionnaire issued to business men and others.
5. Conference with the Science Committee.


6. Modern Languages in England up to the nineteenth century. Position of French.
7. German almost unknown in Great Britain a hundred years ago. The influence of Coleridge, Carlyle, and Matthew Arnold.
8. Neglect of modern foreign languages in Universities and Public Schools up to the beginning of the nineteenth century.
9. The subsequent revival still unfavourable to the development of Modern Studies.
10. New branches of University study introduced about 1850 and afterwards; still no place for modern languages.
11. Development of the Medieval and Modern Languages Tripos at Cambridge; unfortunate influences.
12. Final Honours School of Modern Languages at Oxford.
13. Secondary School reform.
14. Creation of Modern Sides. Causes of their failure.
15. Outside examinations of no help to modern language studies.
16. Improvements of the last fifteen years.
17. Reformed methods of teaching. Improved position of modern languages in Civil Service examinations.
18. Growth of day and evening classes in large towns. Inclusion of modern languages.
19. Reaction in Scotland during the eighteenth century against the classical tradition.
20. Chairs of English Literature in Scottish Universities. French and German in the Secondary Schools.
21. Recognition in Scotland of modern languages as subjects for University study. Certificates for teachers.
22. Bilingual training of Welsh children.
23. Summary of the position and deficiencies of Modern Studies.


24. Reasons for this neglect: special position and prosperity of our nation.
25. Need for Modern Studies not clear and insistent before the war.
26. Progress of Modern Studies handicapped (a) by the bias in favour of Classical Studies.
27. (b) By the uncertainty of their aims and methods; (c) indifference of the public.
28. Need for energetic action if any advance is to be made. Above all, the public must be convinced.
29. Enquiries made by the Committee into the need for Modern Studies and its extent.


30. The uses of Modern Studies.

(i) Business Value of Modern Studies

31. The several uses of language: speaking, reading, writing.
32. Attitude of the business community towards modern languages.
33. Encouragement given by certain firms to their employees to study foreign languages.
34. Need for a greater diffusion of a knowledge of modern languages in business houses.
35. Special uses of foreign languages must be based on a sound and firm foundation. Extravagant demands of employers. Not only the languages but the countries and the peoples must be studied.
36. National welfare largely dependent on foreign trade. Apathy of employers in matters of education: need for closer co-operation with educational institutions.

(ii) Modern Studies and the Increase of Knowledge

37. No country can rely on its own stores of knowledge. Students of all kinds must be brought to realise that modern languages are a valuable possession.
38. Reading knowledge will suffice for the acquisition of information, but speaking knowledge is desirable for intercourse with foreign scholars.

(iii) Value of Knowledge concerning Foreign Countries and Peoples

39. Profound ignorance of foreign countries revealed by the war. Modern Studies a national necessity.
40. Speaking knowledge of a language necessary for a knowledge of the people. Need of a wider and many-sided study of foreign civilisations.

(iv) Value of Modern Studies for the Public Service

41. Value of Modern Studies to the Foreign Office. Suggested service of experts.
42. The late Lord Cromer's remarks on British ignorance of languages in the Egyptian Service.
43. The Consular Service: (a) The Levant Civil Service.
44. (b) The General Consular Service.
45. (c) The Consular Service for the Far East. More searching test in languages needed. Preliminary study of Oriental languages in this country desirable.
46. Lack of demand for Modern Studies for the Colonial and Home Civil Services. Modifications suggested by the new scheme of examination.
47. Importance of modern languages in all public departments, especially in the Commercial Intelligence Department now being organised.

[page v]

48. Position of modern languages in the Navy.
49, 50. Position of modern languages in the Army.
51. Different needs of the two services.
52. The needs of the public services and business require that a thorough grounding in one modern language should be given at school.

(v) Value of Modern Studies as a means to General. Education and Culture

53. Practical ends have been considered first, but the ideal cannot be ignored.
54. Modern Studies as a means to enlightenment.
55. The high ideal of Classical Studies.
56. Need for a like ideal for Modern Studies. The ideal defined.
57. School instruction in languages will lack stimulus until this ideal is reached in the Universities.
58. Cultural value of Modern Studies must be established by experiment under favourable conditions.
59. Adult classes in modern languages.

(vi) Attitude of the Public to Modern Studies

60. Need for a broader conception of Modern Studies; various evidence of growth of interest in them.
61. In the past the indifference of the general public towards education was shared by politicians, administrators, journalists, men of affairs, and by the working classes; greater need of education in the future.

62. (vii) Summary of the National Needs


(i) Non-European Languages

63. Greater encouragement and wider opportunities needed for the initial study of these languages in this country.
64. Report of the Treasury Committee on Oriental Studies resulting in the establishment of the London School of Oriental Studies. Suggestions for provincial schools of Oriental Studies and for Laboratories for Phonetic Research.

(ii) The Chief European Languages

65. French the most important from the British point of view.
66. Past position of German; its future difficult to foresee. The danger of neglect.
67. Relative importance for schools and universities of German, Italian, Spanish and Russian, judged by various criteria.
68. Provision of new staff must be gradual. Danger of precipitate action. Need for the study of economics of foreign countries at London School of Economics. Languages in schools: some may be begun at the University.

(iii) Other European Languages

69. Claims of Portuguese and other "minor languages".

70. The impossibility of general study of these languages. Each could be taken up in special localities where its need was felt. A London School of European Languages.

(iv) Artificial Languages

71. Convenience of an artificial language.
72. For those purposes in which greatest utility should lie, further development of an artificial language still seems necessary.


73. Principles of classification.

(i) Home Instruction

74. The employment of foreign nurses and governesses not so frequent as in the past. Value of training the imitative faculty when quite young. Need of skilled supervision and subsequent systematic instruction.

(ii) Study of Languages Abroad

75. Advantage of foreign study; conditions of success: desirability of previous instruction at home.
76. Residence abroad for pupils, students and teachers. Interchange of Professors. Exchange of pupils and students.

(iii) Elementary Schools

77. Ordinary Elementary Schools cannot at present find room for a foreign language. Compulsory Continuation Schools may modify the position. French in Central Schools and Training Colleges for Elementary School Teachers.
78, 79. The teaching of formal grammar and phonetics in Elementary Schools; importance of speech training in English.

(iv) Secondary Schools: Preliminary Remarks

80. Interdependence of Secondary Schools and Universities. Weakness of Higher Secondary Education, particularly in Modern Studies.
81. New scheme of the Board of Education for Advanced Courses.
82. Classification of Secondary Schools. Three main groups. (a) Unified ten years' course in certain schools.
83. (b) A ten years' course divided between Preparatory and Public Schools.
84. (c) Grant-aided Schools under local control. Some of these offer a seven or even a ten years' course; but the great majority of pupils follow a course not exceeding three or at most four years.
85. Secondary Education in Scotland. The Welsh system.
86. The problem of Modern Studies differs with the length of the course which the pupils normally follow.
87. Aims of modern language teaching - intellectual, æsthetic and disciplinary.
88. The discipline of languages is not confined to the Classical languages.
89. Full disciplinary value of a language only developed after the rudiments have been acquired. Definition of adequate progress in living and dead languages. Need of concentration if the full discipline which language training can afford is to be realised.

[page vi]

90. The practical aim of language teaching should be to attain success in at least one language. When too many languages are attempted, the result is failure in all and discouragement to study in later life.
91. Two languages should never be begun at the same time. Interval of two years desirable. Estimation of numbers of pupils with no capacity to benefit by language training.
92. What language should be learnt first? If only one, a modern language. No objection to Latin being learnt first if it is likely that a second language will also be studied.
93. No fixed rule should be laid down with regard to the second language to be studied. A free choice should be allowed so far as possible between a modern and a Classical language. Modern Studies hampered by compulsory Latin, whether in the Universities or in the schools.

(v) The Time-Table in Secondary Schools

94. The time-table must vary with the school and within the school.
95. Minimal time needed for first and second languages.
96. A liberal allowance of time to English desirable for its own sake and for that of modern foreign languages. Intensive study at certain stages, as for other subjects, so for languages.
97. After the First School Examination has been passed, those who elect to specialise in other subjects than Modern Studies should be encouraged and aided to acquire one or two foreign languages for reading purposes. Translation tests in the Second Examination.
98. Specialists in Modern Studies. Wide reading and individual study to be encouraged.
99. Content of an ideal course. Historical instruction needed to supplement the study of literature.
100. Conditions needed to realise this ideal.
101. Scheme of the Board of Education for Advanced Courses in Secondary Schools.
102. The Board's definition of "Modern Studies". Plea for the recognition of English as a main subject in this group.
103. Position of Latin in the Modern Studies group.
104. Institution of a new Higher School Examination. Its relation to University Intermediate Examinations and to the Scholarship Examinations of the Colleges of Oxford and Cambridge.
105. The development of Modern Studies will be affected by the type of examination adopted for the Second School Examination.
106. Reduction in number of languages studied would simplify the time-table.

(vi) Organisation of Modern Studies in Secondary Schools

107. No sound analogy between the learning of the mother tongue and the learning of a foreign language under school conditions. School conditions demand good teachers, clear aims, and skilful organisation.
108. Homogeneous composition of classes difficult to achieve and retain. Drawbacks of the Set system.
109. Advantages and disadvantages of annual and terminal promotion.
110. Report of the Board of Education's Enquiry into the Teaching of French in London Secondary Schools and the Report of the London County Council Inspector. Unnecessary obstacles to good organisation.
111. Size of Classes.
112. Hours of Staff.

(vii) General Conclusions as to Secondary Schools

113. Pressure of subjects demands the most economical use of school hours.

(viii-xi) Secondary Education extended over Ten Years

(viii) At what age should the first language be begun in schools?

114. Examples of this type, in which the question of the age at which languages should be begun at school is crucial.
115. Arguments in favour of beginning the study of languages early. Strength of the imitative faculty in early years.
116. Argument for deferring such beginning; mainly psychological.
117. The early years needed for the foundations of general education, the development of the power of expression, of the interest in nature and of the exercise of the creative instinct. The pupil is not ripe for the reflective study of Language. Interest in the foreign idiom soon dissipated.
118. Little experience with regard to the late beginning of Classics, but in modern languages pupils who begin late are said to make more rapid progress.
119. Stage of intellectual development more important than the actual age of the pupil.
120. Reconsideration of the practice of an early beginning desirable in the interests of the average pupil.
121. The adoption of late beginning of languages would put ten-years schools on the same footing with seven-years schools. Number of languages for groups of different capacity. Position of Latin and Greek. Importance of higher study in the concluding years of school life. Course of instruction not now adjusted to capacity of pupils.

(ix) Preparatory Schools

122. Preparatory Schools not under public control.
123. Analysis of the practice in regard to languages in a hundred and sixty-eight Preparatory Schools.
124. Report of the Joint Standing Committee of the Preparatory Schools Association and the Head Masters' Conference on language teaching.
125. Influence of Entrance Scholarship Examinations on Preparatory Schools.
126. Disadvantage of the break between Preparatory and Public Schools. Early bias in favour of Classics fostered in Preparatory Schools. Multiplication of languages at an early age.
127. Suggestions affecting Preparatory and Public Schools.

(x) Modern Sides

128. Disappointing results attending the establishment of Modern Sides in Public Schools.
129. Modern Sides should be improved by attracting better boys and by the provision of better prospects at the Universities and elsewhere.

(xi) Preparatory and Public School System

130. Conservatism of schools.

131. The old theory of liberal education justified the lavish allotment of time to language teaching. Modern conditions make this no longer possible. Such time as can be given at school to language must be concentrated on a limited objective.

132. Classical methods have prejudiced the proper development of Modern Studies by misapplication and misunderstanding.

133. Each individual at school should only learn so many languages as he can hope to bring to worthy fruition. The thorough study of the principal foreign language is the basis of all further progress.

134. Exaggerated importance attached to a multiplicity of languages: this may be the cause of some of the defects of the Preparatory Schools.

[page vii]

(xii) State-aided Secondary Schools

135. These schools fall into two groups, those providing a four-years course only and those providing both a four-years course and also a seven-years course.

The Four Years Course of Secondary Education

136. These schools of great importance in England, Scotland, and Wales.
137. Difficulty caused by irregular entry and leaving. Concentration on a single language desirable: only the minority should begin a second. The teaching of a language for commercial purposes.

The Seven-Years Course

138. Principles applicable to seven-years course stated in §121. Greater concentration needed in the shorter course.

(xiii) Secondary Schools for Girls

139. Most of the above statements apply to both sexes. Separate consideration of the problem of girls' education desirable.
140. Better position of Modern Studies in Girls' Schools.

(xiv) Need for Grading and Differentiation of Secondary Schools

141. Other preoccupations have diverted attention from the questions (a) of grading Secondary Schools to provide or not to provide Higher Secondary Education, (b) of differentiating schools in either grade according to their various aims and the varying needs of their districts.
142. Grading of Scottish Schools. Differentiation desirable.
143. Co-operation between the Central Authority and the Local Authority, and between contiguous Local Authorities necessary for a solution of these difficult questions.
144. Transfer of pupils. Provision of Scholarships.
145. General importance of Secondary Schools for Modern Studies.

(xv-xxi) The Universities

(xv) Teaching Staff

146. The functions of the Universities with regard to Modern Studies.
147, 148. Inadequacy of personnel for Modern Studies in Great Britain.
149. Unsatisfactory position and conditions of work.
150. Need of a definite settled policy for improvement. Advisory Committee suggested, to work out a fixed programme over a number of years.
151. Nationality of teachers of modern languages in Secondary Schools. British teachers to be preferred. Usefulness of "Assistants". Interim policy for the introduction of new languages into schools.
152. At the Universities direction of Modern Studies should ultimately come into the hands of British teachers. Harmful effects of foreign influence.
153. Limitations of the usefulness of the foreign teacher.
154. Occasions for temporary foreign help. Foreign "Assistants".
155. Need of better openings for well-qualified Britons.

(xvi) Students

156. Defective preparation of students of Modern Studies before admission to the Universities. Lack of encouragement. Scholarships, rewards, and public esteem.

(xvii) Entrance Scholarships to the Universities

157. Paucity of University Entrance Scholarships for Modern Studies.
158. Proposal for the establishment of Government Entrance Scholarships for Modern Studies. Type of examination proposed.
159. The modern language test for Entrance Scholarships in History should have more weight in the competition.
160. Relations of modern languages to the study of History.
161. Opinions of Professors Firth and Oman.
162. The Committee in substantial agreement with the Historical Association.
163. Change of course should be allowed to Entrance Scholars.

(xviii) Subventions for Study Abroad

164. Undergraduates should be encouraged to reside abroad during their University courses, and, if necessary, should receive financial assistance.

165. Postgraduate Studentships in Modern Studies to be held abroad.

(xix) The Character of University Courses

166, 167. New regulations for the Cambridge Modern and Medieval Languages Tripos.
168. Honours Courses in Modern Studies: their present defects.
169. Position of the Intermediate Examination and its effect on the course of study for Honours students.
170. Honours Course may well be restricted to the study of one language. Combination of English and a foreign language.
171. Requirements of general education preliminary to Honours courses in Modern Studies. (a) No compulsory Latin or Greek, (b) Higher standard in English. (c) Satisfactory training in those modern languages which will be further studied at the University or, at any rate, in some foreign language.

(xx) Pass Degrees

172. Value of the Pass Courses at British Universities.

(xxi) Co-operation of other Departments in the Work of Modern Studies

173. Other departments of University study should assist the development of Modem Studies.
174. Need for closer co-operation between the University and the Colleges, especially at Oxford.
175. The position of the Taylorian Institution at Oxford.
176. Special difficulties in London.
177. Summary of University needs.

(xxii) Other Means of Instruction: Evening and Day Classes

178. School instruction must be incomplete; opportunities needed for further study; both whole-time and part-time.
179. Satisfaction of this demand; attractiveness of private institutions.
180. Commercial instruction: classes in business hours.
181. Opportunities should be provided for intensive study of various languages. Central Institution in London; other cities might encourage languages especially useful to themselves.

[page viii]

Evening Classes

182. Part-time Continuation classes. Junior Courses.
183. Difficulties of Senior Courses.
184. Evening classes of greater value to adults than to adolescents. Practical inducements to learn modern languages have hitherto been small. Disinterested study deserves encouragement.
185. Staffing difficulties in evening schools. Training needed. Desirability of further co-operation on the part of the Universities.


186. Qualifications of the Modern Language Teacher. Suggested scheme of school training to be carried out in selected schools.
187. State Certificates for teachers of modern languages.
188. Suggestions for a Higher Certificate. Free circulation of teachers between schools and Universities.
189. Some teachers should specialise in one language, but all should have at least one subsidiary subject.
190. Women as teachers of Modern Subjects in Boys' Schools.
191. Conditions of progress.


(i) General Method

192. Exhaustive discussions of method of teaching outside the work of the Committee.
193. No royal road; the method will vary with the aim and circumstances of the student.
194. The Direct Method opposed to the analytical.
195. Observations and principles of the advocates of the Direct or Reformed Method.
196. Exclusion of the mother tongue must not be a fetish. Place of translation. Need of grammatical accuracy.
197. Choice of method must depend on teacher's qualifications.
198. Dangers of the Direct Method; the pupils' personal effort must be secured.
199. Decline in the standard of knowledge and accuracy attributed to misuse of the Direct Method. High degree of accomplishment must be set before tho pupils. Need of school libraries.
200. Necessity for consistent methods within just limits.
201. Uniform grammatical terminology desirable: work of the Joint Committee. Results hitherto obtained insufficient.
202. Methods of teaching pupils to read foreign languages: some attention must always be paid to pronunciation.

(ii) Phonetics

203. Place and value of phonetics in modern language teaching. Phonetic knowledge essential for all language teachers.
204. Class room practice: use of script.

(iii) Text-books and Syllabus

205. Text-books, tendency to over-elaboration. Deficiency in the supply of cheap plain texts.
206. Carefully devised course of study must be framed for each school by the head of the Modern Studies department. Attention paid to the proper selection of texts. French classical authors should be more studied. Private reading to be encouraged. International correspondence. Foreign visits.
207. The newer methods of teaching modern languages sound in principle.


208. Examinations need to be better adjusted to modern methods of teaching. Duty of the Schools Examination Council.
209. Oral examination to be introduced wherever possible. Difficulties in competitive examinations with large numbers.
210. Free composition tests. Examinations in Literature and Language by means of commentaries on texts. Connexion of History and Literature.
211. The place of translation into the foreign language. University teachers favour its retention. The use of the foreign language in examination tests in literature, etc.
212. Translation into English necessary for examination purposes. High standard in the skilful and accurate use of the mother tongue must be demanded.
213. The work of examination must be undertaken by scholars of the highest capacity and attainments. Importance of careful choice of Examiners.
214. The drain of the Civil Service Examinations for Second Division and Intermediate Clerkships seriously affects the supply of Elementary and Secondary school teachers.
215. Survey of the field of Modern Studies and of the means and methods of its development completed. The Committee unanimous in their conclusions except on a few points.
216. Advance in Modern Studies requires a change of spirit. Need of a high ideal.
217. The extension of the school curriculum must reduce the time given to language study. The diminished time must be utilised to give a sound training in the principles of language and to provide a firm basis for further study.


218. The findings of the Committee are arranged under Conclusions and Recommendations.


[page 1]



COMMITTEE appointed by the Prime Minister to enquire into the Position of Modern Languages in the Educational System of Great Britain (26th August, 1916).


To enquire into the position occupied by the study of Modern Languages in the educational system of Great Britain, especially in Secondary Schools and Universities, and to advise what measures are required to promote their study, regard being had to the requirements of a liberal education, including an appreciation of the history, literature and civilisation of other countries, and to the interests of commerce and public service.

Mr. Stanley Leathes, C.B. (Chairman).
Sir C. A. Montague Barlow, K.B.E., MP.
Mr. E. Bullough.
The Rt. Hon. Sir Maurice de Bunsen, G.C.M.G., G.C.V.O.
Mr. A. C. Coffin.
Dr. H. A. L. Fisher, F.B.A.
Miss M. A. Gilliland.
Mr. H. C. Gooch.
Mr. J. W. Headlam.
Mr. L. D. Holt.
Mr. Walter Leaf.
Dr. G. Macdonald, C.B., F.B.A.
Mr. A. Mansbridge.
Mr. Nowell Smith.
Miss M. J. Tuke.
Sir James Yoxall, M.P.
Secretary: Mr. A. E. Twentyman.

Note. Miss Gilliland was added to the Committee on October 12, 1916.

Dr. Fisher resigned his place on the Committee on his appointment as President of the Board of Education on December 13, 1916. The vacancy thus caused was not filled.

To the Right Honourable DAVID LLOYD GEORGE, M.P., Prime Minister.


THE Committee appointed by your predecessor in office beg leave to report as follows, first laying down for convenience the following definitions:-


(a) We conceive the term "Modern Languages" in our reference to signify living foreign languages. The study of English does not itself fall within our purview, but we shall have to consider English as a rival subject of study, entitled, as we believe, to paramount rights, and necessary as a preparation to the study of foreign languages, which in their turn are subsidiary to the study of the mother tongue. Latin and Greek cannot be excluded from our discussion since they are competitors with modern foreign languages for staff, school hours, rewards, and public esteem.

(b) We shall use the term "Modern Studies" to signify all those studies (historical, economic, literary, critical, philological, and other) which are directly approached through modern foreign languages. "Modern Studies" are thus the study of modern peoples in any and every aspect of their national life, of which the languages are an instrument as necessary as hands, and feet, and heart, and head. The term may sometimes be used in this Report for the study of one or more languages without consideration of ulterior aims, but it is well to remember that the study of languages is, except for the philologist, always a means and never an end in itself.

(c) The term "Science Committee" will be used to denote the Committee appointed at the same time with ourselves to enquire into the position occupied by Natural Science in the Educational System of Great Britain.

[page 2]


1. Your Committee have sat on 49 days and, in spite of the many calls upon the time of Its members, attendance has been satisfactory. We have interviewed 136 witnesses who may be classified as follows: persons holding high positions in the commercial financial and industrial community; representatives of the Board of Admiralty, the Army Council, the Foreign Office, the Board of Trade, the Board of Education for England and Wales, the Scotch Education Department, the Central Welsh Board, and the London County Council; representatives of the following societies: The Royal Society of Literature, the Head Masters' Conference, the Incorporated Association of Headmasters, the Association of Assistant Masters, the Association of Preparatory Schools, the Société Nationale des Professeurs Français en Angleterre, the Association of Headmistresses, the Association of Assistant Mistresses, the Association of Technical Institutions, the Association of Head Teachers in Central Schools, the Modern Language Association, the Historical Association, the Scottish Education Reform Committee, and the British Esperanto Association. Questions were addressed to the Classical Association and the English Association, and memoranda have been received from these bodies. We have also heard evidence from other persons; chosen by us for their special experience in connexion with the educational system of Great Britain and consulted in their individual capacity. M. Hovelaque, Chief Inspector of Living Languages for the French Ministry of Public Instruction, and M. Legouis, Professor of English Language and Literature at the Sorbonne, were good enough to cross the Channel to give us the great benefit of their experience and advice. Circumstances prevented us from obtaining assistance from other eminent foreign scholars whom in more peaceful times we should have desired to invite.

2. In order to obtain clearer insight into the position of Modern Languages at the Universities, the Chairman accompanied by members of the Committee visited all the Universities of England and Scotland (with the exception of Birmingham where the Modern Language Staff had been, as we were informed, taken away by the war), and six of the Colleges and Schools of the University of London. A series of questions had been previously addressed to the authorities of the several institutions, and careful and detailed memoranda were received in advance. This list of questions was also sent to those University Colleges which we were not able to visit personally, and full answers were returned. Independently, we received a memorandum from thirty-one University Professors and Teachers of Modern Languages, setting forth the difficulties encountered by the profession in Great Britain, and advocating certain reforms. At Oxford we met representatives of Modern Languages from the Women's Colleges, while representatives of Girton and Newnham gave evidence before us in London.

3. We addressed a paper of questions to those important boys' schools, seventy-seven in number, particulars of which are not ordinarily supplied to the Board of Education. Full answers to our enquiries reached us from seventy-two schools, and we had the advantage of other information supplied by the same schools to the Science Committee.

4. We sent out to about one thousand important firms and men of business, and to others of valuable administrative experience, a paper of questions relating to the practical value of modern languages in commercial and public affairs, and the adequacy of knowledge of such languages among those engaged in such affairs. To these circulars we received two hundred and fifty replies, many of which were of great interest and value; we shall take occasion later to note that 75 per cent of those to whom our enquiries were addressed did not take the trouble to answer them.

5. We have, as directed, conferred with the Science Committee, and the Chairmen and Secretaries of the two Committees have also been in communication. Each Committee has sent its Report in draft to the other.


6. We do not conceive that our purpose would be served by a prolonged enquiry into the history of these studies since the Renaissance. If we glance in the first place at England, that history reveals no natural incapacity of Englishmen to acquire foreign tongues, and no distaste for their acquisition; also, until the last fifty years it records little effective endeavour to secure opportunities for mastering them. In the sixteenth century zeal for the new learning and the attraction of the new literature of France and Italy led many of our countrymen to obtain, by some means or other, a working knowledge of French and Italian. But, as English scholarship and English literature became more self-sufficing and self-satisfying, foreign languages, though not entirely neglected, appear to have been studied less widely. In those high families that valued learning, education conducted by domestic tutors often included the study of French and Italian because they were useful in the public service. Ambitious young men by travel or by other means learnt one or two languages for like reasons. But few members of the professional and commercial classes felt any need or, generally speaking, any desire for any modern language. During the eighteenth century our love of art encouraged the study of Italian, but France was preeminent in fashion and in power, and her language therefore received more attention than any other. It is probable that even the prolonged hostilities of 1793-1815 did not diminish the influence of French, for knowledge thereof was spread by the French émigrés. After the peace of 1815 intimate relations with France were resumed, and it again became fashionable to make the Grand Tour. Thus in the first half of the nineteenth century the knowledge of French and Italian as polite accomplishments was not unduly rare; not more rare than the corresponding knowledge in other countries ranking with our own. And

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the output and sale of foreign grammars in this last-named period show that the desire to acquire modern languages was fairly widespread.

7. A hundred years ago German was virtually unknown in Great Britain. Sir Walter Scott found congenial elements in the Romantic school of Germany, in her legends, folk-tales, and relics of medievalism. He and Coleridge were perhaps the first eminent men of letters to draw British attention to this field of study. After 1830 the influx of German exiles, many of them highly educated, gave opportunity for the study of German and of German thought. Under the influence of Carlyle and subsequently of Matthew Arnold interest was aroused, and the startling events of 1866-1871 stimulated that interest. German philosophical, historical, philological, and scientific studies were found to open up a new expanse of knowledge, and, when methodical study of living languages in boys' schools began, German took the place that might otherwise have been occupied by Italian, and diverted all attention from Spanish.

8. But during all this period until about 1860 the Universities of England offered little opportunity or encouragement for the study of modern foreign languages. The establishment in 1724 by George I at Oxford of a Regius Professorship of Modern History and Modern Languages and of a corresponding chair at Cambridge only brought into relief the prevailing apathy. The Professors were each to appoint two teachers of modern languages. We are told that at Oxford the teacherships of modern languages very soon became sinecures, and much the same is true of Cambridge. That the teaching of French and Italian in girls' schools was not uncommon during the early part of the nineteenth century shows that these tongues were fashionable accomplishments, but is not evidence that any serious value was attached to them. The schools for boys that were founded by kings and other benefactors in the fourteenth, fifteenth, and especially the sixteenth centuries, or that survived from the middle ages in dependence upon the cathedral chapters, retained their original purposes unaltered. They were set up to teach Latin and afterwards to teach Greek, the main sources of enlightenment at their inception and long afterwards. In some of them mathematics received a tardy recognition; but English, history, modern languages, did not come within their scheme. Thus when towards the end of the eighteenth century such schools as Eton, Winchester, Westminster, Harrow, and afterwards Rugby, became fashionable as places of education for the aristocracy, it is probable that the study of modern languages suffered, though it was still common in good families for the children to receive instruction in French during their early years. So long as education was pursued at home, enlightened parents might give their sons opportunities of learning French and perhaps Italian; but in the system of the great schools which then began more and more to supersede domestic instruction these subjects had little place until the second quarter of the nineteenth century.

9. The revival of the two Universities of Oxford and Cambridge early in the nineteenth century led at first to a development of the traditional studies rather than to the introduction of new ones. The ancient languages and their literatures were studied with zeal; scholarship in Latin and Greek was raised to a fine art; competitive rivalry in Mathematics rose to a high pitch; there were professorships, some dating from the eighteenth or even the seventeenth century, of Arabic, Music, Chemistry, Astronomy, Botany, Geology, Natural Experimental Philosophy, and Mineralogy, but the teacherships attached to the Regius Professorship of History remained the only establishments for Modern Languages until the Taylorian bequest was received by the University of Oxford in 1835. Long after that date the records of the Taylorian Institute show little concern for this form of learning. It is interesting, however, to note that the scheme of examination proposed for the Civil Service by Lord Macaulay and his colleagues in 1854 assumes that a proportion of well-educated young men would have good knowledge of the language, history, and literature of France, Germany, or Italy. Study in these subjects must therefore have been pursued. As a matter of fact we find in the Report of the Schools Inquiry Commission appointed in 1864 that both French and German were then compulsory at Wellington, and that French was introduced at Christ's Hospital about 1835. The head of a large private school told the Commissioners that he had great difficulty in maintaining Latin, since the parents were anxious that their sons should learn modern languages. But the gradual introduction by the Colleges of Oxford and Cambridge of competitive examination for the appointment of entrance Scholars and Fellows strengthened the monopoly of Classics and Mathematics. Classics and Mathematics were until the latter half of the nineteenth century the only subjects recognised for these tests. Classical, and to a less degree mathematical, distinction led to bishoprics, headmasterships, and deaneries, and gave hope of distinction at the bar and on the bench. A false quantity was still a mark of ill-breeding, and apt quotations from Horace and Virgil were still welcomed in the House of Commons. The more Higher Education improved the less chance there was for the introduction of new studies in equality with the old. For they said the old were better.

10. Dissatisfaction with the traditional monopoly of Classics and Mathematics led to changes in the Universities about 1850; the Moral Sciences Tripos was instituted at Cambridge in 1851; it included - besides Moral Philosophy - Modern History, Political Economy, and Jurisprudence. The Natural Science Tripos began in the same year. The Civil Law Classes gave place m 1870 to the Law and History Tripos, and the HIstory Tripos attained separate existence in 1875. Unfortunately the intimate dependence of history on modern languages was not perceived by the reformers of those days; consequently no test of proficiency in any foreign language was then imposed in the Cambridge History Tripos or as a qualification for entry thereto; and none has since been introduced.

11. In the discussions that finally led in 1886 to the establishment of the Medieval and Modern Languages Tripos at Cambridge, scorn was poured on the modern languages as a subject

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of university study. Classical scholars were for the most part convinced that any one could easily learn French and German at will, an observation which must at one time have been equally true or untrue of Latin and Greek. Instead of meeting the contemptuous attacks on the "courier tripos" by the sound rejoinder that every highly developed language affords abundant scope for the exercise of distinguished talents, that the history of France or of Italy or of Germany offers an endless field for profitable study which can only become effective through a knowledge of the indigenous language, and that it is of vital importance that the great European peoples should be better known here, the supporters of the new scheme looked about for adventitious supplements to enhance the "scientific" value of living languages. Classical scholarship, though not neglectful of historical, political, legal, philosophical, and literary study, had somewhat fallen away from the tradition of the Renaissance and had come to regard language too much as an end in itself. Accordingly the ballast thrown in to weight the vernaculars of France and Germany was mainly philological. Medieval authors were to be studied not for their literary or historical value but as throwing light on the evolution of the languages, The history of Germanic speech was to be pursued back to Moeso-Gothic; the history of the German people was treated as negligible. The growth of French from Low Latin was of infinite importance; the growth of the French people from the ruins of Roman Gaul was ignored during the pursuit of Romance philology. The literatures were regarded as specimens for analysis or objects for classification. Even the accurate knowledge of the modern languages us such was inadequately honoured; and a high place in this Tripos was no guarantee that these "easy languages" had been mastered. In attempting too much the reformers did not secure that the languages themselves should be learnt. Until 1894 there was no oral test; in 1894 a test of pronunciation was introduced, not a test of command of the spoken language; and even that was optional. In 1909 an optional test of conversation was added; but finally in 1917 wider views have prevailed, and the Tripos has been reconstructed so as to comprehend the language, history, literature, life, and thought of the five principal European nations. The conception of this scheme shows a happy turn in the attitude of scholars towards modern languages and their relation to knowledge as a whole, but the resources of Cambridge and its Colleges will need to be supplemented from private or public funds if the best results are to be attained within a reasonable time.

12. The history of Oxford is not much dissimilar. The Oxford Final School of Modern History began in 1872, without any qualifying test in modern languages. An Honours School of English language and literature was established in 1894, but not until 1903 an Honours School of Modern Languages. This school embraced French, German, Italian and Spanish, to which Russian was added in 1904, and Medieval and Modern Greek in 1913. As at Cambridge, the place originally assigned to philology and medieval language was too prominent. In both Universities the causes at work were identical. The study of philology as an exact science was occupying the attention of some of the ablest linguists on the Continent. Moreover, there was a fear that modern languages would prove too easy for an Honours School, and it was thought that the training afforded by a systematic study of their evolution would help to redress the weakness. It was not then realised that modern languages appeared easy merely because no true standard of excellence had been set. There has since been a gradual movement at Oxford towards adjusting the balance; but there is still ample room for a more generous recognition of the claims of History. Honours Schools of Modern Languages have also been established in all the other Universities, but none of these has up to the present attempted to join all the studies connected with any one foreign country in a single enlightened and comprehensive School of Modern Humanities. In this respect the great Classical Schools of Oxford and Cambridge afford a model which in spite of certain defects deserves to be imitated. We shall return to the Universities later (§146 below).

13. The decade from 1860 to 1870 saw the first attempts of the Government to improve Higher School Education by t.he Public Schools' Act (1868), the Endowed Schools Act (1869), and the establishment in 1869 of the Endowed Schools Commission, whose functions were taken over in 1874 by the Charity Commission. The Charity Commission showed some determination in breaking down the monopoly of the Classics in the endowed schools under its control and in making provision for the introduction of Modern Subjects. Before 1860 French was being taught in most of the so-called Public Schools and German soon after followed in its train. By the end of the century most of the great schools had established Modern Sides. But the result of these developments was disappointing. The Charity Commission could make schemes for endowed schools, but it had no power to aid them with funds, or to follow and influence their development. The endowments of many of these schools were insufficient, and in consequence during the period 1870-1895 a constantly increasing number applied for grants to the Science and Art Department, and after 1889 claimed a share in the new money available for technical instruction. Thus any new developments on which they embarked were directed towards mathematics, science, or manual training. No encouragement was given to modern literary studies, and no improvement in this respect is apparent in this class of schools until after the Act of 1902 and the issue of separate regulations for Secondary Schools in 1904.

14. On the other hand, in the great and wealthy schools the Modern Sides which came into being were regarded too often both by masters and by boys as the refuge of the intellectually destitute. The preparatory schools training candidates for entrance Scholarships to the Public Schools turned their best boys to Latin and Greek that they might win scholarships. The original bias thus given was perpetuated in later life. Those able boys who for any reason turned away from the Classical languages turned to mathematics and science, and later to history, for which similar rewards and distinctions were provided. The course on the Modern Side had no imaginative aim; nor had it any clear and well-defined outlook. It vaguely

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embraced all those studies which were not included in the Classical course, and rarely was any conscious effort made to discriminate between the needs and purposes of these different studies or to group them in well devised schemes of instruction suited to the special objects and aptitudes of the pupils who followed them. We are not concerned with the mathematical and scientific purposes of Modern Sides, but the modern language teaching followed too closely methods devised for the teaching of dead languages; dealing with material on the whole inferior, the teachers were content with narrow ambitions; there was little attempt to make modern literary studies the basis of a discipline and of ordered information equivalent to those supplied by the Classical training. Latin was retained on the Modern Side but pursued in a half-hearted manner. On the Classical Side results were often poor, but poor results in French and German were more obvious to the ordinary observer. Classical headmasters, University dons, professional men, aware of the advantages which they had themselves received from Classical training, for the most part began with scepticism and ended with an adverse conviction. The Civil Service Commission, whose tradition it was to conform their examinations to the existing system of education, recognised the obvious claim of mathematics and science, but saw no need to go ahead of actual achievements or to create a demand for scholars in Modern Studies ahead of the supply. The average well-to-do English parent was not anxious that his sons should learn anything in particular; he was content that they should excel in cricket and football, enjoy their life, and stand well in the opinion of their masters and schoolfellows. The Modern Sides received no stimulus from public rewards and no serious backing from public opinion.

15. Outside examinations, which have had a potent effect on schools and on the whole for good, did not help the modern language teaching; indeed, their effect was directly harmful. Their methods were based on the Classical tradition. There were no oral tests: the mastery of the language was tested by translation, set composition, and questions on grammar; the literary questions could be answered from a text-book and required no direct knowledge of any foreign works except some one or two prescribed for study. Even now the methods of examining bodies are usually far behind the practice of the best teachers; they have been improved, but still too often hamper the teaching and turn it on the wrong lines.

16. In the last fifteen or twenty years great improvements have been made. First we must note those in the general organisation of schools. In 1901 the Board of Education for England and Wales began to make direct grants to Secondary Schools; in 1902 Local Authorities were empowered to aid Secondary education from the rates; in 1903 a new branch of the Board of Education was established to assist in the organisation and development of Secondary education. As a result, the old Grammar Schools have been reformed and strengthened in staff and equipment, and new Secondary Schools have been created under the management of the Local Authorities. In the schools thus reformed or created modern languages have been enabled to take their proper place. This work is even now proceeding, and with excellent effect in many places; and we shall show powerful reasons why these developments should be pressed forward. whatever may be the financial difficulties after the conclusion of peace.

17. In the nineties of the last century reformed methods in the teaching of modern languages were being introduced to English schools by the efforts of a few energetic reformers, working under the influence of Sweet, Passy and Vietor. This influence has been perpetuated and extended through the Modern Language Association, and to-day it is generally recognised that the art of teaching a living language must proceed on its own lines, unhampered by any misleading analogies or traditions. In many of those schools which receive no assistance from any public funds great interest is now taken in modern language teaching and good progress has been made; the great difficulty is to find fully qualified teachers. The Civil Service Commissioners have already placed French and German on an equal footing with Latin and Greek in all their junior competitions, and we understand that in the Open Competition for Class I of the Home Civil Service they are prepared, in accordance with the recent report of the Treasury Committee appointed at their instance, not only to put five modern languages with their history and literature on an equality with the similar learning of Greece and Rome, but to give substantial advantages to candidates who show a working knowledge of one or two living tongues. It remains to secure equal rewards and dignity for these studies in other directions; and above all, to convince the public of the practical and intellectual value of living languages, and of all the knowledge to which they are the avenue. Much has been done, but much more remains to do.

18. In the last fifty years an elaborate system of day and evening classes has grown up in most of our large towns. This was conducted until 1899 under the supervision of the Science and Art Department, and has been since then under that of the Technological Branch of the Board of Education. The instruction was mainly technical and scientific, but commercial classes were also established, where, besides shorthand, book-keeping, commercial history and the like, modern languages have been taught. Everywhere the modern language teaching, where attempted, has suffered from teachers who were untrained or overworked and sometimes both, from pupils who had received at school no initiation into the science of language, and often from arrangements ill-designed to serve the end in view. Language teaching, to be effective, must be given continuously at short intervals, and must be prolonged without serious intermission over a considerable period. But in those few of our great cities where satisfactory classes are held, they attract not only those who desire to learn languages for use in business, but also a proportion who follow Modern Studies for their own sake, and a few who are enthusiasts for language as an end in itself. Knowledge of various languages

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sufficient for commercial correspondence is often acquired. Many pass the examinations of the Royal Society of Arts or of the London Chamber of Commerce. Though the young men are gone, war has given an impetus to these classes, especially in Spanish, Russian, and Italian. Organisation has proved difficult; and we shall not be satisfied until these opportunities have been greatly extended and improved. School teaching, however good, can only make a beginning and create a desire for further advance; the chief work in modern languages for business purposes, as well as for extension and increase of knowledge, must be done after the students have ceased full-time study; and the school-leaving age, in the new Secondary Schools, is at present rather under than over sixteen.

19. Much of what has been said about England applies also to Scotland, though there are some interesting differences. In the latter half of the eighteenth century - the great days of Adam Smith and David Hume - there was a vigorous reaction in Scotland against the old Grammar School type of education. Bodies of the enlightened met - as now they meet - to protest against the idea that all learning consisted "in the grammatical knowledge of dead languages, and skill in metaphysical subtleties, while what had immediate reference to life and practice was despised", and to thank Heaven that "Providence has cast our lot in happier times when things begin to be valued according to their use." Attempts were made to carry these ideas into effect; and in some of the burghs "academies" were set up in which Latin and Greek found no place, and subjects like Mathematics, Geography, Navigation, Civil and Natural History, Chemistry, Astronomy, and even Fortification, were taught. But the vested interests of the teachers in the old schools were an impediment to reorganisation; and progress was slow.

20. Sound instruction in English is the best foundation for successful study of other languages. In the Scottish Universities it happens that chairs of English Literature are of much older standing than in England; and in the competitions for bursaries to assist university study English has long had an integral and important position. Again, French as a school subject was not unknown in Scotland in the sixteenth century. In 1574 the Town Council of Edinburgh gave permission to a Frenchman to set up a school for instruction in "French, Arithmetic, and Accompts", and voted him a salary of 20 beyond his fees; and this evidence does not stand alone. In the eighteenth century French was taught in a good many of the Burgh or Grammar Schools, and the number increased during the early part of the nineteenth century. German probably did not make its appearance until the forties. Thereafter the two kept their footing, often taught by the same teacher and suffering alike from the lack of university recognition, but still making steady headway, until the door of the Universities was partly opened to living foreign languages by the Commission of 1889. Prior to that Commission Secondary School teaching in Scotland, though good as far as it went, was very inadequate in volume and very imperfectly organised; and the Universities themselves did a large part of the work that properly belongs to Secondary Schools.

21. The Commissioners of 1889 by establishing a matriculation or preliminary examination for entrance to the Scottish Universities made the establishment of a Secondary school system possible and also necessary; it was forthwith taken in hand. The Commission acknowledged the right of modern languages to recognition as University subjects. They admitted French, German, and Italian, as optional subjects in the bursary competitions, though each was to have only half the competitive value of English, Latin, Greek and Mathematics; an Honour's examination in French and German was set up, but whether for Honours or for a pass degree every candidate was bound to present himself for examination in either Latin or Greek; the institution of lectureships in French and German was authorised, and lecturers were eventually appointed, but no Professorships were established by the Commissioners as for History at Glasgow and Edinburgh. Many changes have since taken place, but it cannot be said that modern foreign languages have yet attained equality in academic status or public esteem when compared with Latin, Greek, or English. In Scotland also philological tendencies prevailed, and the more comprehensive historical view of Modern Studies was not taken. On the other hand the Leaving Certificate examination, originally instituted in 1888, has done much to encourage modern language study in the schools and to guide the teachers to the best lines of instruction. Moreover in 1906, the Scotch Education Department instituted a system of training for Secondary teachers, and modern language teachers were required for their Certificates to have a University Degree with Honours, and to have passed at least a year in a country where the language to be taught was spoken. Every Scottish teacher who intends to teach French and German now feels that the special qualification of the Department is necessary to success in his career. More has been done in Scotland than in England, especially to raise the general standard in the schools; but, as in England, so in Scotland much more remains to be done.

22. In Wales the concurrent study of Welsh and English is encouraged by the policy of the Central Board and the other authorities which control Welsh education. This policy is immediately inspired by the desire to preserve and develop the national language and literature, without forgoing the advantages which a knowledge of EnglIsh may bring. It is claimed that their bilingual training should give Welsh children greater facility in acquiring other living languages. We agree that the successful acquisition of a second language creates a desire, stimulates hope, and trains the faculties, for the subsequent learning of other languages. In Wales the second language (English or Welsh) can be begun early; in many districts both are current; in all the second language can be more easily taught and learned than can any second language in any part of England or in almost any part of Scotland. We observe, in fact, that a considerable number of Welsh school children do reach a qualifying standard in French, and

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that Latin is not neglected. To these results bilingual education may be an assistance rather than an impediment, and this view was taken by our witnesses.

23. Summing up the changes brought by time, we may say that Modern Studies had only an insignificant place in the national system of education of Great Britain some seventy years ago. Those who learnt foreign languages owed little to organised opportunities. In the next forty years penetration of Scottish and English schools by Modern Studies was more and more general. About thirty years ago a foothold was established in the Universities; and since that time the value of Modern Studies has been widely recognised in the school system of Great Britain. But the public on the whole has continued to be indifferent, and the provision of an adequately trained and qualified staff of teachers has lagged behind the establishment of teaching posts and the allotment of school hours. The deficiencies are still serious and patent; and they will not be remedied until a juster sense of the practical value and intellectual dignity of the study of modern languages and modern peoples prevails in the public as a whole and in all its sections.


24. If, as we believe, Modern Studies are not valued in this country at their true worth, the reasons are not far to seek. Even in the past this country might have greatly profited by Modern Studies; but our actual need was less than that of many other countries. Our literature is the richest of the modern world. Our newspapers were the best-informed. Our repertory of knowledge was great, and only became insufficient when technical, scientific, and other specialist learning was required. We inhabit an island and have no familiar contact with other peoples who cannot understand our tongue. We are great travellers, but when we travel we find our language spoken over a large part of the habitable globe. In Europe and the Far East we commonly encounter many natives who have found it worth while to learn our tongue, at least in some "pidgin" form. Before the war our commercial and industrial position was prosperous to the limits of our desires, and this prosperity appeared to be inexpugnable. If the foundations of our strength and wealth were being insidiously weakened by our own complacency and by foreign energy, the process was only evident to close and vigilant observers. Languages are learnt for necessity or profit or intellectual satisfaction. Our necessity was not apparent; our profit was sufficient; the most part of us found in other ways such modest intellectual satisfaction as we craved.

25. It is true that the need of Modern Studies was not clear and insistent before the war. We were not like the Dutch and the Scandinavians, or the Japanese, who, on travelling to a foreign country, find their own language useless; we were not like the Russians and other Slavs, who are greatly dependent on foreign literature and foreign learning for enlightenment; we had not the same incentive as the Germans, who were hungry for material betterment. But it is also true that, like the neglect of science, the neglect of Modern Studies was a symptom of intellectual apathy in this country, or perhaps rather of excessive absorption by other interests - sports and similar amusements, politics, class conflicts, business and routine. The educational reforms of the last fifty years were, it must be assumed, inspired by a national sense of national needs, but that sense was neither dominant nor continuous nor patient of immediate sacrifices. By a very great number of our citizens education has rather been tolerated than welcomed. The low age limit of Elementary Education, the premature withdrawal of pupils from the Secondary Schools, the poor salaries of teachers, the indifference of Parliament, the grudging spirit of ratepayers in many educational areas, all show reluctance to pay the price, willingness to accept inferior quality. The best can only be acquired by sacrifice, and we were not conscious of any need for sacrifice. The only class which as a class have shown by sacrifice any high esteem for education are those middle-class parents who pinch their other expenditure in order to send their sons, and more recently their daughters, to good schools and to the University; but we would recognise and note with satisfaction an increasing tendency among the working class to utilise good schools, not infrequently at extreme individual sacrifice. In Scotland a better tradition is widely spread; but it would be a mistake to be satisfied even with Scottish standards, as attained in actuality before the war; it may even be doubted whether the Scottish tradition has been maintained in its complete integrity.

26. In the scramble for inadequate resources, inadequate staff, and inadequate school-time, Modern Studies have improved their position during the last ten or fifteen years, though there is still much ground to make up. There has been a squeeze of subjects, both in Secondary Schools and at the University. In Secondary Schools, besides the increased demands of English, of Modern Studies, and of Natural Science, new subjects - Drawing, Manual Training, and Physical Exercises - have called for and deserved attention. In the best schools an ancient system of culture and intensive education, based upon the Classical languages, was in possession of a great part of the field. Many, if not most, of the best boys responded readily to the attractions of those subtle and plastic tongues, to the charm of fine literature, and to the stimulus of teachers who knew and greatly valued what they taught. Those boys became Classical scholars by the influence of system and tradition; many of them might have followed Modern Studies with equal joy and ardour. For the Classical boys were reserved a chief part of the scholarships, prizes, and distinctions at school and at the University; and public examinations corresponded to the School and University systems. It is beyond question that a majority of the pupils did not acquire through the Classics any satisfying education. It

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was generally supposed that most of them would not have done any better under any other training; but that does not appear to us certain.

27. In competition with the Classics, Modern Studies suffered from uncertainty of method and of aims, from lack of established traditions and standards; teachers needed exceptional qualifications, involving unusual length of training and expense; many were accepted as instructors whose attainments were frankly insufficient. Those of the highest attainments and ideals were discouraged by indifference, sometimes by contempt and hostility. Latterly, though a greater number of competent teachers of modern languages have entered the profession, the number of schools, and therefore the demand for staff, has increased in much higher proportion. Those pupils who, in spite of all disadvantages, succeeded in obtaining a sound knowledge of one or more modern languages found until recently no keen demand for this speciality, sometimes no demand at all. Correspondence work was chiefly undertaken by foreigners eager to learn our language and our methods of business. Foreign languages were not, as a rule, thought necessary for higher posts, even by firms doing great business abroad. All those conditions impeded the successful pursuit of Modern Studies, But employers, as a rule, took no pains to discover the best product of the Secondary Schools. Some progressive firms have recently begun to take their boys at sixteen, but most still prefer to engage them at thirteen or fourteen. It is probable that too much is expected at sixteen; many, from a few examples, leap to the conclusion that all teaching of languages at school is useless. The truth, of course, is that a sound foundation can be laid in school, but further study and training are imperatively necessary. A certain amount of the criticism to which teachers are exposed proceeds from ignorance and indifference. This was brought home to us in striking fashion. One of our witnesses, an important employer, while deploring that modern languages were not well taught in schools, confessed that he did not know that the Grammar School of his own town was a conspicuous example to the contrary. But in spite of difficulties common to the whole profession, and of many that are peculiar to the Modern Studies branch, steady improvement has been made in the product of our schools, and since the war there are signs that the practical value of Modern Studies has been forced on the notice of commerce and industry.

28. That Modern Studies have been neglected there can be no doubt. If they are important, there is abundant need for the appointment of this Committee. But it is not enough that a Committee should point out what should be done; if the need is established and means can be indicated to satisfy it, action must be taken. Zealous work must be encouraged in both masters and pupils; incentives must be supplied and multiplied; opportunities must be abundantly provided; money must be spent if the return is worth the expenditure. But, above all, thought and energy are required; and these will not be forthcoming unless adequate motives operate, unless an effective demand exists. There can be no adequate motives, there can be no effective demand, unless the public is convinced. Employers must be convinced that Modern Studies are necessary to their business. The clerical classes must be convinced that Modern Studies lead to professional advancement. The working classes must be convinced that Modern Studies are necessary to the restoration and increase of that national wealth on which the improvement of the conditions of their life is dependent. The present moment is above all others urgent; as soon as the war is over we shall need all kinds of modern knowledge for the reconstruction of our commercial, industrial, financial, and transport business. Some of our few experts in Modern Studies will not return to business or to teaching; many of the foreign clerks on whom we relied have proved to be a danger rather than an economy; old business relations must be restored and new openings found; yet during the war little can be done to provide for these urgent needs. Many of the best teachers have gone; the youths whom they taught have gone as they reached military age; the University classrooms are empty; the excellent help of women has enabled Modern Studies to be carried on, but, while the war continues, no advance can be looked for to make good lost ground and work off arrears. A first task after the war must be to make good that lost ground, to work off those accumulated arrears. These things will be done if the public is convinced, but not otherwise.

29. Your Committee, Sir, had no doubt in their own mind of the importance of Modern Studies. But we were not content to register a foregone conclusion; we tested our belief by every means in our power; and the first test to which we set ourselves was an enquiry into the need and the extent of the need for Modern Studies. This enquiry was conducted by the aid of the great Public Departments, the authorities of the Navy and the Army, and the most representative witnesses whom we could find in the world of business and foreign administration. Our results may be analysed as follows.


30. Modern Studies subserve the purposes of industry and commerce; they are needed for scientific instruction and information; by them alone can be gathered and disseminated that more intimate knowledge of foreign countries which is necessary for the wise conduct of its affairs by a democratic people; they are required for the public service of the country at home as well as abroad; through and by them our people can learn what is best and highest in other countries. Some of us may attach more importance to one, some to another of these elements, but all together must combine to supply such a complex of motives as can unite and mobilise a nation in the pursuit of worthy knowledge.

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31. The languages themselves can be learnt and known in different ways. Of any language It is possible to have a speaking knowledge, a reading knowledge, and a writing knowledge. It is, of course, possible to speak a language without having learnt to read it or to write it. It is no less possible to read and even to write a language without being able to speak it. Each of these elements in combination assists and strengthens each of the others; the speaking powers in particular can be fortified and the vocabulary increased by reading. But each has for different purposes Its own independent value; it must never be forgotten that the language - whether spoken or read or written - is only a means to those various purposes; and hardly any one of them all can be achieved unless the language has been used to obtain some part of all the other knowledge - historical, economic, social, etc. - which touches the people to whom the language belongs.

32. After the Government Departments chiefly concerned, our earliest enquiries were addressed to the business community - to Chambers of Commerce, and to individual firms. To the thousand or so question papers sent out by us we received in all two hundred and fifty replies. Certain districts and many firms have no immediate need of foreign languages; other firms having prospered without their use have never reckoned up the advantages that might accrue by direct communication with foreign countries in their own language, and by intimate knowledge of the economy, the character, the prejudices, the ways of thought, of foreign peoples. The results of our questionings are the more noteworthy. A very decided majority of those who were good enough to favour us with replies, both Chambers of Commerce and individuals, acknowledged that business had been actually hampered by British ignorance of foreign languages. Those heads of firms who themselves knew one or more foreign languages were unanimous in declaring that their knowledge had been eminently valuable to themselves. Some few (ten firms and one Chamber) declared that English was the leading language of commerce - which is not denied - and urged that our policy should be to make it universal. This proposition assumes the acquiescence of our enemies and also of our friends; even if practicable it has obvious dangers. We were told that the distributing trade of South America had largely passed from English to German firms, even where British goods were concerned, and this because the Germans took the pains to learn Spanish. With such examples before us we can hardly afford to wait till all the world has formed the habit of talking English. A majority admitted that foreigners were employed by British firms as clerks, travellers, and agents; forty-seven firms declared this to be their own practice and many others observed on the point a silence which may have been significant; six firms did business with China, Russia, Austria, France, and South America, through English-speaking Germans. That disadvantage had resulted by such practices was not universally allowed, but there was strong and well-informed evidence to this effect. It is interesting to learn that in London the employment of foreign clerks had been greatly diminished before the war. Thus the efforts of the London County Council and the London Chamber do not seem to have been entirely fruitless. Almost all the witnesses agreed that foreigners - especially Germans, Scandinavians, Dutch, Swiss, and Russians - were better equipped in foreign languages than Britons. One enterprising firm of engineers showed us an admirable series of highly technical pamphlets drawn up in different foreign languages, and attributed their own great success largely to this device, which is widely used e.g. by Germans and Swiss. A number of firms agreed that trade had been lost by the lack of trade catalogues, specifications, etc., prepared in the foreign languages.

33. Ninety-three of the firms encourage their employees to learn foreign languages, chiefly by paying the fees for classes attended by them, and occasionally by arranging classes in their own offices. In some instances rise of salary or a money premium follows the attainment of a given standard in the language studied. A good many firms send their clerks abroad to learn the language of some country with which they do business. A certain reluctance to go abroad was observed in young Britons; various explanations were suggested; the most probable was that young men who knew no modern languages exaggerated the difficulties to be encountered and had no imaginative grasp of the advantages to be obtained. It was generally admitted that before going abroad it is very desirable to have studied at home; British teachers are better able to understand and explain the difficulties found by British students; It was agreed that a year or more may thus be saved after arrival in the foreign country. Some firms definitely took the line that it was not the duty of employers to encourage the acquisition of foreign languages, and laid the onus on the Government. We need not discuss the question of duty; but even the narrowest view of self-interest might suggest that the apathy of firms would defeat the utmost efforts of Government.

34. Twenty-six firms used foreign languages only for specialised functions; but fifty-seven found them helpful throughout their organisation. Our conclusion is that for business purposes a considerable number of good linguists are required; a small proportion of the whole number employed will suffice, but it should be ample to allow a free selection for specific functions from among well-qualified candidates. Knowledge of foreign languages is no guarantee of business capacity, and several firms complained that for certain duties they had either to choose a candidate of inferior capacity or dispense with the knowledge of languages. Some of our witnesses stated that a clerk once found competent in foreign correspondence is not infrequently regarded as irreplaceable and may therefore miss his chance of promotion to other lines of work. This narrow view of the utility of modern languages must give way to a larger conception. The belief that proficiency in modern languages may hinder advancement is a direct discouragement to their study, and yet they are needed by many firms in the higher as well as in the lower grades

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of their organisation. Such proficiency can only be turned to the best advantage when it is more common; and It will only become more common when its value is more generally recognised.

35. For business purposes on the whole a speaking knowledge of the language is most generally useful for travellers and foreign agents and in personal intercourse with representatives of foreign firms. A writing knowledge (which presupposes a reading knowledge) may suffice for the correspondence room. But it must not be supposed that for commerce an inaccurate knowledge of a language will suffice or that the scope of study can be reduced to narrow limits. For commercial as for all other purposes a sound and firm foundation is needed; though for commercial as for other purposes it is not wise to base these fundamental studies on matter too exclusively literary and imaginative. The language once firmly fixed in the mind, the technical vocabulary and phraseology of any business can be easily acquired; but, as we shall point out later, excepting the universally current forms and phrases, the terms of a trade can only be satisfactorily learnt when the nature and purposes of the special business are fully understood. It must be the task of the firm, which takes into its employ a young man or woman on the ground of knowledge of any foreign language, first to teach the business, meanwhile ensuring that the language is kept up by practice and study, and then to instruct the aspirants in the special technical language of the trade or industry. Then the candidate will be ready to go abroad or to take a place in the correspondence room, and should rapidly become useful. Too many firms appear to expect their entrants to come from school with a complete commercial knowledge of the language desired. At sixteen such an expectation is ludicrous; at eighteen or nineteen less excessive, but even at that age further instruction and encouragement are needed to make the best of school preparation however good. We wish also to point out with all desirable emphasis that for the successful conduct of commerce and of the commercial side of industry knowledge of languages is not sufficient; an intimate knowledge of foreign countries and of foreign peoples is also needed, and especially by those who have in their hands the superior direction of business.

36. The evidence collected by us seemed conclusive as to the need of foreign languages in business, especially under the new conditions which may be expected to prevail after the war. Keen emulation Will then be encountered; lost ground must be recovered; new openings must be found; in countries where we felt secure we shall find our footing precarious. So large is the part of our industrial product marketed abroad, so great is our capital invested in foreign countries, so universal was our carrying trade, so extensive are our financial transactions and influence and the power of our credit, that any impediment to our success will react not only on those firms directly interested in foreign markets, but also on the prosperity of the whole country. Our foreign trade does not comprise the whole of our activities but the whole of our activities depend upon it. In a great part of our foreign trade a knowledge of languages, a knowledge of foreign countries and of foreign peoples, will be directly and abundantly remunerative. It is not enough to provide more and better instruction; the instruction available must be better known and more highly valued. It is necessary that every effort should be made to provide the best opportunities of study, but it is also necessary that business men should acquaint themselves with the sources of supply that exist. Even before the war there was a supply of well-taught boys and girls, who could have been trained for business needs. A considerable apathy was disclosed; of a thousand enquiries sent out, three-fourths remained unanswered. Of our witnesses many appeared quite ignorant of the progress in teaching that had been made of late years. Others expected to get linguists ready made. Many recruited all their entrants at fourteen; others, recruiting from schools at sixteen or under, expected too much at that age; very few indeed understood that, if solid knowledge of modern languages is required, a proportion of entrants must be taken at eighteen or nineteen, that salaries must be sufficient on entry to encourage pupils to stay at school, and that training must be systematically continued after entry. Hardly any had a conception of the higher uses of Modern Studies in business. The most enlightened and progressive firms were those that showed most interest in education, and not least in that branch with which we are concerned. Those which were most contemptuous of education were those who did not take the pains to enquire what schooling their applicants had received or what the schools had done for them. They often admitted when pressed that in the selection of candidates for employment no weight was given to any test in foreign languages; the cases in which, after engagement, any encouragement, whether by pecuniary rewards or by special allowance of time for study, was given to the acquisition of languages useful in business were lamentably few; and such encouragement, when offered, appeared to us entirely inadequate. Many even of those who gave evidence before us seemed to prefer the easiest course, that of grumbling at British education, and employing the cheap labour of German clerks and travellers. We cannot too strongly insist on the necessity for the support of British men of business if any material improvement of the conditions is to be hoped for. In so far as the prevailing indifference proceeds from ignorance, means can and should be taken systematically to dispel that ignorance. We learnt with satisfaction of the efforts made by Heads of Commercial Schools under the direction of the London County Council to interest business firms in the work of their institutions. But similar work is needed all over the country and for all kinds of schools. The Universities are not too proud to get into touch with business through their Appointments Boards; in like manner every school, every Board of Governors, every Local Authority, should understand the importance of business requirements and the necessity of business confidence and support. Business is not the whole end of education, but it is one of its principal ends. On the other hand if business men are not satisfied with the results of our educational system, it is their duty and their interest to see that it is improved; and this they can only do when they have learnt what schools are doing, what they could do, what they cannot do, and what

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remains for directors of business to do for themselves. When the economic, the geographical, the social, and the political side of Modern Studies has been duly developed in the Universities, the public may learn that these matters also have a high business value.


37. No country can afford to rely on its domestic stores of knowledge. The whole civilised world is a cooperative manufactory of knowledge. In science, technical and pure, in history, antiquities, law, politics, economics, philosophy, new researches are constantly leading to new discoveries, new and fruitful ideas are giving new pointers to thought, new applications of old principles are being made, old stores are being rearranged, classified, and made available for new purposes. In this work all the civilised countries of the world collaborate, and in no branch of knowledge, abstract or concrete, disinterested or applied to the uses of man, can the specialist neglect the work of foreign students. To obtain access to these sources of knowledge some languages are more useful than others, but many have at least a limited utility. The knowledge contributed by foreigners to the common store is useful to commerce and industry, but most of all it is needed in the Universities which have all learning for their province. In our circuit of the Universities we enquired whether the students in general could read foreign books; a reading knowledge of French appeared to be fairly widespread but seldom fully adequate for the purposes of study; knowledge of German was much rarer. One foreign language once well learnt, we believe that most persons of average ability can with encouragement and a little assistance learn a second language by themselves for reading purposes. But there must be a sufficient motive. The chief motive that is needed is that the young student should believe that foreign languages are a valuable possession, and this he will only believe when he has learnt to use one freely for his pleasure and profit.

38. For the acquisition of information not to be found in English books a reading knowledge is sufficient. But for the general widening of the bounds of knowledge a speaking knowledge is also valuable to the ambitious student. Intercourse with foreign scholars, and visits to foreign Universities, are of great value; and therefore even the speaking knowledge should not be underrated by those who have the increase of knowledge mainly in view.


39. The war has made this people conscious of its ignorance of foreign countries and their peoples. A democratic government requires an instructed people and for the first time this people is desirous of instruction. Such instruction cannot in the nature of things be universal; It must proceed from the more instructed to the more ignorant. It cannot be said that before the war knowledge of foreign countries and their peoples was sufficient in ministers, politicians, journalists, civil servants, University professors, schoolmasters, men of business, or in any class of those whose function it is to instruct or guide the public. Further, those few who had important knowledge to impart found no well-informed and interested public to take up and spread this information. Thus the masses and the classes alike were ignorant to the point of public danger. Ignorance of the mental attitude and aspirations of the German people may not have been the cause of the war; it certainly prevented due preparation and hampered our efforts after the war had begun; it still darkens our counsels. Similar ignorance of France, greater ignorance of Italy, abysmal ignorance of Russia, have impeded the effective prosecution of the war, and will impede friendly and cooperative action after the war is over. We need a higher level of instruction in those whose duty it is to enlighten us; we need a far greater public, well-informed and eager to understand; we need in all some interpenetration of knowledge and insight. The gradual dissipation of national ignorance is the greatest aim of Modern Studies. They can only work through the few to the many, through the many to the multitude. But neither the higher instruction of the few, nor the broader instruction of the many, nor the dissemination of sound views in the multitude, can be safely neglected in a democratic country. In this field Modern Studies are not a mere source of profit, not only a means of obtaining knowledge, nor an instrument of culture; they are a national necessity.

40. For the acquisition of sound knowledge of any foreign country a speaking knowledge of the language is the first necessity. Hundreds of thousands of British citizens travelled in France before the war; but only a minimal percentage got any knowledge of the French people, because the others could not converse with the inhabitants in their own language. Of those who knew the language only a fraction had the historical and literary knowledge and the general enlightenment to make the best use of foreign travel and residence. Here also many must be instructed in order that a few may make good. Speaking is indispensable for this purpose, but reading is also necessary. Much may be learnt about foreign countries by studying their literature and their newspapers, from works of history and other stores of information. For what foreign country have we encyclopædic handbooks of its art, its institutions, its biography, its geography, its philosophy, such as we possess for Greece and Rome? For France, Germany, Italy, Russia, we need a series of works, dealing with their history in its fullest and widest sense, not less complete, reliable, and exhaustive, than the treatises that have been compiled for Greece and Rome. The economic study alone of each of these and of many other countries would amply repay the nation that knew how to encourage and reward such studies. If Modern Studies are broadly conceived and duly honoured and recompensed, the example of the Classics shows that the work will be done.

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41. What is said in paragraphs 39 and 40 applies directly to the public services. They would gain beyond appreciation by the widening and intensifying of Modern Studies. But each of the public services has its own needs. That Modern Studies are useful in the Foreign Office and the Diplomatic Service is obvious to all. It is recognised in the Competition for these services, but only in so far that a high standard in French and German was required before the war. But more than a mere knowledge of two or more languages before entry is desirable. The systematic study of one or two countries, with their history, economics, etc., as well as their languages, would be an excellent preparation for a career in the Foreign Office and Diplomatic Service; and if our suggestions (§§166-8) are adopted we may hope that courses for such study will be provided in all our principal Universities. For some years past the scheme of competition for Class I of the Home Civil Service has been used in a modified form for the Foreign Office and Diplomatic Service; and the new scheme now proposed by the Treasury Committee for that Competition (§17) could be easily adapted to the needs of those services. We understand that the Foreign Office has expressed its readiness to adopt the new scheme with suitable alterations if it is accepted for the Home Civil Service. There are other matters besides modern foreign languages and even besides the study of individual countries which are needed in the services concerned with foreign affairs; among these are European History, Geography, Politics, International Law; and it is well that candidates should have a certain latitude of choice and some variety of training; but it is above all in our opinion desirable that in the Foreign Office, the Diplomatic Service, and the Consular Service, the acquisition of specialist and expert knowledge should be encouraged and stimulated after entry. It should therefore be a natural extension and development of studies systematically pursued in the course of the preparation and educational training that leads up to the competition by which candidates are selected. Foreign Office clerks and Diplomats do not need to be principally and in the first place students; but a taste for study and a desire for the acquisition of knowledge should be a general result of the education encouraged by the competition. It appears to us, further, that in the Foreign Office every foreign country should have its own expert capable of rapidly reading, digesting, selecting, summarising, and appraising information from newspapers, books, treaties, and reports. One such expert might serve for two or more of the minor countries, especially where, as in Scandinavia, the languages are closely related. We have been given to understand that these conclusions have been independently reached by the Foreign Office, where during these critical times it has been found necessary to deal with the very intricate war problems of the moment under headings relating to groups of subjects rather than under headings relating to groups of nations as was formerly the practice. Had nothing been devised to counteract it, this might have tended to impair somewhat the expert study of particular countries as separate entities. To meet the difficulty, there have been set up both inside and outside the Foreign Office, but working in concert, departments which possess a knowledge of the languages needed and are engaged on intelligence work requiring an expert study of the particular countries. It may be hoped that these departments, or a combination of them, will continue in some form or other after peace is declared, and that they will be absorbed more closely into the organisation of the Foreign Office. Speaking generally, the Committee consider that for the Foreign Office, the Diplomatic Service, the Consular Service, and the Egyptian Service, the mere acquisition of foreign languages, however important, should not be regarded as an end in itself; the languages should be studied and used as a means to all valuable knowledge concerning the several countries and as a key to the national psychology of each.

42. For the Egyptian service we had the advantage of a very frank and weighty communication from Lord Cromer, written only a few weeks before his death. He had no doubt "that the conduct of public affairs in Egypt was constantly hampered" by British ignorance of foreign languages "especially of French". His examples were very telling but cannot be quoted by us without indiscretion. Egypt is a polyglot country, where - besides French - Arabic, Turkish, Greek, and Italian, are of high utility. Lord Cromer regretted the low level of instruction in young Britons, though it was compensated in his opinion by high qualities of character. But, although knowledge of foreign languages is no guarantee of character, he certainly would have seen no reason why character should be impaired by the study of modern tongues, and we think it desirable that in selecting officers for Egypt evidence of capacity to learn languages should be taken into account. It is improbable that any candidate who has learnt no language well before the age of twenty-two will afterwards acquire the languages he needs in Egypt. There are no doubt exceptions, but they must be rare. For a long time there was only one Briton who could be trusted by the Civil Service Commissioners to examine in Amharic, the language of Egypt's neighbour, Abyssinia. The service of Egypt being self-contained, the utility of any language acquired by a public servant will continue to the end of his career.

43. The Consular Service is now under consideration by the authorities concerned, with a view to reconstruction. Three different methods of recruitment are at present in force. The system of selection for the Levant Civil Service lays greater stress on languages than any other competition for the public service. The limits of age are eighteen to twenty-four, and the entrance examination is principally in languages, of which five are taken. After selection the probationers go to Cambridge where they learn two more of the following: Turkish, Arabic, Persian, Russian. The character and ability of the officers are warmly spoken of by their official superiors. The competition is calculated to secure linguists, and the authorities who supervise their University training inform us that they have in fact high capacity for languages.

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44. For the General Consular Service the limits of age for the competition are twenty-two to twenty-seven; the higher limit is adopted to suit candidates who have had commercial experience; but the years between twenty-five and twenty-seven are too late for examination, since most of the candidates must have long abandoned systematic study. Languages - two of the following: French, German, Spanish - may be offered, but the standard is not adequate. The system of promotion may make it necessary to appoint as Consul-General an officer who has no knowledge of the language of his district. We were told that great care is taken to secure that this defect should be supplied by those of his subordinates who belong to the regular service, though sometimes reliance has to be placed on the honorary Consuls. The system of unpaid Consuls has been criticised on grounds with which we are not concerned; but in view of the evidence before us, we must emphasise the importance of securing a high standard of qualification in those who enter this service as a profession, especially a high standard in modern languages.

45. The Consular Service of the Far East is recruited by an examination suited to University candidates. French is the only obligatory subject, and the standard in that language is relatively low. Yet German as well as French must certainly have been useful in the Far-East under pre-war conditions. The candidates are allowed a wide choice of subjects, but do not often attain any high degree of academic accomplishment. Judged by the test of examination their qualifications are very decidedly lower than those of the Foreign Office clerks, the Attachés in the Diplomatic Service, and the Eastern cadets (§46). Moreover, those actually selected undergo no course of special preparation in this country. Provision is made for the systematic instruction and testing, during their first two years abroad, of the Student Interpreters (as they are called) in Chinese, or Japanese, or Siamese; but it would be desirable to require by the entrance examination more evidence of capacity to learn languages, and also to give the selected officers some period of preliminary training in one of the three languages before they leave this country. The competent authorities declare that with the aid of foreign assistants the first stages of those languages can be most usefully got over before going abroad. In the circumstances it is highly creditable to this class of Consular officers that, as we are informed, their practical knowledge of the local language has been of the greatest assistance to them in the performance of their duties.

46. The Colonial Service as a whole is irregularly recruited, and no examination test is imposed except for the Civil Services of Ceylon, Hong Kong, and the Malay Peninsula. The entrants to these services - known as Eastern Cadets - are selected by the same competition as Class I of the Home Civil Service, though these appointments come last in the preference of almost all the candidates, and therefore must on the whole be selected by those who are less able than those who obtain the higher places. It is possible under the existing scheme to be successful in this competition without any knowledge of any language, and Modern Studies have hitherto had little weight in the Competition as compared with other subjects. If the scheme put forward by the Treasury Committee for the Home Civil Service is adopted, Modern Studies will have full and equal recognition in the examination with all other main subjects of University study. Moreover, a strong incentive will be given to all candidates to acquire two modern foreign languages for reading and translating purposes. In course of time these reforms should have a very favourable effect on Modern Studies in the universities and schools of the kingdom and on the knowledge of and interest in modern languages among civil servants in general. Another scheme has been put forward by the Royal Commission on the Indian Services by which Indian Civil Servants would be chosen at school-leaving age instead of university-leaving age. In that scheme also Modern Studies are put on a level with other school studies of principal rank, but the scheme has not been worked out in so much detail as the scheme of the Treasury Committee for Class I, which has been accepted in principle by the Colonial Office, and by the Foreign Office. Whatever scheme is adopted for the Indian Civil Service, it seems important that with a view to the accurate acquisition of the Indian vernaculars a thorough knowledge of phonetics should form part of the special training of the selected candidates.

47. Modern languages are of considerable importance in all public offices where treatises and discussions in foreign languages afford valuable knowledge of tact and principle. Such knowledge must be needed, for instance, in the Board of Education and the Board of Agriculture, though not of course by all the officials in those Departments. But the Board of Trade would seem to require, especially in its Commercial Intelligence Branch, more, and more various, knowledge of foreign languages than any other Department in the kingdom. This Department is now in process of reorganisation and is to serve under the joint rule of the Foreign Office and the Board of Trade; before its reconstruction began it appears to have possessed a sufficient number of clerks competent to translate most of the chief commercial languages. For eight languages two or more translators were available, and German had no fewer than eight. In view of the general neglect of Modern Studies in our educational system during past years, these numbers are creditable, but it is to be hoped that in the reorganisation of the Branch steps will be taken to secure that a good proportion of the higher staff can dispense with translators in at least two foreign languages. On the whole the great Departments appear to be somewhat indifferent to modern languages; an attitude which they share, or shared till recently, with the great body of the nation. They need to a greater or less degree all, or two, or one or other of the three elements - speaking, reading, and writing - but reading is no doubt for them the most useful.

48. Passing from the Civil Departments to the fighting Services, we gathered that in the Navy the knowledge of modern languages is generally weak. Lord Cromer expressed special regret that Naval officers were not better equipped in this respect; they have, he said, frequently

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to discharge diplomatic or semi-diplomatic functions, and made in his experience very good diplomatists. Under the present system of education at Osborne and Dartmouth cadets learn one modern language, French or German; four hours are given weekly to the language in class; two are allotted for preparation. In view of the heavy work required in mathematics, science, and engineering, this allowance of time is as much as can be expected and should be sufficient to lay a good foundation. Commissioned officers, it should be explained, are encouraged by rewards to qualify as Interpreters on a searching examination held by the Civil Service Commissioners. Some succeed in passing this test in one or more languages by private study wIthout special leave; but there is a scheme by which twenty officers after passing a preliminary test are to be allowed to study abroad on full pay either for twelve or for six months. If on their return they qualify in the appropriate class, they receive a gratuity to cover extra expenses. Unfortunately the scarcity of naval officers during the years immediately preceding the war while the fleet was continually growing prevented the full number contemplated from receiving leave. Moreover, the ablest of the young officers are unable to spare time from the specialist duties which they take up. Nevertheless the number qualified as Interpreters in the languages of all the European countries possessing important naval strength was regarded as more than adequate for normal peace requirements. Anything beyond this can only be attained by providing a surplus of officers who can be spared to study abroad; the development of the War Staff created during Mr. Churchill's time as First Lord may help by creating a specialist career equal in reputation to other specialist careers, and demanding among other things attention to modern languages. During the war, the deficiency in officers knowing Dutch and the Scandinavian languages has been overcome by entering specially qualified officers from the Royal Naval Volunteer Reserve.

49. Owing to the urgent demands of the moment the evidence offered to the Committee as to the knowledge of modern languages now obtaining in the Army and as to the provision for the instruction of cadets was necessarily small in amount. Necessarily also it was limited to the state of matters that prevailed before the outbreak of war, a limitation which will, of course, find its reflexion in what we ourselves have to say. Professional soldiers all the world over are expected to avail themselves of the experience embodied in the literature of other armies. Moreover, under normal conditions British officers are probably called on to give more service abroad than the officers of any other nation. In these circumstances it might reasonably be supposed that a general acquaintance with foreign tongues and an intelligent interest in foreign countries would be widespread among holders of the King's commission. Our witnesses, however, informed us that in this respect the position was much less satisfactory than the Army Council could wish; even in the Staff College it would appear that officers, selected though they are for their special aptitude and ability, have to depend too much on translations in their study of the history and the theory of their profession, and this in spite of the fact that the literature most useful is French or German. The explanation must lie in the intellectual training through which the large majority of our officers have passed. The military authorities throw the responsibility upon the schools, but this defence does not cover the whole of the case, for it does not affect those educational arrangements which are under the direct control of the War Office. No instruction in languages is given at the Staff College; but, at the entrance examination, German or French or Russian or Hindustani is obligatory and an optional paper can be taken in any one of these four or of eight other languages. The possibility of requiring a reading knowledge (not of course a speaking knowledge) of French and German as a sine quâ non of admission deserves to be considered. In the competition for the Royal Military College (Sandhurst) and the Royal Military Academy (Woolwich) one modern language must be taken and a second may be offered, while after entry two hours a week are allotted to instruction in French or in German. The scarcity of qualified candidates for Sandhurst - a scarcity due to social and economic causes, any discussion of which would carry us far beyond our terms of reference - has depressed to a miserable level the pass standard in French, the language usually selected. The position at Woolwich is naturally better, owing to the keener competition for posts in the Engineers and in the Artillery, but even there the quality of the work cannot be described as high, the main stress being laid upon excellence in Mathematics. If regard be had to the actual attainments of the entrants, the amount of instruction provided for them as cadets is certainly not adequate to secure the object in view. Yet our witnesses were emphatic as to the impossibility of encroaching further upon the time that has to be devoted to the more strictly professional subjects; the taking up of a fresh language after entrance was strongly deprecated, and it was admitted that the system of determining seniority by the number of marks gamed upon exit was calculated to encourage concentration and to deter a candidate who was well grounded in French from endeavouring to improve his knowledge of German. On the broad question of policy it is scarcely for us to combat the weight of military opinion. But we are entitled to say that the hours at present available are not always employed to the best advantage. At Sandhurst, in particular, the classes in French were very large and not well graded, and until very recently the status of the instructors was unsatisfactory. German fared somewhat better, since the number taking this language was smaller and more attention could be given to individual pupils. That things were not so bad at Woolwich must be in no small measure due to the superior mental calibre of the cadets who attend the Academy. It is clear that as soon as peace is restored the whole situation should receive the earnest attention of those more immediately responsible.

50. Up to this point we have been thinking mainly of the desirability of having in the Army a considerable number of officers who have a moderate knowledge of the most common European tongues. But there is room also for a certain proportion of highly qualified specialists. The machinery for obtaining them is similar to that which exists in the Navy. The Army has

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its own system of examination for Interpreters, and between 1904 and 1913 candidates presented themselves to the Civil Service Commissioners in no fewer than twenty-two different languages. The number of officers thus coming forward was actually considerable, although it was but a small percentage of the total number admissible. The standard of the examination for First-Class Interpreters is high, though probably higher in the most popular languages such as French and German than in those which are more seldom offered. In actual war many Interpreters were lost in service with the first Expeditionary Force; others could not be spared from their military duties. Interpreters and liaison officers were supplied in other ways. We understand that the knowledge of Russian possessed by officers of the British and of the Indian Army has been most useful.

51. The needs of the two services are somewhat different. The first need for the Navy is speech, though an officer ranking as an Interpreter should also be able to write a letter, and in future naval officers may have something to learn from foreign works on the technicalities of naval operations and equipment, for instance, in the submarine, mining, and air departments. The military officer, though not qualified for the duties of an interpreter or of a liaison officer, may benefit by reading works in certain foreign languages on military history and military science. It is possible that it might be worth while to encourage officers to qualify in the reading and translating knowledge of French, German, and perhaps of one or two other languages. In general both the Navy and the Army (like the civil population) need a number of good linguists in excess of the actual number employed as Interpreters, in order that a sufficiency may be forthcoming without calling on those who are required for other purposes. In the Navy and in the Army, as also in the civil population, it is desirable that a large proportion should be well grounded in at least one language during boyhood or adolescence, the additional supply of good linguists being secured by the encouragement of subsequent study.

52. From this review of the needs of the public services and the commercial world there seems to emerge one general point to which we attach the highest importance. It was frequently given in evidence that, whether in the public service or in commercial life, promotion must necessarily depend, not on a knowledge of modern languages which, however important and useful it may be, is necessarily secondary, but on professional and business aptitude. The civil servant, the officer in the Army or the Navy, or the employee in a house of business, clearly cannot claim or expect advancement simply because he has an exceptional knowledge of languages. On the other hand, we are convinced that in all these services there is a serious loss owing to the low standard or modern languages now prevailing. There appears to be one remedy, and only one for this state of things. It is essential that a thorough grounding in one modern language at least should be given at school, and that real importance should be assigned to this in any examination which admits to the professions. That is to say, it is at an early age that the essential work must be done on which later studies can be based. The present defects though they cannot be remedied without the close co-operation of the professions themselves, are the necessary result or the unsatisfactory position which modern languages have held in schools. This is a point to which we shall have to refer at greater length in later portions of the Report.


53. We have devoted four sub-sections to the practical ends of Modern Studies, and we owe no apology for putting practical ends first. Knowledge and training have a clear value in the struggle for existence; and in order to live well it is first of all necessary to live. Practical education is the only foundation on which idealistic achievements can be raised; to neglect the practical ends of education is foolishness; but to recognise no other is to degrade humanity. Moreover, it is to ignore a most powerful motive. Art, poetry, the drama, history, philosophy, may have no 'survival value'; but men will work for the joy of comprehension, for the joy in beauty, for the joy of creative construction, as they will not work for less inspiring ends. The desire to live well is a most potent force; and it has done and will still do as much to modify the aims of men as the struggle for existence. Culture and civilisation are by-products of life; but like some other by-products they may yield a greater return than the parent industry. What gives dignity and splendour to life may be more precious than the life itself.

54. Thus will be seen what we conceive to be the relation between the practical and the idealistic aims of education. The practical aim of education is to enable men to live as individuals and as citizens. The idealistic aim of education is to enable men to live better. We are not here concerned with the moral side of education; that is a separate and all-important province. All study has some moral value; Modern Studies are the study of man in all his higher activities, and thus may have a special moral value; but we need say no more of that. We are, and must be, concerned with Modern Studies as an instrument of culture; and by culture we mean that training which tends to develop the higher faculties, the imagination, the sense of beauty, and the intellectual comprehension. Clearer vision, mental harmony, a just sense of proportion, higher illumination - these are the gifts that culture ought to bring. It cannot bring them to all; in their fullness they can be possessed by few; but in some measure they may be shared by all who desire them.

55. It is in the possession of such an idealistic aim that the strength of Classical studies lies. The life and thought of Greece and Rome were revealed to the men of the Renaissance. They said, and rightly said: "This life was better than ours; these thoughts are higher than ours; let us see what we can learn from Greece and Rome." They studied; and modern civilisation, modern culture, spring directly from their studies. What began as an inspiration

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became a system. Schools sprang up in which Greek and Latin were taught, at first consciously as a means to higher illumination, afterwards, perhaps too often, as an end in themselves. But, in spite of all human imperfections of men and methods, the old ideal never died out. It still inspires the best of our teachers, the best of cur students. A. Classical education does not mean Latin and Greek. It means scholarship with its passion for accuracy, discipline of taste, training in form and order; but it means more than that. It means intimate study of all that is best in what has come down to us from the greatest minds of two great races; but it means more than that. It aims at an imaginative comprehension of the whole life of two historic peoples, in their art, their law, their politics, their institutions, and their larger economics, and also in their creative work of poetry, history, and philosophy. Such aspirations raise the whole level of study in school and University. There are dreary stages unrefreshed by any distant prospect. But the best teachers do not lose sight of the whole meaning of Classical learning and culture even while they are grinding the gerunds. The best pupils early begin to catch the inspiration; before they leave school they are on the way to become scholars and to construct their own scheme of humane knowledge. They pass to the University fit to make full use of all its opportunities. Among them are afterwards found some of the best historians, the best critics, the best professors of English literature, and, above all, men in every walk of life with the widest outlook, the most balanced judgement, the finest taste. The best product of a Classical education is very good, and all that is best therein comes from the high ideal.

56. Modern Studies need a like ideal. It will not suffice to base the claims of Modern Studies solely on the practical needs of individuals or even of the nation. We need an ideal such as inspires the highest Classical studies. The best work will never be done with an eye to material profit. We must frame our ideal so that it can be consistently pursued through the whole course of school and University life, and even beyond. The first object in schools must be to lay the foundation of scholarship and skilled facility of expression and comprehension. The "more or less", the "there or thereabouts", is not good enough in language, or in any other instrument of culture or information; the standard of accuracy and of form cannot be too high. Early we should also aspire to make some of the boys and girls understand that foreign languages are not learnt as an end in themselves, but as a means to the comprehension of foreign peoples, whose history is full of fascinating adventure, who have said and felt and seen and made things worthy of our comprehension, who are now alive and engaged in like travail with ourselves, who see things differently from ourselves and therefore can the better help us to understand what is the whole of truth. Before the boys and girls leave school, by history and literature and other helps to instruction they should be convinced that the study of foreign peoples is an attractive pursuit and that it cannot be carried far without an intimate knowledge of their languages. Then we shall have as entrants to our Universities men and women who are fit to range, without direct assistance, the whole learning and literature of the languages they elect to follow, and require from their professors only the higher aid. Some of these at their graduation should be finished scholars, ready to become masters and experts in all that appertains to the countries and the peoples that they choose for study. All this can be done for Greece and Rome; why not for France and Germany, for Italy and Spain?

57. Even at school this high ideal should come into clear view as a definite aspiration to create enthusiasm and stimulate ambition. But school instruction in languages will always be impoverished and jejune, unless those aspirations and ambitions are in some measure fulfilled at the Universities by examples of high scholarship and many-sided illumination, which may uplift the minds of students who afterwards become teachers. Philology, the study of words as words and of language for its own sake, is a worthy branch of learning, but Modern Studies at the Universities should mean much more than philology. The study and practice of the use of languages as a fine art is an admirable school of thought and taste. The study of literature, critical, æsthetic, or scientific, should not fail to develop imaginative sympathy, and it is one of the principal avenues to the knowledge of a foreign people. But the study of words as words, of language as language, of books as books, and of the art of language for its own sake, even all together, form too limited an objective for Modern Studies at the University. Those studies should be in the widest sense historical, and embrace a comprehensive view of all the larger manifestations of the past and present life of the peoples selected for study. Many, perhaps all, of the students must specialise to some degree, but all should know enough of the whole to see its relation to their speciality, and the combined activities of the Modern Honours School should neglect no part of illuminating knowledge. So regarded, and only when so regarded, Modern Studies may become a means of complete culture and enlIghtenment. The higher learning of the Universities is needed in order that the schools may be penetrated by the right spirit, and that those who are occupied with every preparatory stage, however humble, may have in mind the highest possibilities of their work. To those highest ends but few can approach, but the higher they are set the greater benefit to all.

58. It is often questioned, without due ground of experience, whether Modern Studies can afford an education equivalent to the best classical education. To these questionings it may be replied that the experiment has not yet been tried. The discipline obviously cannot be identical, but it may nevertheless be equivalent; and the equivalence cannot be denied by the wise until the experiment has had a full trial with all favourable conditions throughout at least a whole generation. It must be tried, since Modern Studies are needed for the enlightenment of the nation no less than for practical purposes. If Modern Studies are needed for instruction they must be used for education; and the cultural side of education is at least as important as the practical. If the experiment is to have a full, fair, and free trial, Modern Studies must not be regarded as the refuge of mediocrity; they must have an ample proportion

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of the best brains. There should be no jealousy, but a healthy emulation between Classical and Modern Studies. That jealousy exists on both sides it would be futile to deny; but the jealousy comes largely because the provision of opportunities and encouragement is not adequate both for Modern and for Classical Studies. We do not suggest that present opportunities and encouragement for Classics are excessive; but we submit that similar opportunities and encouragement would not be excessive for Modern Studies.

59. In this connexion we must not omit to notice those disinterested studies of Modern Languages which are carried on by a considerable number of adults in evening classes provided by public authorities, by the Workers' Educational Association, and by other bodies. We are satisfied that many of these students acquire foreign languages not with any hope of material advantages, but as a means of enlarging their sphere of interest and widening their outlook. That is true to some extent not only of modern languages such as French, German and Italian, but also of Latin and Greek. This class of students deserves, in our opinion, all possible encouragement, and they must be borne in mind in any systematic effort that may be made to increase, and improve opportunities for Modern Studies.


60. The need of wider and more perfect knowledge of modern foreign languages has, we conceive, been completely established by the evidence that we have received from men of business and administrators. The worthy ambitions, the disappointments, the difficulties of teachers of Modern Languages have been amply disclosed by the evidence of the Modern Language Association, by the testimony of schoolmasters and schoolmistresses given individually or on behalf of their societies, and by the weighty letter submitted to us by thirty-one professors and lecturers in Modern Languages of the various Universities and Colleges of the United Kingdom. In this last document we welcome especially the unanimous pronouncement that instruction should be provided by the Universities and Colleges "not merely in the languages and literature ... but also in the history in broad outline, the customs and institutions, and the social conditions of the foreign peoples concerned." In the "social conditions" economics may be included by implication; but they deserve and require separate and specific emphasis. We agree that "this broader conception of the study of modern languages would be more worthy of University traditions than the present standard; it would not only make it possible to meet the requirements of intending teachers of modern languages, but would also enable our Universities to prepare adequately students destined for commerce, journalism, and the public services." We believe that the war has aroused more than a fleeting interest in Modern Studies. This interest has been shown by the foundation, accomplished or contemplated, of chairs in modern languages, by attendance at evening classes in languages hitherto neglected, by experiments in the teaching of Spanish and Russian in schools, by the tone of the public Press, and by many other indications too numerous to be set down. During our visits to Universities we were glad to find sympathy, good-will, and hope in all the authorities whom we took into consultation. We consider it to be part of our duty to encourage and perpetuate so far as we may this interest in a most important means of national education, instruction, and. equipment for the struggle for life and better life which will begin when the war is ended.

61. The conviction which we held when we began our sittings has been deepened and intensified as our enquiries proceeded; and we shall not be satisfied unless we have done something to dispel the indifference and apathy of the general public which have been the main cause of British shortcomings in the past. That indifference and apathy has been perhaps most conspicuous in the world of business; it is part of the general disregard of education which was not unnatural in the prosperous past when self-satisfaction and self-complacency had some apparent justification. In the dark and difficult future improved education will be the main hope of business and the chief guarantee of industrial and commercial recovery. But the lack of interest has not been confined to business men; it has been shared by politicians, by administrators, by journalists, and by almost all of those whose function it is to instruct the public. We need not wonder that it has been shared by the great majority of the working classes, among whom also we now observe some change of spirit. The greater the share that the workers may obtain in the national income, the greater their interest in increasing that income; and a principal means of increasing the national income is by improving all those natural capacities which at present are wasted for want of training. But the desire for material advantage is not the only motive on which we rely; more potent perhaps, more hopeful certainly, is the desire for enlightenment and personal cultivation which we believe to be growing among those whose educational privileges have hitherto been limited.


62. The national needs which call for satisfaction by the development of Modern Studies may be summed up and classified. For the public service and for business - and we must once more emphasise the national concern in the prosperity of private business - we need clerks, travellers, foreign agents, directors and managers of firms, and administrators, each group possessing according to its functions adequate knowledge of foreign languages, foreign countries, and foreign peoples. To produce these we need improved instruction; and improved instruction is only possible by the provision or more highly competent teachers for secondary schools, evening schools, and day continuation schools. For the improvement of teaching in schools

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we need an improvement in the Universities. But the function of Universities is not alone the training of teachers but also the increase and systematisation of knowledge. The Universities should train up for the service of the nation an abundant supply of men and women capable of acquiring, digesting, arranging, and imparting the vast amount of knowledge concerning foreign countries which can be obtained by study, and travel, and personal intercourse. This knowledge comprises not only philology and imaginative literature, which have held too exclusive a monopoly in the past, but also history, economics, sociology, politics, art, technology, and philosophy. And finally we need an enlightened public, desirous of general and of expert knowledge, capable of using and valuing the work of those who are masters in the several provinces of learning. Having thus defined in a comprehensive manner, but without extravagance, the national needs which may be served by Modern Studies, we may proceed to consider first the relative importance of the main languages and groups of languages, and secondly the various means of instruction which exist and can be improved, or which have still to be provided.



63. This country, above all others, should be the home of learning for all the chief and almost all the minor non-European languages. Chinese, Japanese, Turkish, Arabic, Persian, the languages of India, the Malay group, Haussa, and Swahili, are only a few of the tongues for which we have greater or less need for commercial and administrative purposes. School teaching in non-European languages is not necessary, and is probably impracticable; the study of such languages will as a rule be confined to adults. There is no reason to doubt the capacity of the country to supply able students in sufficient numbers. It will be a great advantage to such students if their school study of languages has been successful, if they have learnt how to acquire a language and know that it can be done; on the other hand, any original bent they may have had in that direction is not likely to survive long years of futile effort spread over two or three languages. Incentive is further needed; the due appreciation, among the directors of business, of language and of the knowledge that comes by language; the due appreciation of scholars and scholarship by Government. Opportunity is also needed - the opportunity to get over initial difficulties before leaving this country. Our witnesses, while frequently urging that such languages can only be thoroughly and usefully studied abroad, with few exceptions admit that there is great value in acquiring the rudiments before going out. English teachers are better able to explain to students the general principles of new types of languages than any teachers that are likely to be found in the foreign country. The foreign teacher is often quite ignorant of the principles that underlie the practice of his own tongue, and modes of expression appear natural to him which are difficult of comprehension by a European. Moreover, a thorough training in phonetics cannot fail to supply a useful discipline of ear and organs of speech and to assist in developing the necessary powers of delicate observation. Even the tones of Chinese and cognate languages and of some of the African languages can be approached by methodic and scientific initiation. If it is possible to supply every professor of such foreign languages with one or more indigenous assistants, the initial difficulties can be mastered before the pupil need leave this country, and progress abroad will be far more rapid.

64. But this section of our task has been made easier by the Report of the Treasury Committee appointed to consider the organisation of Oriental studies in London. This Report (Cd. 4560-1) was published in 1909, and the London School of Oriental Studies has already been established. The Report goes very thoroughly into the relevant facts concerning the several languages, and contrasts in a striking manner the facilities hitherto available in such countries as France and Germany with those provided in this kingdom before the new school was set up.* As time proceeds, the demands of that school must become indefinitely great. We need not again go over ground so recently surveyed; but we must recommend that the Government should give the school their continuous and liberal support, and build up on an adequate footing new departments as opportunity offers. At the same time, where active schools of certain Oriental languages exist, as at Cambridge and Oxford, they should not be allowed to suffer by diversion of their resources to the new School. Rather it may be found useful to set up in some of the great commercial cities provincial schools for some of the languages which have value for the commerce of the district. One hundred or even two hundred thousand pounds a year would not be an excessive estimate of expenditure, which, if wisely applied, would return a far greater national profit. It cannot be too often repeated that in such matters the nation is one economic unit, and profits in every part (not least in the Exchequer) by each new and successful enterprise and by the extended development of foreign commerce. Such new sources of wealth are certainly rendered more accessible by better knowledge of foreign languages. Among these the Oriental languages have high importance not only for trade but for administration, and it must not be thought that we are in any degree blind to that importance because we do not hold it necessary to repeat any part of investigations so recently completed. We may, however, point out that scientific research into little known languages should not be neglected. Many of these languages have been studied only by untrained observers, and philological or phonetic research by revealing unsuspected features in such tongues may greatly assist their correct interpretation. There is in this country, we

*We are told that an active propaganda has been carried on by the Germans in India, contrasting what they have done for the study of Indian languages and Indian learning with what our own countrymen and our own Government have done.

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believe, only one Laboratory for Phonetic Research, that of University College, London University. Other countries have thought it worth while to develop this field of enquiry, which is very promising, and should not be neglected by the greatest of Oriental and African Powers.


65. The importance of any language may be judged by the significance of its people in the development of modern civilisation, by the intrinsic value of its literature, by its contribution to the valid learning of our times, and by its practical use in commercial and other national intercourse. French is by far the most important language in the history of modern civilisation. France was ahead of Italy in the medieval revival of learning. The University of Paris was the chief source of light to Europe from the days of Abelard for three hundred years. Italy took the lead in that later revival which is known as the Renaissance, and when she fell a victim to the discordant political ambitions of foreign powers, of the Papacy, and of her own princelings, it was France who with her help carried on the great tradition. The continued progress of France was never arrested by civil discord, by unlimited autocracy, or even by the convulsive crisis of her great Revolution. For three hundred years France was the acknowledged leader of Europe in the arts, the sciences, and the fashions. In literature alone among the arts has she an equal or a superior in England. In the actual bulk and volume of her scientific work France may, during the last half century, have fallen behind Germany, but by vivifying and pregnant ideas she has made the whole world her debtor, and in the lucidity and logical consistency of her interpretation of life she has no rival. We are her debtors above all other peoples, for England was during four centuries the pupil, and afterwards the enemy and rival, but always in some degree under the influence of France. Even for practical purposes the great majority of our witnesses give French the first place. Not only is French the language of diplomatic intercourse, but in countries where English has not established itself French is found most commonly useful as an intermediary between any two persons of different nationality. Physical propinquity also gives French a special value for Englishmen; and recent calamities confronted and endured together should create an eternal bond of sympathy between the two nations. Fundamental diversity of character and temperament render mutual comprehension difficult, but once established it should serve to correct some of our national defects. In mere matter of language, as in other things, the two nations seem destined to serve as complementary one to the other. Our careless articulation may be corrected by the precise and studied utterance of the French; our modes of written expression might gain much from study of the perspicuous phrasing, logical construction, and harmonious proportions of their prose. From every point of view French is, for us above all, the most important of living tongues; it has, and it should retain, the first place in our schools and Universities.

66. Before the war German was perhaps the first language from the point of view of information. Its preeminence was attained somewhat rapidly - in the course of the nineteenth century, and especially in the last forty years. In Philosophy and in those sciences and quasi-sciences in which new knowledge is constantly acquired and general conceptions undergo frequent modifications, no student who wished to keep abreast of the times could afford to ignore German publications. This position was strengthened by the industry and competence of German translators. Important works of learning and literature, produced in languages not generally known, such as Dutch and Russian, were often accessible only in German translations. The German supremacy was skilfully fostered by the admirably organised German book trade, and extended not only to the natural sciences, but to the whole field of philology and antiquities and to a large part of history. From the practical point of view German was second in value to French alone, and on the strictly commercial side probably equal, or even superior to it, owing to the wide extension of German activity and the general use of German in the business of Russia and the Balkan Peninsula. Thus far there is no room for difference of opinion. The further questions that naturally arise - as to the real measure of civilisation's debt to Germany and the comparative value of her literature we do not propose to discuss. The time is hardly propitious for their dispassionate consideration. No doubt as a factor of the first magnitude in shaping the destiny of Europe during the last hundred years, Germany must retain a permanent and compelling interest to the historical student, though the estimate of the causes which have raised her to that position may undergo changes in the opinion of succeeding generations. And on this also there will be general agreement. After the war the importance of German must correspond with the importance of Germany. If Germany after the war is still enterprising, industrious, highly organised, formidable no less in trade than in arms, we cannot afford to neglect her or ignore her for a moment; we cannot leave any of her activities unstudied. The knowledge of Germany by specialists will not suffice; it must be widespread throughout the people. A democracy cannot afford to be ignorant. We may indicate one point in particular, which is likely to be of importance at the end of the war. It will in any case be impossible to oust the use of German in commerce, even for our own purposes at home, apart from any question of competition in neutral countries. The mere settlement of pre-war accounts with Germany will be a long and difficult matter. If we are not ourselves able to supply men who have sufficient knowledge of German to conduct the necessary correspondence, strong incentive will be offered to revert to the old practice of employing qualified German clerks for the purpose. This is only one of many considerations which lead us to the conclusion that it is of essential importance to the nation that the study of the German language should be not only maintained but extended. Unfortunately the problem may not prove to be so simple as it seems. Is it certain that after the war public opinion will at once be ready to give an improved position to German in schools?

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Yet wisdom and prudence demand that its position should be improved for during the early part of this century the study of German was not going forward but backward.*

67. Apart from those political and national considerations which may demand a preference for German, we should be inclined to say that the place given to German in schools and Universities, though inadequate before the war, was still unduly superior to that allowed to Italian, Spanish, and Russian. Of the four languages, Spanish has perhaps the greatest commercial importance, owing to the size and growing wealth of the Spanish-speaking communities of Central and Southern America. We have had conclusive evidence of the damage suffered by British trade in America through British ignorance of Spanish. We are told that the Latin races of America are unwilling to learn English or any other foreign language. The citizens of the United States, although themselves not much inclined to study foreign languages, have not only been alert to see a likely advantage here, but have displayed, no less than the Germans, an intelligent anticipation of a possible renaissance of Spain herself. We learn that the supply in North America of text-books and hand-books for the study of Spanish is far superior to our own. Spain has a striking and romantic history and a fine literature. But Italy stands first among the four countries as one of the pillars of European civilisation. With her often dimmed but never broken tradition of ancient Rome and her never-failing power of rejuvenation, she has been an all-pervasive influence for the dissemination of classical learning, letters, music, arts, and humane accomplishments, throughout the countries of Europe. To the guardianship of the remains of ancient civilisation, she has always, even in the days of utter political disruption added her share in the advancement of ideas in physical science, medicine, law, and engineering; and, since she recovered her political unity, she has produced some of the foremost poets and thinkers of the age, and has worthily upheld the heritage of Leonardo, Vico, Galileo, and Volta. It was largely through our neglect of her industrial development, which promises to place her in the forefront of Europe, especially in engineering and electro-technics, that she has been at the mercy of German peaceful penetration, carried almost to the point of conquest. Of Russia and Russian the national ignorance was almost complete, though in the last ten years before the war some interest had been awakened. Here there were great opportunities for industrial enterprise, but we left the country too much to the Germans. The future of Russia is even more uncertain than that of Germany, but unless the worst should happen Russia should offer a great opening which can only be used by a nation which has studied, as well as the language of Russia, her social anatomy, the character of her people, her geography, and her economic conditions and capacities. Russian is a difficult language, though the evidence we have heard leads us to believe that its difficulties are often exaggerated. The need of grammars and other aids to study is being gradually supplied; but a satisfactory dictionary is not yet available. Though Russian literature of late years has attracted great interest and exercised some influence, we shall probably be right in conceding to it little educational value; nor is Russian history a subject to be recommended for study in schools. At present it appears as amorphous, obscure, unaccented, and uninspiring. Perhaps when it has been worked up for use some of these features may turn out to be superficial; they may rub off in the handling, and the true structure and contours may come to light. Such work is work for the Universities; until it has been accomplished, schoolmasters cannot be expected to make much of it. Finally, each and all of these countries make contributions to knowledge. Judged by this last criterion, Germany and France stand first, Italy third, and Russia and Spain last.

68. We conclude that, after France, all these four countries - Germany, Italy, Spain, and Russia - deserve a first-class place in the Modern Studies of our Universities. When the political situation is more settled the relative values of the four will be more certain, but it is not likely that any one of them can drop out of the first rank. We hope that for each by degrees, first here and then there, an adequate staff will be established and endowed, but not, we trust, with undue precipitation. It is better to wait than to saddle Universities with incompetent professors. We would specially draw attention to the importance of adequate and systematic study of the economics of the principal countries of the world. The London School of Economics should be a centre for the detailed and comprehensive study of the products, the industry, the trade, the economic conditions and capacities, not only of the chief European countries but also of North and South America, Asia, and Africa. In schools where a second language is taken, we see no reason why any one or all of the four languages should not be on the list of optional languages, provided resources are available and good teachers are forthcoming, Some schools may be able to introduce their older pupils to one or other of them as a third language for reading purposes; in order that a fully comprehensive Honours Course should be carried out by the means of any language, it is necessary that a certain complement of students should reach the University having received at school an adequate grounding in that language. But University progress need not be arrested until the schools have developed their teaching. Arabic and Persian are commonly begun at the Universities, and with the aid of an indigenous assistant there is no reason why any language should not be begun at the University. It is presumed that most, if not all, of the languages taught at the London School of Oriental Studies are begun there without previous preparation.


69. After the five great European languages - French, German, Italian, Spanish, and Russian - come a number of other and less important tongues. These can hardly have any place

*This was partly if not entirely due to the competition of Latin. In many schools the option for a second language was between German and Latin. Latin was required by the Universities, and also for entrance examination to certain professions. Thus those pupils who studied a second language showed an increasing preference for Latin, which was perhaps also recommended by certain other real or supposed advantages.

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in our schools, nor can it be expected that they should hold a principal place in our Universities, though here and there, in London or in some centre having close relations with a particular country, one or other of them may deserve a Chair. Portuguese is the most important, partly because of our ancient political and commercial relations with Portugal, partly because of the present achievements and future prospects of enterprise in Brazil, and to some extent because of the Portuguese colonies in Africa. Accordingly, we learn with satisfaction that a Portuguese Chair is to be established in King's College of the University of London. The Scandinavian and Dutch languages come perhaps next in value to our citizens, for commerce, as a means to scientific and other information, and for their literature, the value of Dutch being enhanced by its position in Java, and still more by the currency of the Taal in South Africa. There is a joint movement for the teaching of Dutch and Flemish in University and Bedford Colleges, London; and we are glad to know that similar provision for the Scandinavian languages is in contemplation. Magyar, Roumanian, the Slavonic languages of the Austro-Hungarian State and of the Balkan Peninsular and Finnish all have claims to consideration. Magyar has in the past received no recognition in this country, though its literature is of some importance and its people enterprising and powerful. We understand that it is now being taught in the London School of Oriental Studies. Before the war Slavonic languages other than Russian had received the scantiest recognition; during the war King's College, London, had been able by the aid of exiled scholars to make a promising beginning with them, and we hope that the interest thus amused may not be allowed to die, but may be extended and perpetuated. At one time a Lectureship in Modern Greek was maintained at St Andrews by the enlightened liberality of the late Marquis of Bute; but it lapsed several years ago. We trust that efforts now being made will procure a permanent endowment in London for this language, whose importance as a commercial medium for the whole region of the Levant it would be difficult to exaggerate.

70. Although it is not to be expected that any large number of persons will study any one of what we may perhaps without offence call the minor languages, still we need knowledge of these countries and a small but efficient supply of persons having a practical mastery of the vernacular of each. Public support has been entirely insufficient in the past. A few students, moved by some personal interest or impulse, have made themselves expert in this speech or in that, but no system exists to afford opportunities for study of the minor languages, while such facilities as may be available are little known and difficult to find. Collectively and individually these languages merit far more attention than they have hitherto received, especially in view of the new Europe which may arise from the ashes of the old. In this connexion we must once more point out that the great obstacle to language study, ancient or modern, is the discouragement which results from its unsuccessful pursuit at school. When schools have learned to concentrate their efforts on fewer languages, and refuse to organise failure in three or more, the desire to learn other tongues than our own will be much more common than it has been hitherto. That desire may come from individual need, or the expectation of profit, or the wish for information; it may even be born of mere curiosity; but where it exists it will not infrequently redound to the public advantage. We therefore recommend that there be established in London an Institution, similar in purpose to the School of Oriental Studies, to organise and facilitate the study of the greatest possible number of European tongues. Opportunities should be given therein for evening study, and also where desired for intensive study during the day not only of the several languages, but of the countries, their geography, their resources, their industries, and everything concerning them that is of potential value. While the London School of Economics should provide for the detailed study of the economics of the principal European countries, North and South America, Asia, and Africa, such a London School of European languages as we suggest might provide similar information and instruction for those smaller units, every one of which would repay systematic and alert investigation by a speedy return of national profit as well as by national illumination. The relation of the new school to the University of London would naturally call for careful adjustment, so as to obviate all risk of overlapping, of harmful rivalry, or of discouragement to the very hopeful activity recently shown by the London Colleges. And we should hope to see affiliated institutes springing up in some of the great provincial centres, each limiting itself to a particular language or group of languages in which the town where it was situated was specially interested. The Scandinavian group, to take a single example, would be at home in Hull, in Newcastle, or in Leith. (§§178, 181.)


71. We have devoted some little attention to artificial languages. Of all those hitherto invented Esperanto has up to the present achieved the greatest success. It is said to number 300,000 students spread all over the world, and it has its own scientific review. That a skilfully constructed language like Esperanto is easier to learn than any natural language can hardly be contested. All difficulties of accidence, syntax, pronunciation are cut down to a minimum. There are no exceptions and no idioms; the logic of language is reduced to very simple terms. It is only necessary to master a few rules and principles; the rest is a question of vocabulary. It has been represented to us that Esperanto would provide for those who have not the time or the ability to acquire a natural language some part of the logical discipline which language study affords, and also that, if taught in Elementary Schools, it would form a useful basis for the study of natural languages in after years. These are interesting propositions, but they have not as yet been established by sufficient experiment. As regards the first, it might be held that the promised advantages could be more effectively obtained through the systematic and intelligent teaching of English. As regards the second, there is some reason

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to fear that in the absence of opportunities for practice - and in the case of the pupils of Elementary Schools such opportunities would be rare - the ease with which Esperanto had been acquired would find a counterpart in the readiness with which it was forgotten. On the other hand, in certain eventualities it might conceivably come to hold a prominent place in the work of Continuation Classes.

72. The general position appears to us to be as follows. Any well-devised artificial language will enable two or more persons to communicate with each other on all the more ordinary topics of life with a minimal expenditure of time and effort. We were, therefore, not surprised to be informed that Esperanto has been very useful for international conferences and congresses. But for commerce and for scientific publications, in which the greatest utility of all artificial language should lie, two things appear to be necessary; a much more extended knowledge and use of the language, and a technical vocabulary precise and highly developed in many fields. Neither of these requisites is likely to be attained unless the Governments of the world, or of the most enlightened parts of the world, unite to provide instruction and to subsidise the work of lexicography and the translation of important scientific works into the universal language selected. Even in natural languages technical dictionaries are commonly found unsatisfactory; and it may be doubted whether an effective technical vocabulary can be constructed except by the constant use and wont of a community continually engaged in the technical processes and investigations. But, in view of the great general benefits which would result if some universal language could be used for commerce between nations, and if thereby scientific publications could be made perfectly intelligible to all peoples, this doubt should not be allowed to bar serious and hopeful enquiry. The further investigation of these questions lies beyond our scope; but it might well be worth the while of the Government, in concert with our Allies, to appoint a Committee to enquire into the potentialities of artificial languages such as Esperanto and its rivals. A universal language needs stability, and this cannot be attained unless by some extensive international agreement. At the present time we understand that Ido, which may or may not be superior to Esperanto, imperils such common accord as Esperanto had achieved. Schisms of this kind can only be prevented by authority competent to approve or reject suggested additions and improvements. Of course, no artificial language can have the individuality, the associations, and the inherent charm of a natural language; it is therefore unlikely that any artificial language can ever have much literary value. But these things are not needed for commerce or for science, for which certainty, precision, and elaboration are the principal requirements.


73. Instruction may be in this country or abroad; if in this country, it may be given at home, or in schools, or in Universities, or in institutions organised for the education - either part-time or intensive - of adolescents and adults. The nature of the instruction must vary according to the purpose that it is intended to serve, and according to the age and previous training of the pupils or students. The most essential distinctions are between Modern Studies as a part of education, Modern Studies as a means to the increase and dissemination of systematised knowledge, and specialised instruction designed with the single aim of teaching a language. We propose to deal with means of instruction under the several heads indicated.


74. The practice of engaging foreign nurses and governesses for children in their early years is perhaps less prevalent than it was a generation or two ago. Mr. Tarver of Eton, giving evidence before the Public Schools Commission in 1862, said that almost all of his pupils had learnt something of French before they came to school; and the context plainly shows that it was home instruction which he had in view. Nowadays it is probably otherwise, and the change is not altogether for the better. Beyond doubt the easy use of a living language is most readily acquired by imitation during infancy and the years immediately succeeding. Such early familiarity with one or two foreign languages, if acquired under good conditions, may be of great value, provided that it be followed up by systematic instruction as soon as the child is ready to receive it. It furnishes something which no school, however good, can supply. Early training of the ear and the organs of speech to distinguish and form a great variety of sounds gives keenness to the sense and flexibility to the mechanism. It creates a language habit which may indeed be lost through disuse, but which, if maintained by subsequent practice and instruction, will free all foreign tongues of the terrors and bewilderment which attend the later initiation of the novice. The fear that the child's English may suffer by confusion with the foreign idiom seems to have little ground if due care is taken. On the other hand, nurses and governesses are not always good models of speech and pronunciation; they may tolerate faulty sounds and inaccurate modes of expression; they may be more anxious to learn English themselves than to accustom their charges to the foreign language. Without skilled vigilance home instruction leads to disappointment; even if successful at the outset, it must be methodically followed up; the child must be encouraged to read, and trained to accurate writing and observation; bad instruction at school may speedily destroy most of the good effects. Yet home instruction wisely supervised has been of inestimable value to many; and its neglect by parents who could well afford to give their children the advantages it brings is part of the general indifference to the value of knowledge and accomplishments, and a symptom of the low esteem in which Modern Studies have been held. It has been suggested to us that the difficulties which parents often

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experience in securing for their young children foreign governesses satisfactory both in character and in capacity might be to some extent met by the establishment of kindergartens carried on in a foreign language by skilled teachers of high qualifications. Under favourable circumstances such a kindergarten as is contemplated might be successful, and evidence was laid before us of encouraging experiments on these lines.


75. That any modern language can best be learned in the country where it is spoken is a truism; but it is a truism that requires some qualification. The more the student knows when he goes abroad, and the greater his desire to learn the language, the more rapid and satisfactory will be his progress. A thorough training in language, though it be not the language immediately in question, is of great assistance; thus experience has proved that a thorough training in Latin and Greek may afford an excellent basis, provided the student has not let the years go by in which the ear and the organs of speech can best be trained to exotic sounds. Again, Britons in foreign surroundings are apt to seek British society; thus they lose a part or even the whole of the desired advantage. We are informed, and can readily believe, that the usefulness of the holiday courses for teachers which have been held on the Continent was greatly diminished because the British students inevitably spent their leisure in each other's company; except in hours of organised instruction, France and the French slipped into the background. The British student abroad should, so far as possible, avoid all British associations, and deliver himself entirely to the influence of his new environment. Reading, theatres, sermons, lectures, conversation - all these are good; but a chief part of the benefit is to be derived from the unconscious assimilation of the ubiquitous speech of the country. British citizens have shown little of the zeal displayed by Germans, Swiss, Danes, Swedes, Dutchmen, in accepting posts abroad with low remuneration in order to acquire the language and to get profitable knowledge of the country. Moreover, in Germany at least, even when they have offered themselves, there has been little disposition to welcome them. But in the most favourable circumstances the number of Britons who could by any means contrive to spend any long period abroad is small compared with the number who require instruction. And even for those who can go to foreign countries, it is most desirable that a good foundation in the language should first be laid at home.

76. Nevertheless, if a high standard in Modern Studies is to be established, it is necessary that foreign residence should be systematically facilitated and encouraged. School children should be taken whenever possible for journeys in easily accessible parts of the Continent, such as France or Belgium or Holland; though they may not add much to their knowledge of the language, their minds will be opened and some of their prejudices removed; the foreign country and the foreign people will be seen as a reality. The interchange of children between foreign homes and British, if carried out with all due precautions, may be of great value. It may even be possible to organise an exchange of pupils among schools. It is still more important that teachers of foreign languages should spend at least a year in the foreign country before they take up their duties. We have already noted (§21) that in Scotland this has been for some time an essential requirement for all who aim at a special qualification. As a means to the end in view, the interchange of Assistants between British and foreign schools, successfully initiated before the war by the Gilchrist Trust, and afterwards taken up by the central educational authorities in England and in Scotland, should be carried further when peace is restored. Facilities for teachers to return to the foreign country from time to time to refresh and increase their knowledge should be granted. We note with satisfaction that at the Naval Colleges teachers of modern languages receive an annual grant for residence abroad. Local authorities and wealthy schools should, whenever possible, allow to teachers of Modern Studies a periodical year or term of leave for study abroad. Students at the University should spend their long vacations abroad, and should endeavour to reside in a foreign University for at least one term before graduation. The interchange of professors, already carried out before the war between St. Andrews and Bordeaux, should be advantageous; although a British professor will be most useful abroad as a teacher of English, and a foreign professor here as a teacher of his own language, which renders a simple interchange of functions difficult; while the staffing at home and abroad may not often be sufficient to allow for a temporary gap in one or the other department. In 1916 n French Committee, set up by the Garton Foundation, put forward admirable proposals for the assistance of British students in France, and suggested similar arrangements in England. They also recommended other means by which closer relations should be established between the schools and Universities of the two countries. Their suggestions have been brought by us to the notice of British Universities and deserve the most cordial consideration. We are glad to be informed that in the course of 1917 the Committee set up by the Royal Society of Literature "for promoting an intellectual entente between the Allied nations" has Initiated a project to found British institutes in the Allied countries and to invite the establishment of similar foreign institutes in Great Britain. As proposed, such institutes would be of the greatest assistance in the coordination and effective realisation of all these forms of educational collaboration and would serve admirably as centres for the systematic study of the intellectual life of other countries. But all such devices, however useful and necessary, are supplementary to the main work of instruction: they are not sufficient in themselves. It is idle to urge, as is sometimes done, that language teaching in schools and Universities can be neglected, because languages are most easily learnt in the foreign country. If the standard of Modern Studies is to he raised, thoroughly competent and sufficient teaching must be provided in this country.

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77. In schools where, as under present conditions, children do not remain beyond the age of fourteen, and often not so long, there are too many things to be taught to leave room for a foreign language. If it be true that many children "mark time" in the higher standards of elementary schools, this shows defective organisation; it shows that necessary subjects like English, Arithmetic, Geography, Drawing, and History, are not carried so far as they should be; it does not show that there are spare hours which should be given to French. The position may be greatly changed if part-time instruction is made compulsory up to eighteen years of age. But little can be done until there is a larger and a better supply of qualified teachers of modern languages; to-day the number available is insufficient even for other needs. Nor is it reasonable to expect that any great proportion of teachers destined for Elementary Schools can ever be properly trained for foreign language work; the modicum of French that is included as an optional subject in the ordinary Training College course is intended to widen the general education of the students, not to be a serious preparation for teaching the language to others. But among the many electing to take it there may be some who either there or at the Secondary School which they previously attended may discover that they possess a special aptitude for language study. Opportunities should certainly be given to the best of these to perfect themselves in a foreign tongue, after their normal training is completed. Meanwhile, in exceptional cases, as in some 'Central Schools' and in some 'Higher Elementary Schools' where pupils stay until fifteen, good results are secured in French. So far as our evidence goes, the proficiency attained is mainly in the spoken language, but by the development of school lending-libraries it should also be possible to encourage the best pupils to develop a taste for reading French books, and thus fit them to carry on their own education for themselves. No doubt the French teaching has in itself much educational value; but its chief profit must be lost unless the pupils, after leaving school, continue their studies by evening or day classes and by private study.

78. We heard many complaints that pupils who pass from Elementary Schools into Secondary Schools are completely ignorant of English grammar, and therefore handicapped in the attack of a foreign language. These complaints came chiefly from England, but we understand that they are frequently heard in Scotland also. In the old days formal grammar - analysis, parsing, and so on - was no doubt pressed unduly in Elementary Schools; and the prevailing opinion of the Board of Education, as well as of the Scotch Education Department, appears to be that the teaching of English in Elementary Schools can be satisfactorily carried on with little or no attention to the terminology and analytical conceptions of grammar. The underlying principle is obviously that stated by the late Sir John Seeley in his evidence before the Schools Inquiry Commission of 1864: "English ought not to be taught to boys as a language, but as their language; not curiously and scientifically, but artistically, practically, rhetorically. The object is to train in boys their gift of speech, to teach them to use it more freely, more skilfully, more precisely, and to admire and to enjoy it more when it is nobly used by great authors. The merely grammatical part should therefore be passed over lightly; the antiquarian part might be omitted altogether; the principal stress should be laid upon composition."

79. It may be that the reaction against excessive grammar has been carried too far. We are not inclined to offer any opinion on that point. But we consider that the task of laying any but the foundations of grammatical knowledge may be reasonably imposed on the teaching staffs of the Secondary Schools, provided their pupils come to them not later than twelve; those who enter with or without scholarships between thirteen and fourteen present a more difficult problem, in which ignorance of grammar is not the only element (§110). On the other hand, we feel very strongly that the teaching of English in schools of all kinds should not be confined to reading and written composition; it should include practice in correct and ready speech. There is a movement for the introduction of the phonetic teaching of English into Elementary Schools; and this, if it is successful, should assist the teaching of French and other living languages in Secondary Schools. But phonetic teaching, if bad, is worse than none at all; and good phonetic teaching requires more study, training, practice, and natural gifts, than is always understood. For the past ten years systematic instruction in phonetics and voice production has formed part of the course to be followed by all Scottish teachers, whether Primary or Secondary. In England for a series of years summer courses in phonetics have been held for teachers, and the regular teachers giving instruction in English at the training colleges have been encouraged to attend these courses, and many of them have attended more than once. As a result of this system instruction in phonetics is now given by regular members of the staff in most English training colleges, and we are informed that in many of them it is very good. The wider extension of sound phonetic knowledge thus rendered possible among teachers in Elementary Schools should be of assistance to most of their pupils who afterwards proceed to the study of Modern Languages. In any event, with or without phonetics, the requirement of clear, precise, and accurate enunciation of English in elementary schools is good in itself, and will facilitate the learning of foreign languages afterwards.


80. It is idle to attempt to decide whether the improvement of Secondary Schools or the improvement of the Universities is more important for Modern Studies. The Universities depend upon the Secondary Schools for a supply of entrants well qualified to take advantage of all that the Universities provide. The Secondary Schools depend upon the Universities for a

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supply of teachers thoroughly qualified in language, in scholarship, and in all the necessary knowledge of at least one living people. Universities and schools act and react upon each other; each is necessary to the other; any defect in either group will at once make itself felt in the other. But the gravest weakness in our system of national education as at present established in function is the insufficiency of Higher Secondary education. The provision of facilities for those more specialised studies which should be carried on between the ages of sixteen and nineteen as a preparation for entry into life on the one hand, or for further and higher studies at the University on the other, is relatively and absolutely inadequate for the needs of the nation. This is true even of Scotland, where Higher Secondary education is better organised than in England; and there, too, the results are seen in the Universities. The deficiency affects all studies; but it affects Modern Studies in a peculiar degree, since those schools which are best equipped for the higher teaching of Classics, Mathematics, Science, and History, are with few exceptions ill-equipped for advanced work in Modern Languages and Literature. Indeed the very conception of Modern Studies as they might be has but recently come into view. Only in a very few boys' schools has there been devised and carried out any course in Modern Languages, Literature and History that deserves to be compared with the best work done in Classics by many of the old and some of the new foundations. Even in girls' schools, in which History, Geography, Literature, and Modern Languages, have naturally had a more important place than in boys' schools where an older tradition is dominant, the conception of Modern Studies as an interdependent whole has not been firmly grasped. When this conception has been elaborated and carried into successful execution, it should come to earlier fruition among girls than among boys, for Modern Studies have always been more honoured in the girls' schools.

81. The Board of Education for England and Wales has lately taken a great step towards remedying this defect in Higher Secondary education as a whole, and in Modern Studies in particular, by proposing to subsidise advanced courses, under sufficient guarantees, in three groups - the Classical Humanities, the Modern Humanities, and Mathematics and Science. We welcome the new policy with satisfaction, and look forward to its expansion and consolidation; until its results have made themselves felt, Modern Studies will not begin to realise their rightful development either in schools or in Universities. We shall refer to this subject again below (§§101-104).

82. The wide diversity of Secondary Schools in Great Britain renders it difficult to indicate a line which all alike should follow. In England three main groups can be distinguished, the third containing two sub-divisions. We may place first the relatively small number of Secondary Schools for boys - Manchester Grammar School and some of the historic London day schools are typical - and the somewhat larger number or Secondary Schools for girls, where pupils are accepted at so early an age as nine, and where a considerable proportion of those who enrol continue their Secondary education to eighteen or nineteen, some of this last class afterwards proceeding to the University. Whether the youthful entrants are at once admitted to the lower forms of the main institution or whether their first years of school life are spent in a preparatory Department is not material, so long as the scheme of work throughout the whole period of nine or ten years is devised so as to provide an orderly and rational progression of studies, with sufficient elasticity to meet the different needs of the chief varieties of mind and taste. Under these conditions, which are completely realised only in day schools, systematic instruction, especially in languages, should have its best chance.

83. Closely analogous, so far as the normal age of leaving is concerned, is the second group, which is mainly composed or the foundations, ancient and modern, generally known as the Public Schools. These retain many of their pupils to eighteen or nineteen. Residence, on the other hand, does not begin until thirteen or fourteen, the preceding years from nine or ten upwards being spent by most of the pupils in one of the Preparatory Schools. It is true that, if the whole period from the beginning of the Preparatory School course to the end of the Public School course be reckoned as a single unit, the duration of school life in this second group is approximately the same as it was in the first. As it happens, however, the Preparatory Schools are not controlled by the Public Schools which they serve or by any other co-ordinating authority; they are greatly influenced by the Scholarship Examinations of the Public Schools, and they might be more influenced by the Entrance Examinations if these were conducted so as to require before admission an adequate and uniform standard of attainment in the necessary preliminary studies. This is not insisted upon, and therefore the training given during the early stage is not duly linked with that given during the later. Only a minority of the pupils entering the Public Schools have actually received a discipline which fits them to make the best use of their opportunities; such pupils enter about the middle of the school; the lower forms are cumbered with ill-prepared and intractable material. The case of the great residential girls' schools is not dissimilar. Some of them provide with their Preparatory Departments a continuous and prolonged course which ought to be homogeneous; but many of their pupils are admitted at an even later age than the boys who join the Public Schools, and after a previous preparation even more various and haphazard. Thus in a large proportion of the best schools provided in England education is broken and irregular; the period devoted to the Secondary training is satisfactory, but it does not as a rule offer a well thought-out and constantly progressive course. We shall return to the question of the Preparatory Schools presently.

84. The third and largest group consists of the great class of Secondary Schools mainly dependent on grants derived from taxes and rates, and under the control of the Board of Education and the Local Authorities. Some of these are old Grammar Schools, newly equipped and

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enlarged; some are new foundations - County or Municipal Schools. All draw a large though varying proportion of their pupils from the Elementary Schools at the age of eleven or twelve and in so far as this is the case their problem is comparatively easy. But many, perhaps most, of them admit fee-paying pupils at various ages and at the beginning of every term in the year. This confuses classification and makes the teaching of Modern Languages specially difficult; homogeneous classes and regular progression of studies are necessary for good progress in all subjects, but they are particularly so in Modern Languages. The group of which we are speaking comprises schools for boys, and schools for girls, and mixed schools for girls and boys. In the great majority of cases a large proportion of the pupils drop off at various ages before sixteen; in only a few does any considerable section remain in attendance to eighteen or beyond. This last variety, however, is important, and it is generally recognised that it must be strengthened in numbers, in staff, and in equipment; if that be done, it should have a great future.

85. In Scotland the conditions are more uniform. There is much less complication with private schools and with schools not under public control. Moreover, the national tradition, buttressed since 1872 by express legal enactment, has been singularly favourable to orderly development; no hard and fast line of "thus far and no farther" has ever been drawn across the path of the elementary scholar; as a consequence the links have only had to be adjusted, not to be forged anew. The average pupil who goes through the full course of a Scottish Secondary School enters at five or six and does not leave till seventeen or eighteen. Up till the age of twelve he remains in the Primary Department, where he acquires a sound knowledge of the ordinary school subjects. This foundation laid, he passes into the Intermediate Department and begins his first foreign language, being generally joined on the threshold by a troop of newcomers who have gone through the same preliminary discipline as himself in one or other of the Primary Schools of the neighbourhood. The Intermediate Course extends over three or, less commonly, four years. The Intermediate Certificate which marks its successful completion is therefore normally gained at fifteen or sixteen, when the greater number of those who secure it hive off to business or, occasionally, to the study of Medicine. So marked indeed is the exodus that a good many of the smaller schools do not find it worth their while to make systematic provision for carrying their pupils farther; they are content to enjoy the status of Intermediate Schools and to pass on to the Secondary Schools proper those of their scholars who aim at the Leaving Certificate. Two or, it may be, three additional years of work are required to obtain the Leaving Certificate which is at once the crown of the Secondary School course and a passport to the University. The Welsh system presents not a few points of resemblance to the Scottish, more particularly in its essentially democratic character. It is not necessary for us to discuss it in detail.

86. But, whatever the type of school, the problem of Modern Studies in Secondary Schools must differ according as the period of continuous education is not more than four years, not more than six or seven, or may be as much as nine or ten. If we disregard the great number of variations and divergencies the main factor affecting the study of modern languages is the length of the period during which education has a fairly consistent, homogeneous, and progressive purpose; by the test of this criterion we have three chief types to deal with: the schools organised for a three or four years course; the schools organised for a six or seven years course; and those organised for a nine or ten years course. These types are so far dominant as to deserve separate consideration, though few schools can secure a uniform age of entry, or make sure of retaining even their best pupils to the end of the standard period. But before dealing with the several types it may be useful to indicate more precisely the ends of language teaching in Secondary Schools, the limitations which are imposed upon it, and the difficulties which it presents. We may then be able to perceive the means by which definite and valuable results can be best obtained.

Aims of Language Teaching in Secondary Schools

87. Language teaching in schools has and should have a disciplinary and educative aim. It should train the mind, the taste, and the character. Language is a means of expressing thought, and the study of a foreign language reveals the anatomy of thought. Each language has its own modes of expression, and the contrast of and comparison of different modes of expression leads to a more accurate sense of logical processes and a closer observation of the finer shades of meaning. But there is more in language than logic. The laws of language are sure and valid, but they are revealed in speech and writing as the laws of nature are revealed in living beings - in a delicate harmony of balanced forces and blended qualities. The elements can be recognised, but the harmony itself defies intimate analysis. Therefore language training has not only a logical and intellectual value; it has an æsthetic and artistic value. The most logical of languages, as for instance Latin, is not mastered when the laws of accidence and syntax are completely known. The graces of expression, the associations of word and phrase, the native melody of the tongue, its rhythmical beauties, the fineness of its turns and close-knit combinations, can only be appreciated by instinct, feeling, and a trained sense; and this æsthetic and artistic training does more to mark off the educated man from the uneducated than trained intelligence or disciplined character. Finally, language training, by the concentration needed for the conquest of difficulties, should also impose an austere discipline upon the will.

88. The truth of this general statement will hardly be called in question. It follows that the discipline of a language is not simple but complex and progressive; and that it is better to have the full discipline of one language than a fraction of the discipline of several. The disciplinary value of Greek and Latin is often vaunted and need not be questioned; but the

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difficulty of those tongues and the careful manipulation of rules and principles necessary in all the stages of their acquisition are not their only or their chief virtues. Nor have Latin and Greek a monopoly of the desirable disciplines, although the view that they have such a monopoly was once held with a passionate earnestness that to-day seems well-nigh incredible. In 1861 Mr. Gladstone, a prominent member of the Government which appointed the Public Schools Commission, solemnly warned the Commissioners against what he called the "organic rashness" of putting forth a sacrilegious hand to touch the Ark of the Covenant. He wrote: "What I feel is that the relation of pure science, natural science, modern languages, modern history, and the rest, to the old classical training, ought to be founded on a principle, and that these competing branches of instruction ought not to be treated simply as importunate creditors that take one shilling in the pound to-day because they hope to get another shilling to-morrow, and in the meantime have a recognition of their title. This recognition of title is just what I would refuse; I deny their right to a parallel or equal position; their true position is ancillary, and as ancillary it ought to be limited and restrained without scruple as much as a regard to the paramount matter of education may dictate. But why, after all, is the classical training paramount? Is it because we find it established? Because it improves memory, or taste, or gives precision, or develops the faculty of speech? All these are but partial and fragmentary statements, so many narrow glimpses of a great and comprehensive truth. ... The materials of what we call classical training were prepared, and we have a right to say were advisedly and providentially prepared, in order that it might become, not a mere adjunct, but (in mathematical phrase) the complement of Christianity in its application to the culture of the human being, as a being formed both for this world and for the world to come."

89. Public opinion has changed considerably since these words were written. It is now universally admitted that every language has its disciplinary value, though in each the elements may be somewhat different. There are no easy languages; it is merely that the difficulties of each are differently distributed. But no language attains its full disciplinary value until the initial stages have been passed, until it can be used freely and accurately for reading and writing, and if it be a living language for speaking. Moreover, the discipline of any study becomes more efficacious when the pupil's will is enlisted for his own self-discipline, when his effort is maintained by spontaneous interest and steady perceptible progress and such a compelling interest can only be aroused when the language is recognised as a means to higher ends. Literature, history, and all the multifarious knowledge of a people, are inaccessible until the language can be easily read. Thus, whether for training of the mind or the taste or the artistic faculties or the character, or for the increase of knowledge, the full discipline of language does not come into operation until the rudiments have been left behind. Further, it is far better to get the higher discipline of one language than such training as can be given through the rudiments of three or four, and we shall be justified in laying it down as a principle that no pupil in any school should begin a second language until a good prospect is disclosed that he or she has the capacity, and will have the time, to make adequate progress with the first. Adequate progress in a living language may be said to have been made when the pupil is able to speak the language with accuracy and fluency on familiar topics, to read the best authors easily and with pleasure, and to write satisfactory exercises of any simple type. In a dead language adequate progress is registered when the pupil can read with relative facility and with satisfaction memorable works, a stage which he cannot have reached until he is able to compose accurately sentences illustrative of the chief rules of syntax and of accidence. If the principle here laid down were observed, fewer languages would be learnt by the majority of pupils; but many would come under the higher discipline where few at present get full benefit even from the lower.

90. The practical aims of language teaching point to the same conclusions. If language teaching in schools has any practical value, that value can only be realised if the pupil after leaving school has reached a point from which he can advance by his own private study. If he has learnt two or more languages badly, it is unlikely that he will have any desire to pursue any of them further in after life. Moreover, one practical end of teaching living languages in schools is that the pupils, having come to understand how a language may be acquired and what are the essential conditions of success, may be thereafter the better able and the more inclined to learn other languages for themselves as need or impulse may prompt. If a pupil has succeeded in learning one language, he knows that it can be done and how it is done. A second language will present to him an interesting problem, a pleasing adventure. But if he has tried to learn two or more languages and has failed in all, he will assume that he has no gift for language and abandon hope of success. We can never by school teaching provide for all the language needs of the nation. We can only turn out school pupils well trained in one or more languages and therefore prepared to make the best use of private study and of any chances of instruction and practice that may present themselves. Both the practical and the educational aims point to the conclusion that too many languages are often attempted, and that better results would be attained by more concentration.

91. If this conclusion is valid, it is plainly undesirable to start pupils on two foreign languages at the same time. Before trial, we must not assume that any individual in a beginners' class is fitted to attempt a second language either then or later. Each language will interfere with the other, and both will suffer. The result will often be confusion and mental strain. As a rule, after the beginning of the first foreign language two years should elapse before the second is taken up. This interval will also allow time to discover whether the pupil shows aptitude for language at all, if he does not he should be confined to the one, or abandon the study of foreign languages altogether. In schools where the majority of pupils do not stay for more

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than four years, it may be advantageous that, after due trial, a certain proportion should be entirely relieved of language study, and should concentrate their attention on English and the various other subjects which cannot be neglected in such schools. If some measure of solid achievement in one language can be attained, time and effort will not have been wasted; but time is scanty and effort must be concentrated; it must not be dissipated. A pupil may have very useful abilities and yet be incapable of learning any foreign language. After a full trial his time and effort should be devoted to other studies. In the curriculum of such pupils the study of English might be much more fully developed than it is at present, and might conceivably include such elementary instruction in Latin as would be directly helpful to that study. We have heard many varying estimates of the proportion of boys and girls who show on trial no faculty for language; there is certainly some small fraction that lacks this capacity though in other respects well endowed. There may also be a few who from tone-deafness or some other cause are unable to benefit from the oral teaching suitable to living tongues; these might do better if their energies were devoted to acquiring a sound reading knowledge of some foreign tongue; and, in certain cases, a change of language may lead to good results.

92. What language should be first begun? Speaking generally, we may say that if only one language can be learnt, it should be a living language. Living languages open more gates, and are more likely to be pursued in after-life. If therefore there is a probability that the first language will be the only one, then it should be a living language. We have decided that French should hold for Britons a unique position; among living languages French is for us beyond question the most important. But it is not necessary that the first living language should be French in all schools. There may be districts and there may be schools in which German or even Spanish or Italian may be preferable, but these will be a minority introducing a healthy diversity. Nor do we wish to exclude the choice of Latin as the first language; but this should only be chosen in schools where the majority of pupils will go on afterwards to a second language, preferably to Greek. It does not seem desirable that pupils who are to learn only one language should study Latin, which would deprive them of their only chance of becoming familiar with a living language during the years when living languages are most easily learnt.

93. Nor do we wish to lay down any fixed rule for the second language in schools in which a second language is and ought to be commonly studied. We have been urged to declare that where a second language is taken up it should always be Latin. We are not inclined to underrate the value of Latin, which provides an admirable discipline in the logic of language, is the key to a whole group of European tongues, and is a great help in the study of English. On the other hand we consider that the study of Latin should not be backed by any kind of compulsion. If it were imposed on all schools teaching a second language, living languages would be placed at a disadvantage. Before the war German suffered by the competition of Latin, which was favoured by some of the examinations giving entrance to the professions, and was also obligatory for the Arts courses of almost all the Universities. We find that Latin is no longer considered necessary for any of the professions, except the clerical; and we hold that it should not be compulsory even for an Arts course at any University. Latin has undoubted value for almost all literary studies, but so also have German, French, and Italian. We learn that the Board of Education have laid down that in every school area Latin instruction should be provided in at least one school. That appears to us reasonable enough, but it is equally reasonable that in one school at least of every such area instruction should be provided in at least two living languages. Unless that is also secured, Latin will still hold a privileged position, and we desire complete equality for the living and the dead. Where Greek is still compulsory, it cannot, we imagine, be maintained much longer in this position; but compulsory Latin in schools or Universities is open to the same, if not to graver, objections. It hampers the free development of Modern Studies in schools; some of us also feel strongly that by making a combination of Latin with French the line of least resistance the study of the Classical Humanities may be seriously discouraged, which none of us desire. In the Universities or before entrance to the Universities it drives students to uncongenial and unprofitable labour which is rarely carried beyond the worthless minimum of University requirement. We may observe here that the universities of Oxford and Cambridge, by requiring some trifling knowledge of two languages (and those who have examined in the First Examinations of those Universities know how trifling that knowledge is), ignore the common-sense principle that a good knowledge of one language is better than a bad knowledge of many.


94. We do not aspire to construct a model time-table for all Secondary Schools, or for all classes of pupils. We recognise that every school has its own conditions and its own problems and that these must influence the time-table. We recognise also that, within one and the same school, even during the period (roughly from twelve to sixteen) when the Secondary course should be similar in general character for all pupils in the school, the time-tables for the various forms and grades may advantageously differ. There are stages when it may be desirable that one or two studies should be pushed forward rapidly, while others for a while receive less attention; and there are also stages when the proportions of generosity may be with advantage reversed. Certain general principles, however, may be laid down. In formulating these we shall make no attempt to deal with these schools which have no afternoon hours; to obtain good results in modern languages the morning instruction of such schools must, so far as we can see, be supplemented by teaching or assistance given at home out of school hours.

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95. When a language is first begun at school, not less than one period a day should be given to it. Whatever be the length of the several periods, a total of four hours may in fact be regarded as the economical weekly minimum, and this allowance should not be diminished during the first two years. It should be remembered that six periods spread over a fortnight are worth less than six periods falling within a single week, because the longer interval between successive impressions gives time for each impression to fade before the next is due; the unconscious assimilation by which languages are in great measure acquired is thus less effective in proportion to the effort expended. In saying this, we are of course thinking chiefly of young boys and girls; the argument loses something of its weight when it is applied to adults and adolescents who by an act of will can keep their minds on the language during the intervals. In addition to the daily period a sufficient time should be allotted for preparation, say two or three hours a week. The second language should not be begun until the first is well established; when the second language is begun, a daily period should be given to that and four periods may be allowed to suffice for the first. These are minimal allowances, and fall far short of the twenty or more periods a week which used formerly to be given to Latin and Greek in certain schools. In spite of the lavish expenditure of time we do not condemn those more liberal hours, which enabled the better boys to make substantial progress. If the majority learnt little, there were many reasons for that, one being that two or three languages were taught to many boys who should have been confined to one. But in view of the insistent and justifiable demands of other subjects a drastic rearrangement is imperatively required. Our minimal estimate may in fact often be a practical maximum, and good results have actually been obtained in this way.

96. This estimate assumes that English (in which we do not include History and Geography) has its full share of time. English and foreign languages form an interdependent group; sound instruction and practice in English will help the languages, and the languages also should help the English. Yet, if the claims of other subjects and the time of the staff permit, something may be gained by giving play to that element of variation at whose advantages we have already hinted. Just as other subjects besides languages might profit by intensive study at some stage of the curriculum, so it should be well worth while to give eight or ten periods a week to a single language in some one or two years of the general course. Moreover, if there is (as we consider there should be) a considerable group of pupils who do not proceed to a second language, then there should be pupils in their third and fourth years who have spare periods, half of which at least might with advantage be added to the single language. This suggestion, however, is made subject to the reservation that in any circumstances all one-language pupils should give a part of their spare time to English in order that the indispensable power of expression by, and of comprehension of, the spoken and written word may be duly cultivated.

Advanced Studies in Secondary Schools

97. After the stage which is or should be marked by the First School Examination (i.e., after about the age of sixteen) some pupils will have shown a bent for literary studies, others for scientific or mathematical studies or for both. The latter should not abandon languages altogether, but should have systematic practice in the reading of foreign books. If they have previously learnt to speak and write one or two modern languages, so much the better; but in any event none of them who have any capacity for languages should be allowed to leave school unable to read at least one modern language accurately and fluently. The same is true of the pupils whose main studies are directed towards Classics or History. Where schools retain a substantial proportion of their pupils to eighteen or nineteen, classes for training in the reading of foreign books should he an important feature; and in our opinion the Second School Examination should test all candidates in the power to translate from at least one modern foreign language. Different papers might be set for the different groups of candidates, but the matter should not be exclusively technical. Those who pass or pass with distinction the translation test in two or more languages should have a corresponding endorsement on their certificates. (§§102, 202).

98. After the First School Examination has been passed, those pupils who show a bent for Modern Studies will give more time to this side of their work; but the increased time should be used for developing habits of private study. A generation ago at Eton the ambitious boys after sixteen paid little or no attention to work in class which in any case was exiguous. They devoted their energy and a part of their abundant leisure to the study of the Greek and Roman authors, and before they went on to the University many of them were very widely read. What was there done by force of tradition and emulation may be done elsewhere if the proper stimulus and encouragement is applied. We want our best pupils who specialise on Modern Studies in the higher forms of well-equipped schools to read great masses of the best authors; not only drama, poetry, fiction, but also history, travels, memoirs, letters, perhaps some philosophy, and works of general information. They should read them with an eye to scholarship and incidentally with an eye to scholarships, but also because they love them and are eager for knowledge. In a school thus organised a rich, catholic, and well-selected library of modern literature, history, and auxiliary works, will be the most important part of the institution.

99. The pupils who elect to specialise in Modern Studies should not confine themselves to authors whose merit has been approved by time; they should read chiefly the best, but the new as well as the old. To restrict students, for instance, to the classical period of German

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literature is to fill them with a false idea of modern Germany, to mislead them by a presentation of extinct manners and discarded standards. If they read the authors from various periods with a receptive mind, they will insensibly acquire that important part of historical knowledge which consists in familiarity with the manners, the ways of thought, the ideals, and all the atmosphere of a people as conveyed by its literature. But they should also receive by instruction the continuous story of the people since it began to be a people. The historical instruction will dwell more especially on the ages when the people had literary expression, for the history of a people that has no literature can only be imperfectly known. But, to take France as an instance, the pupils who pursue higher studies in French should receive some coherent notion of the age that gave us the French castles and cathedrals, of the history of the Church in France, of the French nobility, of the growth of the French monarchy and of the rise of the Tiers Etat, of the Revolution, of Napoleon, and of the developments of the nineteenth century. The last four centuries will be illuminated by a literature which reflects the undying but ever-changing spirit of the nation, preserving its identity through every metamorphosis. The history will present the outward fortunes, the inward evolution, the efforts and stresses, that moulded that spirit to its successive phases. Thus treated, the history and the literature of a modern people may do for our pupils what the history and literature of Greece and Rome have done for many generations of their most enlightened ancestors; it will enable them by degrees to build up for themselves an organic conception of an alien but a cognate civilisation, of the thoughts and works and aspirations, the successes and failures, of the people which framed that civilisation to satisfy its own higher needs. The like is possible for Italy, for Spain, and for Germany. It is true that the history of Germany is more chaotic and confusing, that the age of its literary expression is briefer and less fruitful, than others, yet both the history and the literature are worthy of intelligent study and comprehension. The vain ambitions of the medieval empire, its destructive career and its fall, the beginnings of a better way of life within the armed circuits of the German cities, the turmoils of the Reformation and the devastation of the Thirty Years' War, the slow revival of the eighteenth, and the vast outburst of energy in the nineteenth century, form a sequence which can be envisaged as a whole, and which in its last two stages is sufficiently illustrated by literature.

100. Such is our conception of Modern Studies, as they might be pursued in the higher forms of well-equipped Secondary schools. It should not be an impracticable ideal, since what has been done in the past through Latin and Greek can be done in the future through the medium of modern languages. But we recognise that, before the ideal can be accomplished in fact, much must be done by the improvement of university study, by the building up of a tradition, and by the development of the mechanism of learning.

101. The Board of Education for England and Wales has already in hand a scheme for fundamental reform of the scheme of Modern Studies in the higher parts of Secondary Schools and of the corresponding examination for the Higher School Certificate to be taken about the age of eighteen. Advanced Courses in Secondary Schools are to be encouraged in three groups: (1) Science and Mathematics; (2) Classics; (3) Modern Studies. This scheme first took definite shape in Circular 826 on Curricula in Secondary Schools, which is dated 1913. The regulations giving effect to the scheme are dated 1917; and Circular 1023, dated 5th December, 1917, reports the progress made for the first session of active operations. The scheme is still in the stage of first experiment; its outlines as well as its details may still be modified; and the latest circular differs in important particulars from the first. We are here only concerned with the third group of subjects - Modern Studies - and we cordially welcome the valuable support which will be thereby given to the developments which this Committee desire. The principles by which the new grants are governed make it clear that an Advanced Course in Modern Studies will be regarded as of equal rank with one in Classics or in Science and Mathematics. This recognition will do much to raise the esteem of Modern Studies in school education, to place the teaching of modern languages on a new basis, and to readjust and improve the balance and co-ordination of subjects throughout the schools.

102. Modern Studies are thus defined: "Two languages other than English, of which Latin may be one, with their literature, and modern history, including the history of England and Greater Britain". It is laid down that this and the other Courses "must also provide such instruction in subjects of a general curriculum outside of the group selected for special study and in particular in the English language, as will continue and consolidate the previous education." While the scheme is still plastic and malleable, we desire to support the recognition of English as a main alternative subject in the group of Modern Studies. English is intended to be a common element in all three groups; it is rightly required that all pupils receiving education under one of the Courses of this scheme shall, during the two or three years of school life following on the First School Examination, receive systematic instruction in the use of the mother tongue. But English language, literature, and history, taken together as a whole, appear well suited for higher study during the last two years of life at a Secondary School. English with a modern language makes a very valuable combination for those who are to be teachers hereafter. The same combination is also an admirable grounding for those who intend to devote their university years to the study of one modern country with its language, history, and literature. With the study for reading purposes of a second modern language (§97) this alliance of English and one modern foreign language would provide a very complete equipment for the university or for after life. We recommend to the further consideration of the Board or Education whether Higher English Studies at school should not be placed on an equal footing with the studies based on any other language.

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103. If this position were granted to English, it would remain for decision whether those pupils who studied English with one foreign language in the group of Modern Studies should be required to take another language as a subsidiary subject. If so, the second and subsidiary language would take the place of English language among the "subjects of a general curriculum" for which provision is to be made, under the regulations. We regard the acquisition of a second language up to a scholarly standard of reading and translation as a most desirable adjunct of the Modern Studies group; but we do not consider that it need be made compulsory; some other subsidiary subject may be equally desirable and more congenial to certain pupils. The position of Latin under the scheme is somewhat anomalous, and the Board have found some difficulty in furnishing a logical justification for its inclusion among Modern Studies. We do not wish to exclude Latin from the list of languages from which two may be chosen for the main subjects of a Modern Group. But we anticipate that Latin will ultimately find its chief place among the subsidiary subjects, where it will be most valuable not only as affording direct access to the records of the ancient civilisation on which modern culture is based, but also as a key to medieval history. Tho last words of the Board of Education on this subject appear to give a satisfactory definition of the place of Latin in the Advanced Course of Modern Studies. In Circular 1023 it is said that if Latin in the Modern Group is taken to be "of the same kind as the Latin in a Classical Course" it will be "left unrelated to the other subjects. To secure this relation, stress should be laid on acquiring the power of reading Latin rather than on prose composition or minute grammatical work. Among works of the classical period, those should be selected which have had the most important influence on the literature of Modern Europe; and provision might be made for the reading of some medieval and later Latin, particularly of works which are concerned with History, and are indispensable to its further study." In an earlier pronouncement the Board appeared inclined to recommend for school use works of medieval Latin in larger measure than we should consider suitable; but the restatement in Circular 1023 we are prepared to accept.

104. It is proposed to institute a new Higher School Examination, the conception of which will be directly based on the scheme of the new Advanced Courses. This will, we believe, be a most useful reform. The examinations which have in the past had most influence on the studies in the higher parts of Secondary Schools are the Intermediate Examinations of the Universities, and the Scholarship Examinations of the Colleges of Oxford and Cambridge. Both have unsatisfactory features, and both have done much to prevent a true view of the work which is suitable to schools. The Intermediate Examination is often too wide and heterogeneous in scope for the purpose which it is intended or ought to serve, and the standard in Modern Studies has not been such as to stimulate the abler pupils. The Scholarship Examinations have been too highly specialised. The Higher School Certificate might dispense its holder from the Intermediate Examination. The Scholarship Examinations should in our opinion cover the same ground as the Higher School Examination, but the award should be made as suggested in the Interim Report on Scholarships of the Consultative Committee, either for excellence in one main part of the Course, with adequate performance in the rest, or for excellence in two main portions or for general excellence, and in no case by the mere addition of marks. Thus may be adjusted the rival claims of the candidates in the Modern Studies group who are either mainly interested in the historical part of their work, or in the languages, with their literature. We shall return to this matter in paragraphs 151-8 below; those paragraphs must be read in conjunction with this.

105.We cannot leave this topic without pointing out that these groups of Modern Studies, as well as the existing organisations for applying independent tests to the modern language work done in schools, will be vitally influenced in their development by the methods of examination that may be adopted for the Second School Certificate. Methods of examination in modern languages are not at present satisfactory. It is to be hoped that the Secondary School Examinations Council recently established will lay down new principles and introduce new devices. The problem before them is of great difficulty. Language and scholarship must be an important element, but the last years of school life should not be devoted merely to language drill. On the other hand, examination in literature is perhaps the most difficult branch of the examiner's art, and there is no sound tradition that governs it. Examination in History has a better tradition, but for examination purposes History and Literature should not be separated. The test in History should take Literature into account as an important part of historical evidence. The test in Literature should link it to the history of the people to whose thoughts and aspirations it gave expression. We shall touch this again in our section on Examinations below. (§§208-210.)

106. Beginning with the time-table, we have passed to the use to be made of the time. The time-table is in fact merely a means to the best use of the available time; and accordingly the uses which the time is intended to serve must dominate the construction of the time-table. One thing is apparent. If our principles are accepted, if no pupil goes on to a second language until he shows good prospect of mastering the first, if no pupil goes on to a third language until he shows like prospect of mastering the second, if no pupil learns three or four languages save those exceptional few who can with profit study more than two languages at school, then the timetable will be less crowded than it is at present. Problems of organisation may be more difficult; the organisation adopted may be imperfect; but at any rate it will be inspired by definite and practicable aims. At present we feel certain that there are many pupils struggling with two, three, or even four languages, who would have done much better to confine themselves to one. This is bad for the time-table, as it is bad for everything else and for everyone concerned.

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107. No attempt should be made to obscure the fact that it is very difficult to learn and to teach languages, ancient or modern, in school. It is often said that languages should be learnt as the mother tongue is learnt. This is of course true; but applied to school boys and school girls it is not a practicable proposition. The infant has all its waking hours in which to learn its mother tongue; it has an irresistible need to learn its mother tongue; these conditions cannot be established in schools. At the best the average school-pupil has four hours a week in class and two or three hours of preparation out of school hours: he has no irresistible need of French or Latin; he can say all that he wishes to say more easily in his native language. Again, the infant has many teachers, whereas the school-pupil has only one at a tIme and him he must perforce share with his companions. It is necessary therefore to organise the teaching so that every effort may tell, that every period of time may be used to the best advantage, that every faculty of each pupil may be called into service. The intelligence must be enlisted; the memory must be impressed; attention must be focussed; imitation, observation, rivalry, must be stimulated. We therefore need well-qualified teachers advancing by similar methods towards predetermined ends. The work of each year should be defined; at the beginning of a new year the old work should be tested, gaps noted for subsequent attention, defects registered for remedy. All this requires a vigilant and capable departmental head, who should have leisure for effective supervision of the general activities of the staff. School-time is short, energy is limited; therefore there must be the strictest economy of time and effort; nothing should be left to chance; everything should be thought out. Yet every teacher should have sufficient liberty to develop his own individual gifts; the skill of the organiser is seen not less in the elasticity than in the clear purpose of his plan. (The supply and training of teachers is dealt with in §§186-191; and the question of the nationality of teachers is referred to in §151.)

108. The organisation of Modern Studies in Secondary Schools must aim at the homogeneous composition of classes. But in practice this aim cannot be completely attained. If the teaching of modern languages is organised in 'sets' homogeneous for this purpose alone, the language teaching as such will benefit. On the other hand, the teaching of history, the teaching of English, the teaching of geography, will inevitably be separated from the teaching of modern languages. This is not in itself desirable. We recognise that teachers of modern languages should be in so far specialists that they are masters of the languages which they are appointed to teach. We recognise the value also in a school of the history specialist, the geography specialist, and the English specialist. But, the splitting up of knowledge into water-tight compartments carries with it grave disadvantages; and we think that it would be a great gain if teachers of modern languages were competent to take at least some part of the history, the geography or the English. In any event, it is important that the teaching of all four branches should be carefully co-ordinated. One of our witnesses, a schoolmaster of great experience, said that the chief need of 'Modern Sides' was that the form system should be introduced in fact as well as in name. The 'set' system destroyed (he said) the esprit de corps of the form and could not be made effective for instruction, much less for education. The 'set' system, if carried to its logical conclusion, would in fact destroy the form system altogether; it aims at securing homogeneity of classes, but this may be paid for at too high a price. Some practical compromise must be accepted, some intelligent adjustment is required. No hard and fast rule can be laid down.

109. Classes, no doubt, can be constructed so as to be apparently homogeneous at the outset, but, as time passes on, differences will inevitably betray themselves, and presently the pack will no longer be running even. If a class is formed for beginners at the opening of a school year, by the end of that year some will have shot ahead, others will have lagged behind. At the beginning of the second year the superficial homogeneity will have disappeared; if the class be kept as originally constituted, the progress of the best must be retarded to suit the laggards, who will nevertheless be hardly able to maintain even the average rate of progress; if reclassification takes place, the risk of confusion as regards other subjects is increased. The plan adopted in French and German schools and customary from time immemorial in Scotland, whereby the whole class with very rare exceptions is promoted at the end of each school year, is open to the obvious objection that it may involve a strain on the weaker and be depressing for the stronger pupils. On the other hand the practice which prevails in most English schools of more rapid promotion for the best, slower movement upward for the weaker, is not easily reconciled with the ideal of the systematic progress of all the individuals through the whole course of work mapped out for the annual and terminal tasks of the several classes. Yearly promotion in block, terminal promotion of selected individuals, both have advantages and disadvantages; each teacher will probably and naturally prefer the procedure with which he is most familiar and will believe that its disadvantages are more easily remedied. These are some of the difficulties which attend the teaching of modern languages in schools. They can only be overcome by constant vigilance and by special devices to deal with individual problems. All practical questions are full of such dilemmas; the organiser of schools is not the only administrator who is forced to ride on two or more horses at once.

110. But there are some obstacles to good organisation which form no part of the essential elements of the problem. We may here refer to the Report of the Enquiry into the Teaching of French in London Secondary Schools, conducted by the Inspectors of the Board of Education in 1916, and to the Report made to the London County Council on the same subject later in the same year by their own Inspector. These documents have been published: they go with great minuteness into the details of the difficulties of teaching and the principles and aims which should govern it, and we recommend them to the careful consideration of teachers,

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Headmasters, and Education Authorities. The area which they cover is large, the survey is close and comprehensive, and the practical suggestions are many and valuable, although we are not prepared to endorse them all. We could not and we need not go over the same ground. But we must direct special attention to the confusion which arises, in the very important class of schools to which the Reports refer, from the advent of many pupils one or even two years after the normal age of twelve, from premature withdrawals, from the fact that not only each school-year, but each school-term, has its exits and its entrances, subject in appearance to no principle or control save parental caprice. If it were only that the teachers were subjected to undue strain and embarrassment, the evil would still be great; if the late and irregular entrants were the only sufferers among the pupils, this would still be unfortunate; what actually happens where these conditions prevail is that the teachers are endlessly harassed and that the work of all the pupils is hampered, with the result that their efforts fail of their purpose. As an extreme instance of the disorder which results, the Board's Inspectors mention a class of 33, in which 6 pupils had been learning French for less than a year, 13 between one and two years, 7 between two and three years, 4 between three and four years, and 3 for more than four years. Little useful work can be done in such a class. On the other hand the Inspectors report that in a few exceptional cases an adequate solution of the problem had been reached. What is possible for some should be possible for all. Uniform and concerted action is urgently required to abate the evils which we have described. These schools are chiefly supported by rates and taxes, and the authorities have the right to lay down general rules for age and time of entry, to discourage leaving except at the end of the school year, and to stipulate for a minimum period of attendance. Such a stipulation might conceivably be enforced by a stringent penalty, to be remitted only for good cause shown. Obviously if the new Education Bill now before Parliament becomes law, it will tend to increase the number of pupils in Secondary Schools who will remain to the age of sixteen.

Size of Classes

111. For the effective teaching of modern languages classes should be of moderate size. Individual teachers vary in their estimates of the number that can be successfully handled: the variation doubtless depends to some extent on their own capacity and temperament. It is probable, however, that few can manage more than twenty to the best advantage. Twenty-five may be an outside figure; thirty is certainly an extreme limit.

Hours of Staff

112. Teachers of Modern Languages who employ the 'direct method' are probably exposed to a greater physical strain than most of their colleagues. In their case twenty hours a week of actual instruction is perhaps the economical maximum, and for women teachers this may be excessive. Where they share in the teaching of other subjects, a corresponding relief is of course experienced. We heard a good deal of the intolerable burden imposed by the correction of written work; and it is obvious that time is better spent by the staff in careful preparation of the lessons to be given than in the superfluous and meticulous correction of many exercises. Two things, however, need to be said. Conscientious teachers are often very elaborate in their corrections; it would be better for the pupil if his errors were merely marked, always provided that due care was taken to see that he thoroughly understood them and was able to rectify them. Again, written work should be kept within reasonable limits. Traditional practice rather tends to exaggerate its importance. As a test of accuracy and of grasp of knowledge already acquired, a certain amount of it is indispensable. Its value as an educational instrument is much more doubtful; it cannot vie with the ear as the natural means of impressing concords, genders, order, and idioms on the mind. We shall have occasion to return to this point later when we come to speak of Method. (§§192-200.)


113. Generally speaking it may be said that the great difficulties or language teaching in schools can only be overcome by careful economy of time, thorough organisation of work, concentration of effort on the language or languages attempted, and careful classification of the pupils. These difficulties were not so apparent when twenty or more periods a week were allotted to Latin and Greek, though even then it was only with a small minority of the pupils that good results were obtained. Since those days, English, History, Geography, Science, Music. Drawing, Physical Exercises, Manual Work, have claimed and rightly claimed a share of the time. If ten or twelve periods a week can be given to languages other than English during the period of general education (say 12-16), that is as a rule the utmost; and only the most skilful use of the available hours can achieve success. But the problem must differ with the varying length of school-life in the different types of school. These types we will now proceed to consider under the main classes indicated in paragraphs 82-86 above.



114. Ten years may be taken as the period covered by schools accepting pupils at eight or nine and retaining some of them till nineteen; by the English Public Schools with their ancillary Preparatory Schools; and in effect by the Scottish schools in which there is no break of gauge between Elementary and Secondary education. With a full run of nine or ten years of continuous education inspired by a consistent purpose the best results should clearly be obtained;

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but it does not follow that languages should be begun in such schools at nine or ten, and there is in fact a strong body of opinion which would deprecate the teaching of languages in any school before the age of eleven or twelve. We will set out the arguments on either side, first stating briefly the position of the minority which will receive more adequate exposition in the Reservations appended to this Report.

115. Those who urge early beginning are no doubt greatly influenced by tradition; and tradition should not be hastily condemned; it is the fruit of long experience. Not more than a generation ago it was the universal rule that a boy who was to have the best education of his time would begin Latin at about nine, and Greek a year or two later. He would proceed in a leisurely and methodical fashion gradually to acquire these languages throughout the whole of his school life. If the system succeeded, he would have a good reading knowledge of Latin and Greek by sixteen, and by nineteen he would be a good scholar. By the way, he might or might not acquire some knowledge of French, and even of German; but it was not the prime object of his school to teach him any modern languages; if he learnt them he probably owed most of his proficiency to home instruction. To-day there is a strong belief that even if a boy learns Greek and Latin at school he should also learn one modern language. If he begins French at nine, Latin at eleven, Greek at thirteen, it is thought that he may still become a good scholar before leaving school. But if he begins French at twelve, Latin at fourteen, and Greek at sixteen, it is feared that his Greek will suffer. It is certainly very improbable that by nineteen the syntax and accidence of Greek will be to him as a second nature; Greek prose, to say nothing of Greek verse, will be impossible. The supporters of early beginning lay much weight on the strength of the imitative faculty in early years; they are probably right in assuming that it is considerably impaired before the age of twelve is reached. So much importance is attached to this early beginning that we have been told that "in the further development of the educational system one of the most pressing needs is a proper provision of preparatory schools with low fees for boys whose parents cannot afford and do not wish to send their sons to boarding schools at an early age."

116. Those who urge the later age for starting a language have in view the conditions of the great majority of schools. In the schools of Scotland and in those English schools which take a large proportion of their pupils from the Elementary Schools it is impossible to begin the first language much before twelve. The reformers deprecate the maintenance of two different types of school, in one of which languages are begun at nine or ten, in the other not much before the age of twelve. They contend that these different systems of organisation cannot both be right; herein they concur with the more conservative view, though what the conservatives consider right they consider to be wrong. They also point out the confusion that must arise in schools which admit pupils at nine and allow them to begin languages at once, if other pupils enter at twelve, or even later, as is commonly allowed. But their main arguments are based not on the convenience of uniform organisation but on psychological conceptions relating to the development of the youthful mind.

117. It is of the first importance, they urge, that no pupil should essay the difficult task of learning a foreign language in school until he has acquired a reasonable mastery of his own. He ought to have read fairly widely, to have had ample practice in composition, both oral and written, and also to have been made familiar with those elementary notions of grammar some acquaintance with which is a necessary preliminary to the systematic study of a new medium of expression. The years of school life which can be most profitably spent in this way are also, as it happens, the very years when the foundations of general education can most appropriately be laid. It is then that the imaginative faculty responds most readily to the stimulus of the narrative and descriptive methods which should form the basis of all historical and geographical teaching; it is then that an interest in Nature both animate and inanimate can most readily be aroused; and it is then that the creative instinct can most advantageously be given free play through the paint-brush or any other of the various forms of handicraft that are suitable for children. On the other hand, the mind is not yet ripe for the serious study of a foreign language. It has passed beyond the stage when speech can be acquired without conscious effort and by a purely imitative process, but it has not yet reached that point of development when it can in fairness be called upon to apply itself deliberately to the acquisition of a strange idiom. Consequently the early beginners soon cover the whole of the ground that is really open for children whose mind is not trained nor ready for any but the most elementary use of language. The teachers have to fall back upon a monotonous repetition of the rudimentary type of instruction which alone can be given. At first the children may respond readily and brightly. Before long they grow weary of what they regard as nothing more than a singularly uninteresting form of game. In the end they become stale; and when they are old enough to have their work arranged on a system that is regularly progressive, they have lost the keenness which a new study should call forth.

118. With regard to the Classical languages there is no sufficient ground of experience to determine whether they would or would not suffer if it became the practice to defer the beginning of languages at all schools until the age of eleven or twelve. It is possible that some parents and some schoolmasters would in that event elect to sacrifice a modern language, at any rate as a main aim. Such a sacrifice, as we shall point out presently, may be justified if made deliberately. We are by no means inclined to depreciate the value of the best Classical education, but its high value makes it likely that it cannot be won without some sacrifice. But with or without sacrifice it cannot be attained by the great majority; and in laying down general educational principles it is safe to think in terms of the average. It is probable that the average lost more than they gained when all alike began Latin at nine or ten and Greek soon after, and

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pursued them both in a leisurely fashion for nine or ten years at school. On our principles many of these would never have begun a second language at all, and the first language would probably have been a modern language. And it is with regard to modern languages that the strongest opinion has been advanced, and appeal is made to definite experience. The teachers of modern languages who are in favour of a late beginning have had scope to test the soundness of their ideas, and the Committee have been greatly impressed by what they have been told as to the outcome. They have been assured, by those who have tried both methods that, as a matter of practical experience, children who begin at eleven or twelve are able in quite a short time to overtake their companions who started two or three years before them, and not merely to overtake them but actually to push ahead, because of the zest which an entirely fresh line of study has inspired. Much wider possibilities are opened up to the really capable teacher. The initial stages can be taken more quickly; the work can proceed by more regular stages; the pupils can appreciate the definite grammatical principles which present themselves for illustration; and the way is sooner open for the use of well-graduated reading.

119. In what has preceded it has seemed convenient to bring divergent opinions into sharp contrast by the use of definite numbers. But it might be desirable to avoid even such a relatively precise expression as "eleven or twelve" and to define what is meant in perfectly general terms. This would have the advantage of leaving abundant room for exceptions on either side of the normal line. Put broadly, then, the position of the reformers is that it is neither expedient nor profitable to begin the systematic study of a foreign language in school until the child has reached a stage of intellectual development which admits of his having already received a sound training in the use of his mother tongue, as well as a reasonable discipline in the essentials of a wide general education. It is, of course, taken for granted that the teaching of those who begin late will be conducted on principles somewhat different from those that have hitherto been deemed suitable for the early beginners. To ensure sound and rapid progress, lessons must be frequent; a minimum of a period a day is essential. Again, phonetics must be employed to lighten and abbreviate the labour of acquiring unfamiliar sounds; the purely imitative method is slow, and, at the school stage, it is at the same time very unsatisfactory and uncertain in its results. Lastly, the lessons must be very carefully arranged; the reading material must be judiciously chosen so as to secure and maintain the interest of the form or set; and, while separate lessons in grammar as grammar will have no place in the syllabus, definite and methodical grammatical instruction must be gradually introduced on a plan which will make it certain that full opportunity is given for securing a firm hold on all that is of prime importance.

120. There is much no doubt to be said on both sides; but it appears to us that the conservatives are thinking more of the exceptional pupil and especially of the exceptional pupil who is to proceed later to the serious study of the Classics; the reformers are more concerned with the average pupil, and we are inclined to believe that the average pupil is not ready to begin the first language at school much before the age of twelve. It is one of the most vital problems of school organisation to create a scheme which will suit the average without hampering and depressing the brilliant exceptions. But it may in general be said that the brilliant pupil is more likely to suffer at school from too much teaching than from too little; good opportunities, a little encouragement, and a great deal of liberty, make the best régime for him. The average pupil on the other hand, even though he may have ten years of secondary education, will seldom make real progress in more than two foreign languages; he will therefore run no risk of loss if he delays the beginning of language until twelve. It is accordingly the conclusion of the majority of this Committee that those schools which have been wont in the past to set their pupils of nine or ten at once to the study of a foreign language, still more those which have imposed upon the great majority the study of two languages before the age of twelve, would do well to consider the whole question apart and decide with an open mind whether their practice is justified by results as regards languages and as regards education in general.

121. If the practice of beginning languages at school before the age of eleven or twelve (§119) were abandoned, the ten-years schools would be on the same footing as regards languages with the seven-years schools, and in fact certain general principles seem valid for both alike. Whether pupils enter upon a course of Secondary Education intended to last for six or seven years or for ten years, the majority may perhaps with advantage begin a second language; some few may learn three, and some perhaps even four; some while studying one or two languages in all aspects may achieve a reading knowledge of one or even two more; but a considerable minority will do best to confine their attention to a single language, and a few should drop the first language after a thorough trial. Those who elect and are permitted to learn both Latin and Greek should be pupils of marked capacity for languages and many of them may make useful progress with a modern language which they can carry further afterwards. But it is not necessary that everyone should know a modern foreign language, and for good Latin and Greek a considerable sacrifice is not too great. For bad Latin and Greek even a small sacrifice would be excessive. For those who have literary and historical gifts the essential feature of the seven-years course and of the ten-years course alike should be the concluding years when the study of literature, history, and language, is carried to a high point on the lines indicated in paragraphs 97-100 above. We must reiterate that in such schools Latin should not, in our opinion, have any monopoly as the second language. But, as a matter of fact, in the ten-years schools and in the Public School system as supplemented by the Preparatory Schools, the prolonged course of systematic instruction is not adjusted to suit the greatly varying capacity of the pupils for language. In no school of either type so far

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as we know is there any attempt to concentrate upon one language for all; on the contrary It seems to be generally accepted without question that all alike should learn two and the majority should learn three. The result is that the great majority carry no language to the point of full fruition. When the whole course of ten years is completed within one institution, reform would be more easy, if the principles of reform were accepted. But the composite system of Preparatory and Public Schools presents great obstacles, owing to divided control and the lack or any unifying conception. The peculiar constitution of this system, as well as its great importance and influence on national psychology, justifies us in devoting to it our special attention.


122. The schools that prepare pupils for the Public Schools are a most important element in the national education of England. As a rule they charge high fees, and many of them are admirably equipped on the side of material and for games; there is no reason why they should not be staffed with able teachers, and this is no doubt very often the case. They are under no sort of public control; they know what the parents want and they provide that. They are not subject to inspection by the Board of Education, though some had invited and undergone inspection before the war. The English Board of Education have included in the most recent issue of their Regulations for Secondary Schools a new article providing for the inspection of Preparatory Schools and for the inclusion in the list of efficient Secondary Schools of any which pass the test. Before the war the Board were preparing to increase their staff for the purpose of carrying out these inspections, but this development has been inevitably postponed.

123. As things are, we have little direct information concerning them; we heard evidence from the Association of Preparatory Schools; but our witnesses could only speak for their own schools or for schools known to them indirectly. However, the Association have addressed questions to a number of these institutions and we have received the summary of answers from 168. The following points deserve notice. The first language begun in 114 of these schools is French; Latin and French are studied together in 34; in 10 Latin is the first language. In 28 the first language is begun between seven and eight; in 96 between eight and nine, or as soon as the boys come to school; in only 2 is the first language deferred until the pupils are ten. The answers imply that a number of the boys have begun languages before they enrol. The second language is begun within one year after the first in 99 schools; but many say that they can specify no definite interval, since it depends on each boy's progress. The direct method is partly used in the great majority, not at all in only 16; formal grammar lessons are usually given at an early stage; on the other hand 142 use no phonetics. The time given to French is very generally adequate. About half of the total number of schools aim chiefly at reading and writing, the other half attach varying importance to speech; only 6 make it their chief object.

124. It seems that the attention paid to French in most or these schools may be regarded as praiseworthy, in view of the general scheme of their work. On the other hand in most cases the interval between the beginning of French and the beginning of Latin appears to be less than we think wise; and it seems to be assumed that all the pupils should study two languages, an assumption which we are by no means prepared to accept. Some years ago a Joint Standing Committee of the Headmasters' Conference and the Association of Preparatory Schools was set up; its first Report was dated 1910 and a new edition of 1916 is in our hands. The main principle of this Report is that "Greek should not be begun in a Preparatory School or elsewhere until a boy has reached a certain standard in English, Latin, and French, of which subjects English is the most important." With this pronouncement we are in cordial agreement so far as it goes; though we should desire that the second language, whether Latin or French, should not be begun until a satisfactory standard had been reached in English and in the first foreign language. The Joint Standing Committee base their recommendation on "the congestion of the modern curriculum". We base our view on the considerations fully set forth in paragraphs 89-91 above. The Headmasters' Conference affirmed in 1908 that "the average boy cannot undertake the study of more than two languages besides English before attaining the age of 13 years without detriment to the study of both." The Joint Committee come to the conclusion that the two languages for the average boy must be Latin and French. But even granting that the average boy should learn two languages we see no reason why Latin must be one of them. The Joint Committee say that "boys in the lowest forms of a preparatory school should not be introduced to Latin until they have had a sound preliminary training in English". We should extend this provision to French, and we are inclined to believe that our conception of a sound preliminary training in English would be more exacting than that of the Joint Committee.

125. We do not know how far the views of this Joint Committee have been carried into effect either by the Preparatory Schools or by the members of the Headmasters' Conference. We welcome the Report as a statement of enlightened though conservative opinion. But it has no binding force on the Headmasters; and it is they who control the situation, partly by their Entrance Examinations, but still more by their Entrance Scholarship Examinations. The Preparatory Schoolmasters are anxious to satisfy the requirements of the Entrance Examinations to the Public Schools; but these serve only for the classification of entrants and for the exclusion of boys who are obviously unfit for any part of the school. There are probably not many Public Schools that can afford to enforce a high standard for admission; and parents of the class of boys who attend them are too often indifferent to every form of learning. It seems fairly certain that the Entrance Examinations, so far as they go, tend to encourage the premature study of Greek as a third language, since "few Public Schools have made adequate arrangements for boys to enter Classical Sides without a knowledge of Greek". Therefore, as the Report puts it,

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the boy who offers only two languages besides English is "forced on to the Modern Side". On the other hand, successes in the Entrance Scholarship Examinations bring prestige to the Preparatory Schools and appeal very strongly to a proportion of the parents. Their influence is therefore much greater than that of the Entrance Examinations. The Joint Committee, quoting from the Curriculum Report of the Headmasters' Conference, say with emphatic repetition that "in a large number of Preparatory Schools the Entrance Scholarship Examinations of the Public Schools dominate the whole educational situation". They urge that "a reasonable standard in English subjects, Latin, French, and mathematics, should be demanded from all candidates for Entrance Scholarships to Public Schools". They say that "in a number of Preparatory Schools the education of the majority of the boys is sacrificed in order that the few may reach a high standard in those particular subjects which are of decisive importance in the awarding of Scholarships at some Public Schools". Such specialisation they regard as educationally harmful. They desire that "the standard of Greek demanded in Entrance Scholarships shall not be of an advanced character as regards difficulty or vocabulary". But we shall probably not be wrong in assuming that Latin and Greek are still "of decisive importance" in the awarding of Scholarships. In the model time-table suggested for higher forms in Preparatory Schools Latin has 9½ hours, French only 5. Greek is not mentioned, but if Greek be learnt at all it must obviously be learnt at the expense of some of the other subjects regarded by the Report as necessary for a general education.

126. It is certainly unfortunate that this form of education (by Preparatory Schools and Public Schools), which is no doubt for a few brilliant boys the best that has yet been devised in England, should be broken into two separate parts at the age of thirteen or fourteen, and that the higher institutions can only control the Preparatory Schools by giving them some relatively good advice and by the effects of their Scholarship Examinations which are admittedly deleterious. The two halves of the scheme have no organic harmony; the higher half influences the lower half, but not entirely according to its own desires, and to some extent directly contrary to those desires. Nor is the ideal of general education conceived by the Public Schools in itself satisfactory. Language is heaped upon language regardless of the fact that a great part of the boys pressed on to two or three strange tongues before they are fourteen will leave the Public Schools without an adequate knowledge even of their own. And the general education that Public Schools desire is distorted because of their intelligible but conflicting craving for an annual tribute of brilliant specialists in Latin and Greek, with some concession to mathematics. Modern Studies cannot stand against this pressure on the Preparatory Schools - Latin for all, and Greek for the best. It is at the Preparatory Schools that the bias in favour of Latin and Greek is fixed in the ablest boys; and once fixed it is retained. It follows, since the Scholarship Examinations do succeed as a rule in selecting the fittest, that the ablest boys are lost thenceforward to Modern Studies. And yet Modern Studies are at least as vital to the interests of the nation as Latin and Greek, and can never take their proper place until they have their full share of the best brains. The phrase "forced on to the Modern Side" is an illuminating index of an attitude of mind.

127. We are convinced that all Private Schools and therefore all Preparatory Schools ought to be licensed by the Board of Education and that the license should only be granted or renewed after inspection. But to make any such recommendation would be outside our reference and perhaps in advance of public opinion. We can therefore only offer advice which may or may not be taken. It is in our opinion a mistake to attempt to teach two languages to the majority of boys before they are thirteen. The exceptional few may be able to respond more or less easily, but even the most gifted of these might very well be content with less than three. We reiterate the neglected truism that it is better to learn one language well than two badly. The arrangements of Public Schools should make it possible to begin Greek there without loss of status or prestige. Latin should not be compulsory in any part of a Public School. If the present system of Entrance Scholarships to the Public Schools is continued, it should be possible to win these without any Latin or Greek by excellence in the other subjects included in the examination; these could be and should be made a sufficient test of ability.


128. One of the most disappointing experiments of recent times has been the establishment of Modern Sides in the great majority of our Public Schools. Apart from the contributory causes to which we have referred in paragraph 14, the root of the disappointment lies in the fact that the principle of such division into Modern and Classical Sides was wrong from the outset. Boys at a Public School should have in common up to the age of about sixteen English, History, Mathematics, Science, Geography, Music, Drawing, Handwork, and Religious Knowledge, or such of the above as are included in the curriculum. Since they have all this in common, the accident that some of the boys learn Latin, French, and German, others Latin, Greek, and French, is not sufficient reason for bisecting the school. We are not likely to underrate the importance of foreign languages, but we feel strongly that the ground of differentiation is inadequate. So far as languages are concerned, the classification should be into those who ought to learn only one language and those who ought to learn two or more, with a small section perhaps of those who need not be troubled with foreign languages at all. But, granted that the boy who chooses Classical Studies should be differently treated in substantial respects from his fellows who elect for Modern Studies, the differentiation should be carried further. If the Modern Side boy is fit to learn a second language, he should be free to choose a modern one. There is no need for him to learn Latin, though Latin may be useful and valuable. In actual practice, owing to the influence of the Entrance Scholarship Examinations upon the Preparatory Schools, in the great majority of cases the able boys are

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marked for the Classical Side before they enter the schools. The Modern Side has been inferior in ability, and still more inferior in esteem, with the moral effects that might have been expected. Finally, no adequate aim has been set before the Modern Side boy. If he elects in the higher forms to specialise in Mathematics or Science or both he has a laudable ambition; but there is nothing to separate the Mathematics and Science of a Classical Side boy from those of a Modern Side boy. But if a boy has a gift for Modern literary studies, only here and there has a school afforded any scope for his aspirations. Modern Studies as they might be do not enter into the system of Modern Sides; and the Universities have not thought fit to encourage them. Only the study of History in higher forms has received any outside stimulus, and of that we shall speak hereafter (§§159-163).

129. Modern Sides, however, have been established as a half-hearted concession to a half-hearted public demand; and an organisation at once more elastic and scientific can only be gradually introduced in response to more enlightened opinion. We welcome a hint conveyed to us by an eminent headmaster that some of his profession were anxious to abolish all separation of Sides up to the time of the First School Examination, and have heard with satisfaction that in at least four important Public Schools the organisation has been so modified as to discontinue the sharp differentiation of the school into Classical and Modern Sides. In one school in which French has been selected as the foreign language which all ought to know, English, French, and Mathematics afford the common groundwork of study in the lower division; in another school these subjects are combined with Latin to provide the common course which all will follow. In the middle portion of the school there is a gradual differentiation of curriculum leading up to the specialist courses of the Sixth Form. It may be hoped that these examples will induce other schools studiously and steadfastly to improve their Modern Sides; to rid them of the burden of compulsory Latin; to limit range of language study in proportion to the varying capacity of the pupils; to secure to Modern Sides their full proportion of the best brains; to organise Modern Studies on a worthy basis at the top of the schools; and to give the boys who excel therein good prospects at the Universities and afterwards. As the Universities improve, these prospects will be more and more attractive; and it will be more easy to get for the schools masters who have a wide view and a wide knowledge of Modern Studies in all their important aspects.



130. All schools are conservative - if for no other reason, then because the most influential members of the staff of any school must have formed their most important ideals, habits, prejudices, and conceptions, long ago, when they themselves were schoolboys. But not in every class of school is faith in the old tradition so dominant as in the masters of the Public Schools. It is a great tradition; and, if the masters did not fight for it, the boys and the "old boys" would take up the strife. But nevertheless great changes have taken place in the Public School system during the last forty years. These changes have been made piecemeal, but their purport deserves to be reviewed as a whole. Forty or fifty years ago the Public Schools existed to teach Classics and Mathematics. Classics came first; Mathematics were a bad second; other subjects so far as they were recognised were completely subordinate. Little by little some of the subjects then neglected have attained more prominence - English, Modern History, Modern Languages, Geography. The whole balance has been disturbed, and equilibrium has never been restored. It is a matter of constant but ineffective complaint that "the curriculum is over-crowded". If the curriculum is over-crowded, too many subjects must be taught, or too much time must be given to some of them. Can it be alleged that too much skilled attention is given in our Public Schools to History, English, Geography, Mathematics, or Science? We fancy not. Then it may be that too many languages are taught to the majority.

131. In the old days when it was generally believed that a liberal education could only be obtained through the medium of the Classics the preponderance of language teaching was justified. The wisdom and the artistic mastery of the ancients could only be fully comprehended by those who could not merely understand both Latin and Greek, but could use them skilfully. Therefore, no matter what else remained untaught, Latin and Greek were taught to all and taught with conscientious conviction. Although that belief is still maintained by many, its practical application has now been renounced by nearly all. But when it was most firmly held, only two languages were seriously taught; it is needless to observe that two were too many for most of the pupils, and that few even of those who were not recalcitrant or disheartened got further than learning the languages as such. Now even those who give serious study to Latin and Greek are expected to learn French as well, while those who aspire to learn French and German must also learn Latin because some element of Classical discipline is thought to be indispensable for all. Three languages are too many for the majority; two languages are too many for a considerable proportion.

132. But the old tradition has directly and injuriously affected Modern Studies. For a long time after French and German were introduced into the Public Schools they were taught like the dead languages and the results were very poor. Even now, though better methods of teaching are generally followed, the examinations in modern languages are modelled too closely on Classical tradition. Moreover, since the chief part of the boys in the old Classical days did not get beyond the study of the languages as such, it was thought sufficient that boys who passed on to the Modern side should learn the languages only, without aspiring to the historical and other knowledge of the peoples, or even to wide study of the literatures. If, as is often urged,

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the lower discipline (§§88-89) of modern languages is less efficient than that of the Classical languages, the more need to develop as early and as thoroughly as possible the higher discipline that may come through Modern Studies; the more necessity that every pupil should learn one language as well as it can be taught at school and as well as he can learn it; the more desirable perhaps that those who prove incapable should be allowed to get their discipline in other ways.

133. It is probable that the Science Committee will recommend that more time should be given to the teaching of Science, especially during the years when the basis of general education is being laid. If such a recommendation is made and carried into effect, time must be spared from other subjects that also deserve an important place in general education. We know of no means by which time could be better saved than by a more discriminating use of the hours devoted to languages at school, so that whether a boy learns modern languages or ancient languages or both, each individual should only learn so many as he can hope to bring to a worthy measure of fruition. To define more closely: all but the incapable should learn one language thoroughly for reading, writing, and, if a modern language, for speaking purposes. If any individual can learn two or more in this way, so much the better; but for any language - including Greek - after that selected for the individual as the chief medium of language discipline, a reading knowledge is the most important, and can be brought to scholarly perfection if a thorough training has been given in the first.

134. The exaggerated importance attached to a multiplicity of languages is especially prejudicial to the Preparatory Schools, and therefore to the Public Schools which depend upon them. These Preparatory Schools should lay a sound foundation, above all in English, also in Arithmetic, Elementary Mathematics, Geography, the elements of Science, History, and at least in one foreign language; and hand writing and spelling should not be neglected. Of all competitions held by the Civil Service Commissioners we are told that the Army competitions show the most unsatisfactory general standard in handwriting and spelling. Most of the candidates have passed through a Preparatory School and a Public School. While the Preparatory Schools are teaching all their pupils French and Latin, it seems possible that these elementary matters do not receive sufficient attention. It is perhaps too late to remedy such defects after a boy has entered a Public School; to demand that the Public Schools should teach handwriting and spelling would certainly seem inappropriate. On the other hand it must be in large measure the fault of the Public Schools if the Preparatory Schools do not give enough care to the rudiments; as it certainly is the fault of the Public Schools if their ancillary institutions teach too many languages or press on the better boys to the disadvantage of the average.


135. Some of the schools which rank as Public Schools receive a certain measure of State aid. Some of the schools which are mainly dependent on public support derived from rates and taxes admit a considerable proportion of their pupils at nine or ten, But, as a rule, the distinctive mark of the class of schools which we propose to consider under this head is that they take in the greater part of their pupils from the Elementary Schools not earlier than eleven and generally about the age of twelve. These schools fall again into two fairly well-marked groups; those which retain few of their pupils beyond the age of sixteen, and those which have a fairly strong upper part consisting of pupils who stay at least to eighteen and it may be to nineteen. We may regard, as constituting two normal varieties, a four-years course of Secondary Education, and a seven-years course divided into a lower and a higher part.

The Four-years Course of Secondary Education

136. The schools in England and Wales which provide only a four-years course are very important from the numbers of pupils both girls and boys for which they provide. The schools which offer a seven-years course have a large proportion of pupils who do not proceed to the higher course or any part of it. The Scottish Intermediate Schools provide a three-years course, though many of their pupils may extend their Intermediate course over four years. The Scottish Secondary Schools also lose a great many of their pupils after they have won the Intermediate Certificate. The position of Modern Studies in a course of school instruction not extending beyond four years therefore deserves special attention.

137. In England, at least, the four-year schools and courses suffer greatly from late and irregular entry, and from early and irregular leaving. We have discussed these evils and possible remedies in paragraph 110 above. But in so far as pupils entering between eleven and twelve have no prospect of remaining at school beyond sixteen, it is specially important that their energies should not be dissipated. It should be possible in four years to bring one language to a useful point with the majority; only with the minority can a second language be begun with any advantage. We are not prepared to say that even two years of school Latin if well taught is not of value. But Latin in the four-years course should not be allowed to imperil the success of the first foreign language, which will presumably be a modern language. The first language in such a course should have not less than a daily period throughout all the four years; and those pupils who after a full and fair trial seem unlikely to make useful progress should abandon foreign languages altogether. Two years should be enough for such a trial. If any languages are taught in such a course, it is above all important that one should be taught well. In some of these schools it may be desirable that during the last year of school life attention should be paid to the vocabulary and phraseology common to all commerce; but the commercial language is only a special part of any language, and instruction in it must be

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based on a sound general foundation; the specific language of individual trades and industries can only be satisfactorily learnt when the operations of the trade or industry in question have been learnt and understood through concrete experience.

The Seven-Years Course

138. The principles applicable to the seven-years course so far as Modern Studies are concerned are those stated in paragraph 121 above, but the need oF concentration on a limited objective suited to the varying powers of the pupils is more obvious in the shorter course, economy of effort and of time is even more imperative.


139. Most of what has been said above (§§80-138) applies to girls as well as to boys, and where the masculine gender has been used it has generally been intended to include both Sexes: But it must not be supposed that we consider that education for girls and boys should be identIcal. The matter of education must be to a great extent the same, but the proportions and relative values are different. There seems no reason why a wise differentiation of education for girls should not be decided as a separate problem. While the education of girls has not the same tradition behind it, it is not and should not be hampered by the same weight of prejudice and custom.

140. So far as Modern Studies are concerned, better results might reasonably be expected in schools for girls than in schools for boys; and, in fact, several witnesses testified that the general level of attainment in Modern Languages was, as a rule, higher in the former than in the latter. The reasons are self-evident. For girls Modern Studies almost invariably hold a first place. For them, English, History, Geography and Modern Languages are all-important; and, although in many schools Latin is, for the majority, the second language taught, English and French hold the first place. If a girl takes up Greek as well as Latin, it is probably because she has shown exceptional ability in acquiring languages; and she will have had a grounding in English and in at least one modern language. It fellows that in girls' schools teachers of modern languages rank higher in esteem than do their colleagues in some of the boys' schools; and that at the Universities a larger proportion of able and enthusiastic women proceed to Honours in English, French, and German. But in spite of these more favourable conditions, the actual results as regards modern languages still leave much to be desired. A sufficiently high standard of scholarly work has not yet been set except in a few unusually fortunate schools; the study of literature is too often confined to the reading in class of a limited number of works or portions of works (not always of the first order), together with notes on general literature from the teacher. It is rare to find an adequate library. There appears to be little attempt to give to the study of literature an historical background or to present to the girls some picture of the life and civilisation of the people whose language is being studied. For girls, as well as for boys, we would insist that a high standard in one language is of infinitely more value than an indifferent grasp of two or of several. In a word, if modern studies are already on a better footing for girls than for boys, much still remains to be done to provide a wide and scholarly ideal and a high aspiration.


141. The Education Act of 1902 gave to the Local Authorities of England and Wales, and not to the State, the initiative in the provision and organisation of Secondary Schools. Since that date Local Authorities have been for the most part too much occupied with the task of making provision of any kind of Secondary education, as well as with their other duties, to give much thought to the grading of Secondary Schools, and the differentiation of specific types. Nor has the adoption of the County and the County Borough as the Local area for Secondary education facilitated the task. The administrative County can, as a rule, only work towards a satisfactory organisation of Secondary Schools by cooperation with any County Boroughs which may lie within its area, and such cooperation has seldom proved easy to obtain; on the other hand, many of the County Boroughs are too small to handle the problem by themselves. Yet for the economic management of their resources Secondary Schools require to be graded according as they can or cannot make adequate provision for any form of Higher Secondary Education. Similarly, those that are recognised as fit to provide some form of Higher Secondary education require to be differentiated according as they can give a Higher Course in Classics, or Modern Studies, or Mathematics and Science, one or two or all of these. Secondary Schools not equipped for Higher Secondary education should also be differentiated within any area according to the special types of instruction that they may aim at providing; thus (from our point or view) there might be schools of this grade providing instruction in one language only, or in different combinations of languages. It might also be worth while to try the experiment of Secondary education on the lower plane without any foreign language at all; more highly developed instruction in English supplying the place of the foreign language. The new Education Bill now before Parliament may necessitate the further development of schools providing whole-time technical, commercial and other vocational education for the years between twelve and sixteen, and also for the years between fourteen and sixteen. and differing in purpose from the great mass of the schools which we now style Secondary. It is quite possible that in many of these schools there may be no teaching of foreign languages. Where, however, language teaching is provided, a good allowance of time must be given - four hours a week at least for a single language and a corresponding addition when a second language is taken.

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Otherwise the time allotted will be wasted. Differentiation of schools, whether on the higher or on the lower plane, is of very great importance as a means of meeting the ever growing demands for the admission of new subjects and for the fuller treatment of subjects already included. It will also assist in the economical distribution of the most highly qualified teachers.

142. The grading of Scottish Schools as Intermediate and Secondary seems to be satisfactory in principle; but there also differentiation of schools according to the type of education to which they aspired would conduce to economy and efficiency if it proved to be attainable. Some of the largest Authorities in England have already recognised some of the schools established in their area before 1902 as necessary and efficient for Higher Secondary education and developed them accordingly. In other great centres such as Liverpool and Sheffield the Authority has been led to provide out of its own resources for Higher Schools. But differentiation of schools on the same plane has not made much progress in this country, though in a few cities an effective start has been made.

143. To organise Secondary Schools in their relation to each other so that each may have recognised functions assigned to it in the area which it serves would require the cooperation of the Central Authority and the Local Authority, taking into account the needs of sufficiently large areas. It would also require the cooperation of Local Authorities one with another. Though some of the large County Boroughs may be able to grade and differentiate the schools, old and new, under their control, so as to provide for their own needs, yet the Counties in which they are situated may not be able to provide for County needs without the assistance of the Schools maintained by the County Boroughs. The system must be elastic. Shifting population, changes in the economic and social conditions of a district, the growth of a new industry, and new facts brought to light by experience, may necessitate the transfer of a school from one place in the organisation to another. Many difficulties must be surmounted, many conflicting interests must be reconciled or over-ruled, before a satisfactory system of grading and differentiation of Secondary Schools in Great Britain can be carried out; but until it has been achieved it must be a constant aim of educational policy.

144. Organisation on these lines would require provision of Scholarships and maintenance grants specially adapted to its characteristics, in order to secure that no pupil fit to pursue his or her Secondary Studies beyond the point marked by the First School Examination of the Board of Education for England and Wales should be prevented from doing so by lack of means. It would also be necessary to provide for the transfer of pupils to Schools offering Advanced Courses from Schools which offer none, or which do not at any rate offer an Advanced Course in the group of studies which the pupil requires. It should be the duty of the competent authority not only to make provision for the transfer of pupils when it is for their educational benefit, but also to exercise a constant supervision over the working of the system; and the competent authority for this purpose must be one which regards the organisation of an area as a whole, and is not too much identified with the interests of a particular School. It is conceivable that provision for transfer may prove to be one of the ways in which the great Public Schools may find their place in a national scheme. We do not underrate the difficulties which will arise through the unwillingness of one school to part with, and of another school to accept, pupils so transferred; but we see no other likely means of securing that pupils in all Secondary Schools who are fit for Higher Modern Studies may have the opportunity to pursue them. In Scotland the framework of a complete system of transfer between Primary, Intermediate, and Secondary Schools, was effectively laid down by the Act of 1908, and the system has been steadily developing ever since. Already it entails an annual expenditure of well over 100,000 from public funds and from endowments on travelling expenses and on maintenance.

The General Importance of Secondary Schools for Modern Studies

145. Before leaving this subject we must point out that the efficient organisation of Modern Studies in Secondary Schools is of the greatest importance for the ends we have in view. It is in these schools that the foundation may be laid for subsequent work, whether at institutes for the special study of living languages, or at the Universities. The due development of Higher Modern Studies in Secondary Schools is essential to the work of the Universities, and therefore for the provision of a highly trained staff of teachers for the schools as well as of Professors for the Universities. Moreover, it is in the Secondary Schools that a taste, or it may be, a distaste for languages is fostered; it is there that ability may be discovered, kept in activity, and trained. It is probable that few will succeed with languages who have not made good progress with at least one during childhood or at all events in adolescence.



146. The Universities are the keystone of the whole structure of higher education. To them we must look for the continuous rebirth and renovation of modern studies. In them should be consummated scholarship, learning, and the final product of research into every element of national life among the great peoples of the modern world. From them should spread the stimulus of that enthusiasm which comes from aspirations realised. By them must be trained, not only the staff of highly qualified teachers who are needed by every institution for the instruction of childhood, adolescence, and maturity, but also publicists, statesmen, journalists, administrative and executive officers for home and foreign service, and at least a proportion

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of those who are to be responsible for the national interests in finance, commerce, and industry. Without a high standard of knowledge and training in the Universities we shall look in vain for the men and women whom we need for a thousand specialised duties in the modern world. For such purposes we shall need to train, and train as rapidly as possible, a supply of Englishmen having various arts and experience but all having a competent knowledge of some foreign country, its language, and its people. For the training of these young men before they go out to a useful and, it may be, a profitable career, we must mainly look to the Universities.

147. During the last ten or fifteen years there has been a great improvement in the Universities with regard to Modern Studies. But in none of our Universities and in no branch of Modern Studies can the staff be considered even approximately sufficient. The salaries provided indicate the inferior esteem in which the subjects are still held. For instance, in 1913-14, the last normal year, the staff at Oxford, where the Taylorian endowment and organisation have afforded valuable assistance, consisted of a Professor of the Romance Languages, a Professor of German, three Lecturers in French, two in German; one each in Spanish and Italian, and one in the Scandinavian languages, a visiting Lecturer and an assistant in Phonetics; and the total stipends of these twelve persons including their share of fees were 3,385 7s. 6d., or an average of about 282 each. In addition there was a reader in Russian and the Slavonic languages, towards whose stipend of 300 the Taylorian Institution contributed 100 a year. The Women's Colleges maintained five tutors in French, and four in German. One of the Men's Colleges paid a Lecturer to instruct the general body of its students in modern languages, not for specialist purposes, but for the benefit of their various studies, while a second College had appointed a Lecturer to give regular instruction in French and German to undergraduates who were taking University examinations in these languages. There were thus in all twenty-four persons engaged in maintaining and advancing Modern Studies at Oxford: but if the stipends of the eleven last mentioned were reckoned with the rest it is practically certain that the average would be lowered and not raised. This is the situation in the richest and the oldest of our British Universities. It appears to us to need no comment. The best that can be said is that twelve years ago things were far worse.

148. When we visited the Universities we found the position to be as follows, reckoning the appointments as they were before the outbreak of war, irrespective of whether the holders were absent on military service or not, and adding the new posts which have been created since. In the fifteen Universities of Great Britain. including London with six constituent Colleges and Wales with three, there were:-

    French and German2
Readerships and Lectureships:
    French and German3
Minor Posts:-

This list,* it should be explained, takes no account of the nine Tutors of the Oxford Women's Colleges, nor of the College Lecturers at Cambridge, of whom four held fellowships in the Men's Colleges and seven, with three Assistants, were on the staff of the Women's Colleges. The net result is that in twenty-two separate institutions of University rank, none of which, excepting those in London, can give each other assistance, there were, all told, about seventy persons to teach French and everything that pertains to France - an average of little more than three apiece. It will hardly be denied that, in view of the importance of Modern Studies at the Universities, these figures show a striking inadequacy of staff. It is true that there are signs of improvement. Both at Edinburgh and at Glasgow, chairs of French and of German will be created in the immediate future. But at the time when our statistics were compiled, Cambridge, Bristol, and the four Scottish Universities bad no Professorship of French, while, in order to make the total up to fifteen, it was necessary to take in the Oxford Professorship of Romance Philology; Bristol and the four Scottish Universities had no Professorship of German; there was not a single Professorship of Italian, only two of Spanish, one of these created during the war, and one of Russian. The numbers were probably insufficient

*Since the table in the Report was prepared the Committee have been informed of the creation of the following new posts: French, 2 Professorships, 1 Lectureship; German, 1 Professorship; Italian, 1 Professorship; Spanish, 1 Professorship, 1 Lectureship; Portuguese, 4 Lectureships; Russian, 1 Professorship and 1 Minor post; Slavonic, 1 Professorship, 1 Readership, 3 Lectureships. Further proposals for the following additional new posts are under consideration: German, 1 Professorship; Spanish, 1 Lectureship; Modern Greek, 1 Professorship and 1 Lectureship.

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for the routine instruction of those actually studying before the war on a narrow basis of language and lIterature, since the University staff must provide not only for the needs of Honours Students but also for those of the Pass Students taking Modern Studies as one of the subjects of their course, and these in most of the Universities are many. If Modern Studies were extended, as they should be, to include the historical, political, economic, and other knowledge of the peoples to whom the languages belong, and if the number of serious students of Modern Studies came anywhere near the requirements of the nation, the deficiency even for French and German would be paralysing. For the other three principal languages of modern Europe, in only a few of our Universities does even a skeleton staff exist.

149. Nor is it merely in regard to numbers that the staffing arrangements are defective. In the Scottish Universities, for example, Lecturers are not represented on any of the governing bodies; and Modern Studies thus not only suffer in prestige from the absence of Professorships but also lack their due voice in academic counsels. Again, many of those who have the status and title of Professor do not enjoy the income that normally belongs to such posts; and practically everywhere the stipends allotted to posts in the departments of Modern Studies run low. In short, neither in salary nor in status, nor in conditions of work, nor in apparent esteem, have the teachers, on whom our whole system of Modern Studies depends for the advance and propagation of knowledge and scholarship, an enviable or indeed a tolerable position. The prospects of promotion are, therefore, not such as to attract students, who may further be discouraged if they reflect that at the date when our return was completed ten of the fifteen Professors of French and nine of the eleven Professors of German were foreigners.

150. The staff of our Universities can only be strengthened by degrees. It would be idle to create a number of Professorships in a hurry; time is needed to train up scholars worthy to fill them. As we have said above, to establish a second-rate man or woman in a position of great responsibility will prove in the long run an impediment rather than a stimulus to the studies concerned (§68). By all means this error must be avoided. On the other hand, we cannot afford to wait until, in the slow course of time, Modern Studies may develop by a process of automatic growth, and until posts may be founded by private benefaction or the enlightened emulation of Local Authorities. A definite policy is needed, to be adopted after mature consideration, to be carried out over a period of years, and to be guaranteed by the only sufficient security, that of Parliament. This policy should be embodied in a scheme providing for the establishment, within ten years from the conclusion of the war, in addition to all the posts that already exist and those that may be founded by private or local initiative, of, say, fifty-five first-class Professorships, - fifteen of French studies, and ten each for the studies concerned with the four other principal countries of Europe, - and double that number of Lectureships. At 800 a year for the Professorships, and 400 for the Lectureships, the ultimate charge would be 88,000 a year. The cost for the first few years would be light; but it is essential that the policy should be made known and fixed by irrevocable pledges, for the aim would be to encourage many of our most able young men and women to prepare themselves assiduously and earnestly for careers that would naturally lead to the posts to be hereafter created. The establishment of and the first appointments to, the posts should be at the discretion of a strong and competent Advisory Committee, not composed exclusively or principally of experts, but guided as occasion needed by expert advice. No appointment should be made unless a really first-rate applicant were forthcoming. Further, the new Chairs and Lectureships should not be uniformly dispersed over the several institutions, but they should be established where they would do most good - that is to say, as a rule, where the particular studies associated with each new foundation were most flourishing, and were conducted on the most enlightened plan. Thus one University might be strong in Russian, another in Spanish, and so forth; and localities would be encouraged to take their own part in promoting the studies which seemed to them most closely bound up with their interests. The new posts should be some of language including philology, some of literature, some of economics, some of history and institutions; but for each of them, besides high qualification in the special branch of Modern Studies, a scholarly knowledge of the language should be necessary, and at least two years' foreign residence, after graduation, should be regarded as indispensable. The same Committee would also be useful in apportioning the post-graduate Studentships, the Scholarships from the schools to the University, and other subventions, of which we shall speak below (§§158, 164, 165). The Committee should be authorised to receive donations and bequests, without hampering conditions, - except that it might be stipulated that the gifts were to be for the benefit of particular Modern Studies in a particular institution, and that the Government grants should not be diminished in consequence of any such gifts.

Should the Teachers of Modern Subjects be British or Foreign?

151. The question of the nationality of the teachers has been pressed upon our notice by our witnesses both in London and in the Universities which we visited, as well as by written communications. In particular, we have had the advantage of the conclusions reached by a Committee of the Modern Language Association. The question, of course, primarily concerns schools, and there it may be regarded as practically settled; for boys' schools headmasters were virtually unanimous; for girls' schools the consensus of opinion was somewhat less complete. Not only are foreigners found less effective for discipline, not only is it more difficult for them to exercise an easy and salutary influence over their pupils, but it is natural to suppose that the studies themselves will be more successfully presented to the classes by teachers who approach them from the British point of view. A foreign assistant is a most valuable supplement in a school where sufficient provision is otherwise made for the necessary class-work and superior control. The foreigner can best be

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used, under direction, for setting before beginners a model of pronunciation and intonation, for conversation classes with the more advanced pupils, and for the correction and criticism of advanced composition - at all events of free composition, since translation into a foreign language requires accurate knowledge of the mother tongue - leaving the regular routine of tho classes and the direction of Modern Studies throughout the school in the hands of qualified British teachers. In registering this conclusion we rely not on British evidence alone, but also on the opinions expressed by several of our foreign witnesses. In France - as well as in Germany, if German methods may be quoted without offence - the policy indicated has been formally adopted. If Spanish, Italian, and Russian studies are, as we hope, to be introduced as alternative or supplementary in the higher forms of certain schools, it may be necessary for a time to rely upon foreign assistance. But such reliance should be regarded as a temporary expedient to meet a temporary deficiency of qualified Britons, a deficiency which should gradually disappear when Modern Studies have been set on a proper footing.

152. Thus far we have been speaking of the schools. In the governing bodies of Universities we found no such settled conviction as to what is desirable. We must therefore emphasise the firm conclusions at which we have arrived. In our opinion Modern Studies in our Universities have suffered greatly in the past through the absence of British control and direction. The excessive philological and antiquarian bias which has so long prevailed in Modern Studies at our Universities can be directly traced to foreign influence. The Classical tradition is not the cause, except in so far as there has been unintelligent imitation of its methods; if Classical scholars have tended to regard language too much as an end in itself, it has been the exact comprehension, the artistic use, and the close criticism of language, which some of them have pressed perhaps with too exclusive favour. The philological bias to which we take exception has been diminished of late years, but it is still apparent; nor can Modern Studies ever be thoroughly at home in Britain until they are directed in a comprehensive spirit in conformity with the national needs, the national traditions of education, and the national character. This can only be done by British scholars.

153. Further, the stipends and professional status of those engaged in Modern Studies having been hitherto unattractive in this country, there has been no sufficient motive to persuade a foreign scholar, whose foot was already on the ladder, to quit his country for an alien and uncongenial atmosphere. With notable exceptions the results have been as might be expected; too often we have not got the best. Moreover it may be doubted whether even the best could thrive under the conditions that are inevitable. In the counsels of the Universities it can rarely happen that a foreigner carries the weight due to his position, to the importance of the studies which he represents, or even to his own personal distinction. In certain parts of the teaching, especially where translation into English or from English is concerned, the foreigner has manifest disabilities, and scholarship has undoubtedly suffered thereby. Again, as time goes on, the foreigner loses his initial advantages. It is unlikely that he will preserve his pronunciation and intonation unimpaired among British surroundings. As the times alter, he will lose that intimate knowledge of the spirit and circumstances of his native country which he once possessed. The more he becomes a Briton, the better in one way; the worse in others. It may be that after the lapse of years he has all the drawbacks of an alien and none of the esoteric knowledge of a native.

154. We are not, of course, suggesting that foreigners should have no place in the Modern Studies of our Universities. Until Spanish, Italian, and Russian studies have been fairly established in this island, we may have to rely to some extent on help from abroad, and we should be grateful to those who are willing to come to our aid. But, as in the schools, this policy should be regarded as a temporary makeshift; and we should not be satisfied until the head of every department of Modern Studies in every University is a thoroughly qualified native of this realm. If this be established in principle and in fact, there may still be room for the exceptional appointment of a foreigner of distinction as professor or lecturer in some special branch of the Modern Study. Again, even if all the important posts in all the Universities and in the Modern Studies belonging to all the chief European countries were held by Britons, there should still be attached to each language one or more indigenous assistants to give that help in the study of pure language which no Briton can properly supply. But these foreign Assistants should be young men or women engaged for a term of two or at most three years and changed at the end of the fixed period. If the employment of foreigners on this basis becomes a recognised and universal practice in our Universities, we may be able to establish reciprocity with the chief friendly countries of Europe, and thus have constantly abroad a number of young men and women earning a livelihood, and at the same time pursuing their own studies, and acquiring by prolonged residence that intimate familiarity with the country which cannot be gained in any other way, and which is essential if they are to be properly equipped to fill teaching posts of various grades at home.

155. If we look at the question from the other side, we shall see that Modern Studies can never offer to young Britons an attractive career until there are many and important positions which they can hope to win by merit, and for which BrItish birth is regarded as a qualification and not as a defect. There should be many more such positions, and a greater variety of them; but we must repeat that they should not be hastily filled by foreigners, or by relatively incompetent natives of this country (§150). Time should be allowed for the training of candidates of high ability and indubitable claims. Finally, if the ambition of young students is to be stimulated in the fullest degree for the publIc benefit, other openings are needed for scholars, as for instance in the service of the Foreign Office, in the Diplomatic and in the Consular Service, and in commerce and the commercial side of industry. In this section, however, we are princi-

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pally concerned with the prospects in the teaching profession. But in this as in all other professions the improvement of salary, status, consideration, and prospects, is the chief means by which a sufficient proportion of the highest talent can be attracted to Modern Studies.


156. In all the Universities and University Colleges which we visited we were told that those who entered for Modern Studies were as a rule insufficiently prepared before matriculation, and did not on the whole compare favourably in ability with their fellows in the other University Departments. It was generally agreed that the women were better than the men, but the standard is set or at least influenced by the men. It is obvious that improved preparation can only be secured by improvement in the methods of the Secondary Schools and especially in the higher forms of the Secondary Schools. On this point we have said enough above (§80). But the inferior calibre of the students results primarily from the low esteem of Modern Studies. In Scotland we were told more than once that young Scotsmen did not consider Modern Studies to be "a man's job". This attitude of mind cannot be entirely due to a false notion that Modern Studies are too easy to satisfy the most vigorous intellects; the Honours Schools in English and in History, where the preliminary difficulties are even fewer, have been held in comparatively high respect. We think that the phrase sums up an opinion that Modern Studies do not offer a promising career for a young man of parts and ambition. But, even before there can be much question of a life's career, those who are inclined to Modern Studies find obstacles across their path. Such students have in the past had open to them few Entrance Scholarships to the Universities, especially to the Universities of Oxford and Cambridge. For the Entrance Bursaries to the Scottish Universities Modern Languages have until recently had only half the competitive value of Latin and Greek; even now those who have elected to specialise in French and German do not enjoy the same measure of freedom as those who choose Latin and Greek. Similarly, there are few distinctions and prizes to be won by Modern Studies during or at the end of the academic course. It is known that the fellowships of Cambridge and still more of Oxford are rarely given for Modern Studies. In the highest public competition of the kingdom, that for Class I of the Home Civil Service and the Indian Civil Service, Modern Studies have hitherto had an entirely subordinate position. It must be remembered that rewards are not only a direct incentive to useful study; they have an indirect value as a mark of public esteem. One way and another it is certain that Modern Studies do not at the Universities get anything like their fair proportion of the best brains.


157. There are some among us who regard the British system of Scholarships as radically vicious; and we are all aware that it is open to grave objections. But, agreeing with the Interim Report on Scholarships of the Consultative Committee of the Board of Education for England and Wales (1916, Cd. 8291, paragraph 122). we recognise that the Scholarship system is too deeply rooted in our habits and traditions to be dislodged; at any rate, it can only be rendered unnecessary by a full provision of educational opportunity together with far-reaching economic, social, and moral changes. And so long as Scholarships and Bursaries continue to be awarded, we consider that Modern Studies should have their fair share of them, a share ultimately equivalent to that of Classical studies. In saying this, we do not suggest that the College Scholarships of Oxford and Cambridge should be taken from Classics and given to Modern Studies. Such action would probably destroy the study of the Classics, or at any rate the admirable discipline they afford for certain minds. It may be that something could be spared from the Classics; it is not easy to believe that the 205 Classical Scholars and Exhibitioners elected in 1911-12 by the Colleges of Oxford and Cambridge were all worth their salt; but, as things were before the war, far more candidates deserved Scholarships for Classics than for Modern Studies. With extended and improved Secondary Education there should in time be an adequate supply of well-qualified candidates in both. Actually, in 1911-12, the Colleges of Oxford and Cambridge awarded to Modern Languages 8 Scholarships out of 440. This may be justified by the low state of Modern Studies; but the result is to create a vicious circle from which escape is difficult.

158. The Consultative Committee conceived that it was necessary for the encouragement of Scientific Studies that Entrance Scholarships to the Universities should be established by the Government. It seems to us necessary that similar Scholarships should be given for the encouragement of Modern Studies; and, the need for the rapid development of Modern Studies being great, we consider that the employment of public funds for this purpose would be directly and speedily remunerative to the nation. We do not consider that Local Authorities or private benefactors or the Colleges of Oxford and Cambridge are likely to rise to the occasion with the promptitude that is imperative. A proportion of such Scholarships should be sufficient in value to enable the holders to proceed to Oxford or Cambridge. The apportionments of their scholarships among the several universities should be in the hands of the Advisory Committee mentioned in paragraph 150 above. For the first year or two, the situation would be adequately met by a small provision, to be progressively increased until the study of the chief European countries appears to be properly subsidised; that is, when about two hundred Scholarships a year are given for Modern Studies. But the Examination for such Scholarships should not be in language alone. The syllabus might include seven subjects: English, French, German, Italian, Spanish, Russian, and possibly Latin: three of these to be taken, two on a higher standard, a third on more restricted lines; English, either on the higher or on the lower standard, always being one. The examination on the lower standard should

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test chiefly the power to use the language, both for translation purposes and as an instrument of independent expression, but it should also include a general paper of questions designed to give advantage to candidates who had carried their studies farther. The examination on the higher standard should demand some familiarity with the broad outlines of the history and a first-hand acquaintance with a considerable body of the literature. In each subject taken on the higher standard an oral examination would be essential and this examination should not only be directed to testing fluency and power of audition, but should also be used to measure the wider profit that the candidate had gained from his study. For practical convenience the oral examination might be confined to those candidates whose work on the written papers seemed to merit further consideration. (See also §209.)

159. A question addressed by us to the Historical Association appears to have excited some suspicion of our intentions, a suspicion which we were not able to remove completely. It was, we believe, feared that we should propose that the Entrance Scholarships hitherto awarded for History by the Colleges of Oxford and Cambridge (in 1911-12 they numbered 56) should be taken away from History and offered for a combination of History and Modern Languages. We have no such design. But we do feel strongly that in the more advanced study of History a working knowledge of one or two Modern Languages is most valuable, if not necessary. In most of the examinations for History Scholarships there is already a test which enables candidates to show such knowledge of languages ancient or modern or both. We doubt whether this test often counts for much. We should be glad if it received more prominence, and if candIdates who made It clear that they could use one or more languages accurately and readily for reading purposes received adequate credit for an accomplishment so directly useful in historical study.

160. We fancy also that the historians were afraid that historical teaching might suffer if any important part of it fell into the hands of language teachers not trained in history. But, on the one hand, we hope that in the near future a larger proportion of language teachers in schools will have had as a part of their University course sufficient training in historical thought. And, on the other hand, for the improvement of Modern Studies in the higher forms of Secondary Schools, we rely on the assistance of the History specialists who at least can help by showing how the history of France or Germany (for instance) links on to the history of the rest of Europe. We have, further, been warned that history is one and indivisible, and that, in our scheme of Higher Modern Studies, we are in danger of splitting it up into as many fragments as we include countries. This argument, however, if carried far enough to undermine our position, would discredit the teaching of English History except as a subsection of European History, and, if carried to its extreme, would forbid the study of European History without a complete survey of the history, e.g., of China and Mexico. We think the historians should regard us as friends rather than enemies. We desire to extend the illuminating influence of history to a whole department of studies for which history can do much and which, in turn, can, as we believe, render substantial assistance to history.

161. In support of our view we may quote the words of Dr. C. H. Firth, Regius Professor of Modern History at Oxford. "The chief obstacle to the study of Modern History is undoubtedly the prevalent ignorance of Modern Languages amongst historical students. It affects all grades of them in a varying degree. During the last ten years I have usually had four or five young B.A.'s of this and other Universities working with me, either writing dissertations for degrees or doing pieces of historical research. The difficulty in choosing subjects, and in making investigations on the periods at which they were working, always has been that they could read no foreign languages but French (except in two or three cases). Therefore it was either necessary to keep them off foreign history and the history of English foreign relations altogether, or to limit them to the study of Anglo-French relations. And, when they were working at subjects taken from English domestic history, it was useless for me to recommend them to refer to relevant German books dealing with the part of English history they were studying. I have examined for about ten Fellowships given by various Colleges for Modern HIstory. Usually there were about ten candidates, aged from 22 to 26, who were picked men and had obtained generally a First Class in the Modern History School. The Fellowship examination usually included a translation paper containing passages of French, German and Italian. I cannot remember a single case in which all three languages were well translated by a single candidate; in most cases the German was badly done or omitted, in a few cases the Italian was well translated, in some cases even the French was badly translated by candidates who possessed a very large amount of historical knowledge." So, too, Mr. Oman, Chichele Professor of History, says: "Study of Modern HIstory by candidates for the Oxford Modern History School is much hindered by the fact that two-thirds of them cannot read French or German fluently." These opinions fortify our conclusion (§97 above) that whatever be the main study of the several pupils in the higher forms of Secondary Schools, all alike should be encouraged to acquire a good reading knowledge of one or two modern languages, and should be directly aided to do so.

162. The Historical Association concur with us in the opinion "that some foreign languages ought to be studied by all boys and girls making History their main subject of study"; they agree with us that "History should be studied by all boys and girls making Modern Languages their main object of study"; they appear to hold with us that compulsory Latin is unnecessary for Arts courses; they share our belief that "no Modern Language should be taught in a University Honours Course without combining with it the teaching of the history of the country whose language is studied." In view of this substantial coincidence of opinions, and after our explanation given above, we hope that misunderstandings may be removed, and

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that the necessary alliance of History and Modern Studies may be forwarded by our common efforts. The essence of our policy is the pursuit of Modern Studies in a historical spirit; we count on the support of the historians; we have therefore taken special pains to dispel any misgivings that may have arisen in their minds.

163. We may further remark that we welcome the resolution of the Headmasters' Association that "it is essential that pressure should not be put on the Entrance Scholar to take his degree in the subject or subjects in which he has gained his Scholarship". We think that some who have won their Entrance Scholarships in Modern Studies may well study History at the University; we think that others who have won Scholarships in History may with advantage devote themselves to some part of the historical side of such a comprehensive Modern Course as the University of Cambridge has adopted; and we should be very glad if a proportion of Classical Scholars were to devote themselves at the University to Modern Studies.


164. We found by enquiry at the Universities that a certain proportion of students of modern subjects spent one or more of their long vacations abroad. We consider this practice to be of the highest importance. But we did not find any system by which the poorer students could be enabled to meet the cost. It is most desirable that in every University there should be a substantial sum annually available for this purpose. The subvention should be on a modest scale to meet necessary expenses. A sum of 25 and railway fares should suffice for three months. It should be at the disposal of all who satisfy the University authorities that they need it, provided always that their studies show suitable progress and promise. If University arrangements allow, and at some centres they do so already, a period of attendance at a foreign University might be permitted to count as part of residence for a degree, and might be similarly subsidised. Those who are assisted to reside abroad should be bound to render a satisfactory account of the use they make of the time. Those who can afford to meet some part of the expense might be allowed an equitable proportion. Two long vacations with a term make up the chief part of a year, and should be a most valuable addition to academic work. We do not know where we are to look for such subventions unless to the Government; they might be apportioned by the Advisory Committee mentioned in paragraph 150 above. For these subventions and for Entrance Scholarships we adhere to the principles laid down by the Consultative Committee of the Board of Education in paragraphs 105 and 106 of their Interim Report on Scholarships (§157).

165. Still more important would be the establishment of a relatively small number of Studentships to enable the best scholars to study abroad, after graduation, either at a foreign University or in some other approved manner. These Studentships should be awarded for proved merit on the recommendation of the University authorities, and should be apportioned among the Universities by the Advisory Committee for Modern Studies. Their value should be not less than 150; and they should be awarded in the first instance for one year. At the end of the first year some of the holders might be encouraged to take posts, as assistants in foreign schools. But those who were devoting themselves to higher academic studies might be continued in their Studentship for a second year, or occasionally even for a third, after a consideration of the report presented by them of the work they had accomplished, and of that which they desired to pursue. The Studentships should be subject to no test of means; those who took advantage of them would be making a sufficient sacrifice by deferring their entry on profitable employment for so considerable a period of time. If we are to secure an adequate supply of professors and lecturers for the Universities and of teachers for the highest work in the schools, some such subsidies for post-graduate study abroad appear to us absolutely necessary. There is no reason why a few of the Studentships should not be awarded to students who had distinguished themselves in Classics and who had a sufficient preliminary knowledge of the modern language that they desired to study. Fifty might ultimately be awarded annually; continuation for more than one year would be rare. It is unlikely that our suggestions in this and the preceding paragraph can be applied to Germany at any rate until some years after the war.


166. If Modern Studies are to be pursued on a comprehensive basis, the system of their treatment at the Universities requires to be reconstructed and amplified. The regulations of the new "Modern and Medieval Languages Tripos" show that this has been realised in the University of Cambridge, and an important advance towards a wider conception of Modern Studies has thereby been made. The scheme is as yet untried. We do not assert that it is the best that could be devised. We believe that variants might well be thought out in other Universities with special reference to their individual aims or conditions. But we desire to draw attention to the features which mark it in our view as a memorable step forward in the history of Modern Studies in this country.

167. The Tripos is divided into two parts, the first designed to test the candidates' knowledge and command of the language before they pass on to the wider fields of literature, history, philosophical thought, or philological study. By this means it will be possible, subject to certain reservations, to bar the way to those who have not that accurate and scholarly use of the language or languages studied to which we attach high value. It may be thought and it has been urged, that the cultivation of a scholarly use of the language has not sufficient recognition in Part II, and that few candidates enter the University so well prepared as to enable them to reach a high standard in two languages in Part I even at the end of two years. Experience will show

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whether this latter feature requires readjustment. In Part II candidates may devote themselves to the study of one country or of two at their desire. The passing of the oral test in any language is not indispensable for Honours of the highest class; but only those who pass it will be noted in the Class LIst as having taken the language in question. The literature, thought, and history of each country are treated as an interdependent whole, but latitude of choice is given as to the periods which candidates may select as their own. Full opportunity is allowed for the study of the most recent history, including economic and social conditions. Philology is viewed comprehensively and those who are interested in its study have wide scope for their preference: but no candidate is pressed in this direction against his will. It has been objected that with so great a latitude individual candidates may select an incoherent or narrow course. Provision has been made to obviate this danger and with wise advisers the fear need not be realised. We look upon the scheme as a promising and courageous effort to initiate a new era in modern language study.

168. There is no need for us to review the schemes of Honours Courses in Modern Studies at other Universities. All or nearly all of them require of all their students some philology and some study of the ancient forms of the languages. This we consider unnecessary. These branches should be optional. None of the courses give any adequate place to the history of the life, the thought, the institutions, of the foreign countries. Literature, especially imaginative literature, generally has due weight; but the attention paid to literature other than belles lettres is probably insufficient, and it seems likely that the most modern literature is generally neglected. Thus, in several Universities we found that the study of German literature virtually ended with the death of Goethe; a practice which excludes all chance of learning the very different tendencies of later German developments. As a rule, the oral tests are satisfactory in intention, but it may be doubted whether the standard exacted is often as high as it should be for Honours. Similarly, the general level of scholarship is not likely to be so good as is desirable until the level reached in the schools is much higher. We found little evidence of the systematic teaching or study of phonetics. Though students ought to have received before entry a satisfactory grounding in so important a subject, yet this should not be left to chance. It is specially valuable for teachers; and, while the University course is not primarily intended for the training of teachers, it should incidentally provide most of what teachers require. The truth would appear to be that the staff of most of the Universities is insufficient for a comprehensive scheme of varied and interdependent studies such as would give to all a solid and coherent foundation, and to different types of mind a sufficient liberty of choice.

169. Two years are inadequate for a complete Honours Course even in one language; but we found that in most of the Universities two languages were being studied, and that the first of the three years was taken up with the Intermediate examination, which comprises two or three subjects more or less alien to the general purpose which the Honours student has in view. Of these subjects Latin is usually one. Thus only two years are left for the work of the Honours course proper. We believe that this Intermediate course is regarded as necessary to supply the defects of Secondary Education; and as long as conditions remain as they are it may serve a useful purpose for the majority; but, if the Second School Examination be established on a satisfactory basis, the corresponding certificate should exempt from the Intermediate, at any rate if distinction be gained. In the Scottish Universities, where 80 per cent of entrants have won the Leaving Certificate, no Intermediate examination is imposed, except at St. Andrews. Three years are the minimum for a worthy Honours Course, and a further year's study abroad should follow, if the best results are to be obtained.

170. In fact, as things are, it seems undesirable to require two languages, especially two unrelated languages such as German and French, from all candidates for Honours. The comprehensive and widely historical study of one country can be made a full task for even three years; nevertheless, if three years are available a second language may be taken by some with advantage, but it should be regarded as subsidiary. The combination of Honours in English with Honours in the Modern Studies relating to one foreign country provides a most desirable course both from the point of view of education and as a preparation for school teaching. But Honours in English, as in other departments of Modern Studies, should not be granted without training in the general, especially in the social, history of the nation to which the English language and literature belong.

171. We have already expressed our opinion (§93) that for those who seek Honours in Modern Studies, neither Latin nor Greek should be compulsory, whether at the matriculation stage, or in any preliminary or so-called Intermediate course. Not only is an unnecessary burden imposed by such compulsion, but energies are dissipated which should be concentrated. On the other hand, besides such evidence of general education as the University authorities may think it wise to impose, the entrance examination to any University should require a much higher standard in English than is generally looked for; and before admission to an Honours Course in Modern Studies the student should be required to show good training in the particular language or languages which he proposes to study. It may not be possible to insist on this last requirement, if the language selected be one not generally learnt at school such as Italian, Spanish, or Russian; but in such a case a good discipline in at least one language other than English should be regarded as essential.


172. We are not at all inclined to underrate the value of the Pass Course as established In the Scottish and in many of the modern English Universities. Especially for teachers of

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general subjects, a first-rate Pass Degree may often be better than Third or even Second Class Honours. The greater width of the course makes up for deficiencies in earlier education, and supplies a good basis of knowledge which may be very useful in school. But, in so far as Modern Studies form a part of any pass course, it is desirable that energies should be concentrated on one language, rather than dissipated on two or more. English, History, a Modern Language, with one or more options in addition, make a very good pass course. But good and systematic teaching is especially required for the Modern Language which may be taken by a pass student. For this among other purposes additions to the teaching staff are urgently needed. If too much of their time is given to the students who are working for a pass, the Honours staff tends to be overworked.


173. The need for the development of Modern Studies in the Universities is great. The multifarious demands of the nation require that this development should proceed on many parallel paths, and it is necessary that Modern Studies, besides providing for practical wants and for the extension and dissemination of knowledge, should give as good an education as is given by the Classics. For all these purposes we must not only increase and improve the staffing; we must mobilise all the resources of the Universities. At present, the various Departments are often, we believe, too much isolated. While the Modern Languages staff should assist the students of Science and History to acquire the knowledge of modern languages necessary for the effective pursuit of their own studies, the historians should assist the School of Modern Studies. The philosophers and the economists could also give most valuable help. In any University there may be one or more, perhaps among Classical scholars, who have acquired considerable knowledge of some foreign literature, or of some foreign author such as Dante; their services should be utilised so far as their leisure permits.

174. But at Oxford and Cambridge there is need of other cooperation also - cooperation between the Colleges and the University. The most distinctive and perhaps the most valuable feature in our two oldest Universities is the personal and informal assistance given to young students by the tutors and lecturers of the Oxford and Cambridge Colleges. As new studies, such as History, have developed, the Colleges have taken their full part in aiding and developing them. Even in subjects such as Natural Science, which must be organised on a University basis, the Colleges have found ways to retain their valuable influence. At Cambridge Modern Studies are beginning to win recognition: their position there to-day is much what the position of History was thirty years ago; there are already four College Lecturers who have them in special charge. At Oxford, on the other hand, the Colleges have hardly moved at all; there Modern Studies are almost entirely in the hands of a University Institution, the Taylorian. Practically all the teaching is done in its buildings. The tutorial work that for other studies is done in the Colleges is contracted for by the Taylorian; and there appears to be little sympathy between the Colleges and the Taylorian, a state of matters which does not augur well for the future collaboration of the Colleges with the University in the matter of Modern Studies. If the best results are to be obtained for Modern Studies in Oxford, it seems to us imperative that a satisfactory understanding should he established between the Taylorian and the Colleges.

175. The Taylorian is governed by a body of eleven curators appointed under Statute, partly ex officio, partly elected by Convocation, partly coopted. Only one member of the present body is a teacher of Modern Languages. Our attention was drawn by the Modern Languages Staff to the fact that they have no representation on the Governing Body of the Institution which they serve - the word 'serve' does not seem too strong. Though two of these teachers have the status of Professor and are only paid in part by the Curators, yet they appear to be in fact subordinate to the Institution, which is authorised to charge fees for admission to their lectures. The Taylorian Statute lays it down as the duty of every lecturer "to conform to such regulations as the Curators may make respecting the hours and mode of teaching, the arrangement of classes, the books to be used, and other matters of a like nature." We gladly recognise the great vigour with which the Institution has been administered of late years and the progress that has in consequence been made; in particular, the Taylorian library is invaluable. But we are aware of no important School of a University which is kept in this kind of tutelage.

176. In London, where Modern Studies are energetically fostered there are different obstacles to cooperation. Three of the six Colleges are so situated that their students cannot without greater or less difficulty avail themselves of the facilities offered elsewhere. The three which are in closer proximity - University College, King's College, and Bedford College - unite in intercollegiate schemes of instruction; but they are too far apart to allow of the most economical use of joint resources. There is, therefore, danger of duplication, of overlapping, and of wasteful competition. For the effective organisation of Modern Studies the close cooperation of the London School of Economics is desirable, but far from easy in practice But the difficulties enumerated above do not concern Modern Studies alone; they are fundamental in the present constitution of the University of London.

177. We may summarise the chief needs of the Universities as follows: An improved conception and scheme of studies; a larger and more adequately paid staff representing more aspects and more countries than have hitherto been represented in most centres; a better prepared and more able class of students; and the encouragement of post-graduate study to be carried on abroad. The recommendations, which we have made in the preceding thirty-one paragraphs, seem to us urgent if the work of the Universities in Modern Studies is to be set on a sound and comprehensive foundation.

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178. But, however well the instruction in our schools and Universities be developed; it can cover only part of the ground. A school can give a training in languages, some familiarity with the use of language generally, and some insight into its nature; by such means it can educate the mind, the character, and the taste. To all who remain in attendance up to sixteen and beyond, it can give the chance of laying firm foundations in the knowledge and use of one foreign tongue; to a considerable minority it can give a firm footing in a second; a carefully chosen few it can introduce to one or two others. By one language or by more, it can make known to many the gifts that language brings; it can foster an appreciation of language and of all the satisfactions which are denied to those who know no tongue but their own. The Universities on their part can offer to a select few the chance of building further on foundations laid at school. It cannot be too clearly understood that school teaching must be, in the nature of things, incomplete; its fruits can only be attained after school has been left behind, and, besides, however great the liberty of choice that may be allowed, the range of instruction offered in schools can hardly extend beyond the two classical languages and those of the five principal countries of Europe. The Universities, again, can only serve a small minority. For commerce and for practical ends, for knowledge, for information, we require other and different opportunities for adolescents and adults who may wish to study languages not as part of their education but as instruments to various definite ends. Opportunities are needed for the study of other languages than those which individuals may have actually taken up at school, and also for the study of languages which no school curriculum professes to include. Those who are prepared to devote a considerable period to the acquisition of some particular language may be able to concentrate the whole of their attention upon it, and for these whole-time instruction should be arranged. But there must also be opportunities for the many, engaged in earning their livelihood, who have perforce to be content with attendance in their leisure or with part-time instruction during working hours. It is our belief that if the purpose of language teaching were better understood in schools, the impulse to acquire new languages in the leisure time of later life would be far more widely felt. Even now, however, there are many who, having learned no language at school or, at all events, having learned none with success, nevertheless feel this impulse later on; and a proportion of these make good use of any facilities that exist.

179. That the impulse is already at work is proved by the attendance at classes provided by Local Authorities, by Polytechnics, by Commercial Institutes and Colleges. The progress which classes formed for the study of Italian, Spanish and Russian have made since the war is specially noteworthy, all the more because the fighting services have taken the men. Our view is further borne out by the existence of many flourishing institutions for the teaching of languages only, and by the demand for languages in those coaching establishments which offer miscellaneous instruction, whether for competitive examinations or for what is known as business training. We have endeavoured to ascertain why the institutions conducted for private profit attract so many students who might, in London, at any rate, have obtained similar instruction at a lower cost through courses maintained by the Local Authorities. There seem to be several reasons. The private establishments allow the students to take what subjects they please and to enter at any time; they are open all day and also in the evening, and students can attend for as many hours as they please or as few; they take pains to obtain appointments for their clients as soon as they have finished the course selected; they lay themselves out satisfy the conditions required by the public competitive examinations and the qualifying examinations of the Society of Arts and the London Chamber of Commerce; and they are better advertised. It is important that instruction provided at the public cost should be made widely known, and that heads of institutions maintained by municipalities for commercial instruction should endeavour to get into touch with commercial firms and to place their well-qualified students in situations where their knowledge may be used to the greatest advantage. In other directions it is perhaps undesirable that they should attempt to compete with those who work for private profit.

180. For the kind of instruction under consideration in this section we may regard languages as if they were an end in themselves. Their general utility for national purposes may be regarded as proven; nor need we here consider them as part of education, or explore the motives which actuate the students. Adults and adolescents, who seek instruction in modern languages after completing their full-time education, may be presumed to have a clear idea of the purposes for which they are studying, and of the way in which their knowledge can be used. Some will want chiefly to read and write the languages; others will especially desire to speak them: for both classes suitable provision should be made. A part will wish for instruction in the special vocabulary and phraseology common to all commerce. After the general foundations of the language have been laid, this instruction can be provided with advantage, and made more concrete by illustration through the actual documents employed in trade, shipping, and finance. A few text-books exist in which this class of matter is arranged so as to cover almost all the common ground of commercial transactions, and where they do not exist they will be produced as soon as an effective demand is felt. We have seen a proposal that salesmen and saleswomen in great departmental firms should be trained for the duty of serving foreign customers who seek any of the miscellany of goods supplied, for instance. in the clothing or fancy branches of those establishments. It is suggested that such classes should be conducted on the premises of the firms concerned, where all the necessary material would be present; illustrated trade catalogues might also be used. If compulsory Continuation classes become part of our educational system, such devices may prove valuable. As a general rule, instruction in the technical vocabulary of trade and commerce will be more effective for those who are already

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engaged in business and are acquainted to some degree with the material and the operations dealt with, than for pupils in schools to whom such details can hardly be made sufficiently real. It is certainly unsatisfactory to leave the part-time instruction of adults and adolescents in modern languages to private initiative. The attention of local authorities has been turned, and rightly turned, to the provision of classes for students who are occupied in business during the day.

181. Supplementary and further instruction of the kind here considered can now be given in evening classes or occasionally in mid-day classes during the luncheon interval; under a system of Compulsory Continuation it would form part of a scheme of systematic part-time education, with options among which languages might be included. But this would not meet the whole of the case which we have outlined. Opportunities of intensive study of some modern language should also be afforded. In every large town there should be an institution where a student who wished to devote six months or a year to the thorough study of a single language would find instruction, assistance, advice, and a well-stocked library. Where a Commercial College already exists, teaching (as several do) French, German, Italian, Spanish, and Russian, it should be easy to add a department for the intensive study of each. Two hours a day would suffice for formal instruction; the rest could be done by the personal efforts of the students. For the lesser languages we have already recommended (§70) a central school in London suggesting that in other great towns it might be possible to arrange for the whole-time study of one or more of these, the choice to be determined by the commercial needs of each several city. Such courses of intensive study should lead up to certificates of proficiency granted after a thorough-going enquiry, and those certificates should be of great value to anyone who desired a post as traveller abroad or in the employment of some firm with a foreign establishment. It might be worth while to give a money prize to those who obtained such certificates, as part compensation for loss of profitable employment. Some of the recipients might elect to use the money to complete their studies abroad.

182. We cannot press too strongly on Local Authorities the necessity of providing liberal facilities not merely for the part-time but also for the whole-time study referred to in the last paragraph. Under present conditions, however, it is chiefly to evening classes that students must look for such opportunities. The widespread organisation of evening classes which exists is, for England and Wales, under the supervision or the Technological Branch of the Board of Education and for Scotland under that of its own Education Department. At the lower end of the scale are classes primarily intended for those under sixteen, and grouped for the systematic continuation of elementary education. We are informed that in these the teaching of modern languages has been attempted but attempted without success. The pupils have no previous knowledge of any foreign language; the time that they give is limited; and their deficiency in other subjects is such that they cannot devote adequate attention to language study. If attendance at Continuation Classes is made compulsory, the position will be changed.

183. We are told that in the Senior Classes which are normally intended for those above sixteen, few make progress in language work unless they have had previous language instruction. We do not question the observation, but we think that it would not be advisable to exclude such applicants without a trial. Pupils from Central or Higher Elementary Schools who have already learnt something of French are admitted to the Senior Courses in French although they may be below sixteen; and it is certainly desirable that all encouragement to continue their language studies should be given to those who show ability. But the Senior Courses suffer from grave disadvantages. They are commonly suspended during the summer months because the attendance of the students cannot be relied upon during the light evenings; and in London many who might desire to attend live far away from their place of business, and the instruction which they desire cannot be provided for all in the neighbourhood of their homes. Again, classes are not held unless a certain number of students are entered; and, if the attendance falls off, the class may be dropped. This uncertainty must be very discouraging. These drawbacks would be largely removed by Compulsory Continuation.

184. As matters stand, evening classes in modern languages are chiefly valuable for adults who know what they want and are determined to get it. For adolescents they may involve excessive strain; for adults they are often a pleasant and sociable time of recreation, and in these circumstances much good work is undoubtedly done. We hear of men and women who have fitted themselves to become commercial correspondents solely by private study assisted by these classes. We even hear of some who have mastered four or more languages in this way. Unfortunately the rewards are poor. Hitherto the commercial correspondent has too often received a poor salary and has been outside the main channel of promotion. Unless the head of the firm or some other in high place is master of one or more modern tongues, the importance of languages in business is likely to he undervalued. Perhaps when the cheap German is no longer available the inducements offered for such study may be greater. A few firms in London provide their own classes in modern languages; a proof that in such firms their value is more fully recognised. And the steady flow of candidates for the certificates m modern languages of the Society of Arts and of the London Chamber of Commerce shows that many have not only hopes, ambitions, and industry, but also some prospect of material benefit. Nor must we forget the small class of students who learn modern languages without hope of pecuniary profit but to satisfy their desire for wider knowledge. In the year 1915-16 fifteen classes in French were arranged by the Workers' Educational Association on the initiative of the students, and it is believed that a large proportion of those who attended these classed did so with the desire either of studying French literature, or of becoming better acquainted with the French people through holiday visits. While the provision of evening classes in languages for adults is part of the expenditure which a nation can incur with the certainty of adequate material return, we think

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that disinterested study also deserves encouragement, even though the students may have received no previous language training; and in such classes the manner and purpose of the instruction might well be largely determined in cooperation with the students themselves.

185. For evening classes good teachers are, of course, required, and good teachers of languages have hitherto been hard to get for this or any other purpose. At present, the supply is found partly among those who are engaged in teaching during the day, partly among foreigners who have other occupations. Unless the former can be largely relieved of day-duty, it is scarcely reasonable to expect that they will be able to give of their best to the evening students. The interest of these students might in some localities be best served by the introduction of the "shift system", under which day school teachers would attend for a limited number of morning and afternoon sessions at their own schools and give the remainder of their time to the evening schools. No teacher should be called upon to serve for more than two sessions in one day nor should the total number of hours spent in school instruction exceed that usually demanded of teachers in the elementary and secondary day schools. It is worth adding that for adults foreigners may often make suitable teachers; but where possible they should have some training, and the remuneration usually offered is not sufficient to induce them to undergo the necessary preparation, while the chance that a class may be suspended for insufficient attendance does not make the employment more attractive. In view of the importance of the work, it should be practicable to devise and require a course of training without making it unduly long. Further, we should welcome a disposition on the part of University authorities to take a greater interest in the evening work, particularly by assisting in the provision of opportunities for that disinterested study of foreign languages and foreign countries to which allusion has been made in the preceding paragraph. An improved and more extended system of extramural teaching, which commanded not only the sympathy but also the occasional personal cooperation of the leading University professors and teachers, would secure for the adult workers of this country that kind of instruction which they need and desire. Some Universities have already thrown valuable energies into this field, and others will no doubt follow their example.


186. Improved pay and prospects are needed for all teachers in Secondary Schools; the Science Committee will also strongly emphasise this point. But they are specially needed for teachers of modern languages, whose training is unusually long, laborious, and expensive. These burdens would be lightened if the measures suggested in paragraphs 158, 164 and 165 above were adopted. It is desirable that every teacher of modern languages in a Secondary School should have a University degree, should have spent not less than a year abroad under suitable conditions, and should have undergone definite training for his profession. In Scotland before the war these conditions were in a fair way to be realised, but it will be long before they can be enforced in England. They should, however, be regarded as a standard which should be gradually approached and should eventually become general. It would be natural but not imperative that the University degree should be in Modern Subjects; but, if it be not, there should be some other guarantee that the teacher has fully competent knowledge of the language or languages he is to teach. By training, we do not mean that residence should necessarily be in a Training College; a better plan may be that - after the requisite instruction in phonetics - the aspirant should spend a sufficient period in a school recognised for the purpose, where he would at first employ his time in observing the methods of skilled teachers and studying the scheme of work and the elements of his art, and would thus gradually come to understand the principles he was to follow and the difficulties he would have to meet. After a sufficient period of initiation, he might begin to teach under supervision, receiving frequent advice and practical hints; and, before his period of training was over, he might begin to run alone. He would thus in six months, or at most a year, obtain a sounder orientation than he might acquire in all his lifetime if he were left to evolve his own procedure. Most useful of all would it be if he learnt the value of economy of time and the best methods for its profitable use. Schools recognised for the training of teachers should be under frequent inspection to see that the training was systematically carried out and was not made an excuse for economising on ordinary staff. The teachers selected to carry out the work of training should receive extra allowances in consideration of their special responsibilities. During his period of probation the aspirant should receive a small salary, sufficient to meet necessary expenses; it might be expected that at the end of it he would recoup himself for any loss by the higher value of the post which he would at once obtain by virtue of systematic preparation for his profession. This salary should be substantially higher for those who possess the Certificate mentioned in the paragraph next following. The plan that we have outlined has already been accepted in principle by the Board of Education for England and Wales, but has not been extensively adopted.

187. It is most desirable that Government machinery should be set up or certifying to the proficiency of teachers in Modern Subjects. The normal Certificate should guarantee adequate training in and mastery of phonetics as well, of course, as a thorough knowledge of the written and the spoken language, with a satisfactory standard of pronunciation and enunciation. This Certificate should be open to all who could reach the necessary standard. There may be some who have not pursued a regular course of education but have, so to speak, accidentally acquired one or more modern languages. These might be very useful in the present dearth of language teachers. A University degree, training, school experience, other subjects, and so forth, would and should enhance the value of the Certificate; but the Certificate itself should testify indubitably to adequate proficiency in the language, after thorough oral and written

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tests. Moreover, however good the proficiency originally possessed by a teacher, it is necessary that he should have opportunities to return from time to time to the foreign country to renew his intimacy and revive his knowledge.

188. There should be also a Higher Certificate for teachers of Modern Subjects, to be acquired after, say, five years' experience in teaching. This should be an honour hard to win and therefore worth the winning. Real practical skill should be an essential requirement. But, apart from this, there should be evidence, oral and written, of further progress in the language and its scholarship and in other necessary knowledge. A test of the nature of the explication de texte might be included as a trial of the candidate's width of knowledge and method in higher teaching; and he might be required to submit two theses, one literary and the other historical. It would he most advantageous that teachers after starting work should have some object to work for with a view to improving themselves and their prospects. Incidentally, we may remark that the status and standard of the scholastic profession would be greatly raised if it were understood that school masters and schoolmistresses might be worthy candidates for Professorships at the Universities. In other countries there is free circulation between the schools and the Universities, but not in Great Britain. We consider that this lowers the esteem of learning among the teachers of the schools, and the suggestion here made does not apply to Modern Studies alone.

189. It is desirable that at least some proportion of teachers of languages in schools should be encouraged to specialise in one language rather than in two. What is lost in general utility should be gained in greater knowledge of the history, the literature, and the life of the people chosen for special study. The combination of French and German that has been hitherto favoured is hardly likely to be equally satisfactory for both; both indeed may suffer. Two Romance languages make a better pair. On the other hand, the school teacher of a modern language should have at least one other subject at his command, preferably two; English and History being the must valuable adjuncts. Teachers of Modern Subjects should take a proper share in the general work of the school, and thus fit themselves to become Headmasters. The complaint made to us that Modern Subjects are not a good avenue to the highest posts in schools may perhaps be partly explained by the fact that teachers of modern languages are apt to be too narrowly specialist.

190. During the war women have served, often with great success, as teachers of Modern Subjects in Boys' Schools. In the dearth of male teachers that is to be anticipated after the war they are likely to be still useful in this capacity. At all events, apart from the emergency, the experiment deserves a continued trial. Women may have a good influence in boys' schools, just as men may have in girls' schools. (For the position of foreigners in schools, see paragraph 151 above.)

191. For a qualitative and quantitative improvement in the supply and training of teachers for schools we must look first of all to the improvement ofModern Studies in the Universities. Of this we have spoken in paragraphs 166-171 above. The next greatest need is for a general improvement in the pay, prospects, and status of teachers in Secondary Schools. The next .is a certificate that will guarantee a command of all the essential knowledge. The last is a system of training. We append to our Report a note on the salaries and hours of work of teachers in the Secondary Schools of Austria, France, Germany and Scandinavia. It will be seen that, though the standard of living in these countries is inferior to that in England, the salaries there are generally higher than those in Great Britain, if the large Public Schools be excepted. The hours are also lighter, especially in France, where more scrupulous preparation of the individual lessons is expected of the teachers.



192. It will not be expected of us that we should enter into a minute disquisition on the method of teaching Modern Languages, or attempt to decide the many controversial points that are still debated under this head. We conceive that our main duty is to inform the public as to the importance of Modern Studies in our educational system, their present position, and the urgent need for their improvement; further, to advise the Government and all those who have power in our educational system as to the means which seem likely to meet that need. We do not imagine that we were selected to decide technical points still at issue in the profession. It appears, indeed, impossible even to set out in words some of the questions involved, without reference to definite examples and definite experience which can only be judged from a strictly professional standpoint. Still, from our enquiries and our studies certain broad results emerge, and we will endeavour to formulate our main conclusions.

193. There is no royal road, no rule of thumb, of art, or of science, which can be indicated as leading to success in the teaching or study of Modern Languages. The particular method adopted must be suited to the age, the previous knowledge, and the purposes of the students,if not also to the idiosyncrasies of the teacher. If the student wishes to speak the language, one kind of method may be the best; if his main object be to read it, another will be preferable; if he wishes to write it this art can be approached either through speaking or through reading, but better still through both. It is obvious that, if he has learnt another language before, many things will he clear to him which must be carefully explained sooner or later while the first language is being learnt; and it is equally obvious that any good and well-qualified teacher may use devices and experiments of his own which are not for universal application.

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194. On the whole, however, we have no doubt that the introduction into teaching of what is called the Direct Method has removed a great obstacle from the path of teachers of modern languages. Previously, the teaching of the Classics was the model in the mind of all. The Classical languages had come to be taught in the first place analytically, that is, with conscious reference in every operation to the rules and conceptions of grammar; in the second place in constant relation to the mother tongue. Latin prose was the translation into Latin of English sentences. Latin "construe" was the conversion into English of Latin phrases or texts. The use of Latin in direct relation to thought without the intervention of the mother tongue. came only in the later stages if at all. This had not always been so. Latin grammars had been written in Latin and the rules had been learnt by heart in that language. Schoolboys had been obliged to speak Latin in school so far as they were able. That was the Direct Method as applied to Latin, the use of Latin as a direct expression of ideas without reference to the mother tongue. Now some of our schools have gone back again to the Direct Method in the teaching of Latin and also of Greek, and appropriate text-books have been produced. The results are said to be good, but here it is not the method of teaching the Classical languages with which we are concerned.

195. Those who introduced the "Direct" or "Reformed" Method into the teaching of modern languages had perceived that the incessant intervention of English was a real obstacle; the frequent turning from the one language to the other was a strain on the mind, and it introduced false idioms into the foreign tongue. They observed that, if a foreign tongue is being acquired under the most favourable circumstances, the new acquisitions are kept as it were in a separate section of the mind, and that this section responds only to its own associations. The child that can speak both English and French will answer in English if addressed in English; if addressed in French, will answer in French; if asked to translate an English sentence into French, will either fail to reply, or, if it attempts to do so, will make ludicrous blunders. It is a matter of experience, and is of some significance, that the translation of a single word raises no such trouble. The reformers further observed that a language is remembered partly by memories of sound (aural memories), partly by memories of the vocal mechanism (memories of speech movements), to a certain extent by memories of impressions of vision (ocular memories), and perhaps to a small extent by memories of motions made in writing. They therefore urged that the teaching of modern languages should insist from the beginning upon their use as a means of directly expressing ideas without reference to the mother tongue, and on the cultivation of speech and of the habits that are formed by the constant hearing and repetition of phrases correctly formed and enunciated. And, finally, they held strongly that grammatical analysis should be deferred as being merely a cumbrous means of reaching results that can be far more speedily attained by habits of speech. Thus it is easy to learn to say: Je ne le lui ai pas donné; but to learn all the rules that govern the order of these words is a long and tedious business; to apply them one by one to the construction of such a phrase would delay the production of the phrase until the occasion for its use had passed away.

196. All these principles and observations are sound, but method consists in their application to the practical purposes of teaching. There are very few who would not agree that languages should so far as possible be taught with a view to the direct expression of ideas, not to the translation of locutions first formed in the mother tongue. On the other hand, it is probably impossible to carry language teaching far in schools without some reference to the mother tongue. Even if the native language of the pupils be studiously excluded from the lessons, the pupils cannot be prevented from translating in their minds the words and phrases which they learn. If only six periods a week can be given to it, it is illusory to hope that children can be got to "think in French". And on other grounds it may be positively undesirable to insist on the attempt too strongly. Much time is wasted by unskilful teachers in endeavouring to explain in the foreign language a word or phrase that becomes at once intelligible if the English equivalent be given; while the occasional collation and comparison of the two modes of expression is indispensable if one of the advantages of learning a foreign language is the cultivation of one's own. There is general agreement that free composition in the foreign language should be practised before translation into the foreign language, but few of the most unbending advocates of the Direct Method would exclude such translation at the higher stages. The search for the right foreign word or phrase and the necessity for adhering to a given plan make such translation an effective instrument of culture when wisely directed. Translation from the foreign language should be sparingly used; but it is probably necessary as an occasional test of knowledge and, if it is taken seriously and a high standard is required, it is a valuable exercise in English. But whatever method be used , grammatical accuracy must be required at every stage in proportion to the progress made; no scholarship is possible without it. And as there are some points of language which can only be firmly fixed by reference to rules, time may be saved by explaining those rules in English. Thus even a Frenchman has to learn the rules for the concord of the past participle when used with an auxiliary verb. We would add that any method which did not practise the pupil in the ready handling of dictionary and grammar would be in our opinion unfortunate: since it would fail to train him in the habits which will be necessary when he wants to learn a language for himself.

197. Probably every skilled teacher of foreign languages, however firm his belief in the Direct Method, departs from it frequently for good reasons. Some repudiate the Direct Method altogether and achieve good results in their own way; but even they would doubtless admit that they have learnt much from its fundamental principles. The best method is that which best suits the teacher, assuming that he is a good teacher and well-qualified. Inferior teachers are unfitted for the use of the best methods; and our witnesses were unanimous that the worst possible results

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are obtained by teachers of inadequate knowledge and poor proficiency who conscientiously adhere to what they suppose to be the Direct Method. But all would agree that, if the teacher have a good knowledge of the foreign language, it should be used in class as early and as much as possible. The Circular of the Board of Education for England and Wales on Modern Languages in Secondary Schools (Circular 797, §§29-47) may be referred to as a judicious analysis of various principles of method which can hardly be reconciled in statement but may be in skilful practice.

198. The Direct Method has certain inevitable dangers and it is well that these should be noted. When this method is followed, speech must have a very important function in teaching and learning; the passive assimilation of the language from the speech of the teacher, its active acquisition through speech by the pupils, are of its very essence. But oral practice must be supplemented by the study of books, and at some stage by the systematic study of the necessary accidence and syntax. If attention is concentrated too exclusively upon the spoken language, too much is apt to fall upon the teacher; the contribution of the pupil is apt to be too slight. Whether grammars written in the foreign tongue should be alone employed, whether vocabularies and dictionaries that give the English equivalents should be avoided, are matters for individual discretion, or at any rate for the discretion of each particular school. But the pupils must be encouraged t do as much for themselves as possible; they cannot learn a language in class alone, and if they could they would miss perhaps the most valuable discipline afforded by the study of language, the discipline of personal effort. Probably the most useful kind of personal effort and that which is most easily enforced is the learning by heart of many typical phrases. The provision of such a series of moulds into which his thoughts may be cast is of immense value for the beginner, whatever his age.

199. In several of the Colleges we visited we were told that the students did not come to the University so well grounded as in the past; that their knowledge was superficial and inaccurate. After all the effort that has been made during the last two decades this verdict is very disappointing, but it reflects an opinion which we also found elsewhere. The falling off was attributed by our informants to misuse of the "Direct Method"; and this method misapplied or applied by incompetent teachers would lead to the results indicated. The learning of a language is and must be a difficult task; it cannot be made easy; from the beginning and at every stage the pupils must be made aware that their success depends upon themselves, and a high standard of accomplishment must be set before them. Every device must be employed to secure their cooperation; the memory must be methodically trained and stored; reading, writing, and speaking must all be used to contribute to progress. In every school in which modern languages are taught, a good lending library of first-rate books in the languages taught should be built up, suitable in each several school to the standard which such studies may reach therein. If the study of modern languages is to earn its due estimation, the highest possible accuracy and scholarship must be systematically cultivated. This cannot be done without making the pupils work; it is better still that they should be brought to desire to work and to work hard.

200. Though much latitude is permissible in method, in any one school method should be consistent within just limits. To secure some reasonable measure of consistency must be the duty of the Head, or of the member of his staff to whom he may delegate the direction of Modern Studies in his school. That pupils passing from one class to another should pass from one method to another wholly inconsistent, must be disadvantageous and may be disastrous. Yet in any school there may be heterogeneous elements, all valuable, and a teacher can hardly be forced to do good work by a method in which he does not believe. Ingenuity may minimise these disadvantages, e.g. by concentrating the believers in Direct Method at the lower part of the school and the disbelievers in the higher part. (§107 above.)

Uniform Grammatical Terminology

201. It is greatly to be wished that the grammatical nomenclature used for all languages should be so far as possible identical. It is specially important that it should be so within school where more than one language is taught. A uniform terminology brings into relief the principles of structure common to all allied languages; needless variation of terms conceals the substantial unity. We are convinced, for instance, that the widely differing systems commonly used for Latin and French must lead to error and confusion of thought. Already good work has been done in this direction, but it has not yet received adequate recognition or support. In 1909 eight important Associations* representative of those interested in teaching English and foreign languages as well as of every section of those responsible for such instruction in Secondary Schools combined to set up a Joint Committee on Grammatical Terminology. That Committee produced a Report which we have had before us in a revised form which was agreed upon in 1911. Since then a Standing Committee appointed by the same bodies has watched and promoted the movement for reform. The Report provides uniform grammatical terminology for English, French, German, Latin, and Greek; it is claimed that the same terminology is also applicable to other languages of the Indo-European family such as Russian, Spanish, and Italian. The terminology recommended has been adopted in several grammars of English, French, and Latin, and also as the basis of teaching in many Secondary Schools, though

*The Classical Association, the Modern Language Association, the English Association, the Head Masters' Association, the Head Mistresses' Association, the Assistant Masters' Association, tho Assistant Mistresses' Association, and the Association of Preparatory Schools.

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in only a small fraction of the whole number. While not committing ourselves to all the details of this scheme, we attach the highest importance to uniform nomenclature for grammar, and are of opinion that it is more necessary that the terminology should be uniform than that it should be free of all defects. The scheme of the Committee is consistent and well thought out; we recommend it for careful consideration as it stands; but it would be possible for individual schools, while adopting the main outlines of the Report, to make modifications in detail. In any event, we trust that uniformity in the use of grammatical terms, at least within each several school, will become at no distant date the rule and not the exception. We would go further and say that, in view of the frequent passage of pupils from one school to another by the migration of their parents, it is desirable that the greatest possible measure of general unanimity should be secured. In view of the present and prospective increase in the number of languages studied in schools, reform is urgently needed; and, as a simple measure to further it, we recommend that in the tests for Certificates for teachers in modern languages suggested by us in paragraphs 187 and 188, uniform grammatical nomenclature should be required. But it also seems to us that the eight great Associations which combined to set up the Joint Committee could do much to forward a general consensus. The Board of Education for England and Wales in their Memorandum on the Teaching of Modern Languages (Circular 797) do not mention the subject.

Methods of teaching pupils to read foreign languages

202. We have said above that method must be varied according to the purposes of the student, and in paragraph 97 above we have advocated the teaching of languages in schools for the specific purpose of reading. There is what is called the 'active' knowledge of language, the knowledge of language for purposes of self-expression. There is also the 'passive' knowledge of language, the 'recognition' knowledge, the knowledge which is sufficient for comprehension. For the thorough study of any language, both the active and the passive knowledge must be cultivated; and at least the first foreign language learnt should be studied in this way. But one or more additional languages can be learnt with advantage for reading purposes only. In our opinion such passive knowledge is quite worth cultivating, though the student may never attain the stage of speaking or writing. The methods applicable to this kind of study have not, we believe, been worked out in detail for common use; experiments are needed, and any resulting experience should be made known. It will probably be best to encourage the pupil to do most of the work for himself, with occasional tests, as by requiring a summary of a passage that has been read, or a translation of a typical extract. But it is not desirable that he should attempt to learn to read any language while remaining quite ignorant of its correct pronunciation. Not only is it barbarous to miscall too grossly the vocables of a foreign tongue, but the aural memory and the memory of the motions of the organs of speech in forming words are valuable aids in fixing the knowledge of any language. It is a grave blunder to rely on the ocular memory alone. Indeed, it is impossible to do so; and, unless care is taken to form right associations, wrong ones will inevitably be called into existence. It is also evident that due appreciation of melody and rhythm, whether in verse or in prose, is unattainable without a knowledge of the sounds which compose the music.


203. Phonetics may be defined as the science of sounds as used in language - their enumeration, their differentiation, their analysis, and the establishment of the methods by which they are produced. If circumstances permit the thorough learning of a language by imitation, phonetics are not needed; even then, however, it is necessary that miscellaneous imitation of various indigenous modes of pronunciation, enunciation, and intonation, should be corrected by close observation of the best models and of the purest speech. But imitation can only, as a rule, give the best results during early years and in the country where the language is at home; in schools the imitative endeavour must be guided, fashioned, and regulated by methodical training of ear and of organs of speech. However good the pronunciation, enunciation and intonation of the teacher may be, he will be aided in obtaining the desired results by a knowledge of the classification, differentiation, and analysis of vowels and consonants in his native language and in that which he wishes to teach. His task will be lightened if he is able, not not only to present to his pupils an example of each of the several sounds separately and in continuous sequence, but to tell them exactly how each sound is produced. But what it is necessary for him to know, he must have learnt thoroughly and be able to present accurately. Phonetic knowledge is a combination of scientific observation with training of ear, organs of speech, and attention. To equip him for his task, the teacher needs not only a complete familiarity with all that science has established concerning the sounds to be used, but considerable practice in distinguishing them when heard and reproducing them in speech. Neither the science nor the practice by itself will suffice; the two must be intimately combined. We have therefore said above that teachers of Modern Languages should have a thorough training in phonetics; for without them the best results that can be obtained in schools will be missed (§§168, 187). But we have also said that inaccurate phonetics are worse then none (§79); for they lead the pupils to form incorrect and ugly habits which will be all the more difficult to overcome, because they have been pressed home with the conviction of false science.

204. The need of good phonetic training for teachers who have to work in school conditions, we consider to be completely established. The use to be made of the scientific symbols, terminology, and analysis, is a matter of the teacher's art; and in this each expert teacher will

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vary. We can only say that at the beginning of a new language the pupils should be trained in the recognition and production of the sounds; the ear and the organs of speech should be systematically drilled; and the knowledge and practice should be brought to such a point that as errors creep in at later stages their correction may be facilitated by reference to earlier lessons, fixed in the pupils' minds. Barbarous pronunciation of any of the chief European languages is to-day as certain a mark of defective education as false quantities in Latin and Greek were in an earlier age. Those who have learnt to pronounce in one language really well will generally avoid such solecisms. In passing, we would express our regret that no method of more or less approximate transcription of foreign languages into the symbols of our own alphabet has yet become generally current. Such a system would prevent gross errors in the common pronunciation, e.g., of Slavonic and Turkish place-names. The use of phonetic script by the pupils may be regarded as optional; but it is of great utility as a convenient means of readily reviving earlier studies, provided that in that earlier instruction the meaning of the symbols was sufficiently grasped and comprehended. Our evidence does not suggest that the use of the script at early stages leads later to inaccurate spelling, even in such a language as French wherein orthography has no uniform relation to phonetics. The thorough phonetic training of the pupils will be most useful when they come to learn languages for themselves; a knowledge of the script will then be extremely valuable.


205. There is a great abundance of modern text-books, which are much superior in general aim and construction to those in vogue some twenty or thirty years ago. We notice, however, a tendency to excessive elaboration, which leads to lifeless and unintelligent teaching if lazy or uninventive teachers follow without discrimination the course conveniently marked out by the text-book. Even an inferior pedagogue would do better to use his own wits and base his instruction on a well-selected series of texts than to keep slavishly to the scheme prepared by another. Elaborately annotated texts for use in schools are a futile waste of labour and expense. A certain supply of good cheap plain texts of high-class works is already on the market; but even for French it is not adequate; for German it is very imperfect; for Spanish, Italian, and Russian, the deficiency is even more conspicuous, though efforts have been made during the war to improve matters. A short workmanlike historical introduction will sometimes be useful; beyond this only a few historical notes are needed; the rest should, as a rule, be left to the teacher.

206. The plan of the course in each school should be the result of careful thought, and should be constructed by the head of the Modern Studies department in consultation with his colleagues. The work of each year should be mapped out so as to be progressive and without gaps. Internal tests should be frequent, to ascertain if the foundation is well laid. An occasional term or shorter period can well be given to recapitulation and revision. Time is inevitably scanty in Secondary Schools; its economy should be practised to the utmost. The texts chosen should not be trumpery; works worthy of study for their own sake should be used so far as possible; and as early as may be convenient first-rate literature should be given to the pupils. In this connexion we feel bound to plead for more serious attention being given in the Upper Forms to the writings of French classical authors. As it is, teachers are too prone to ignore their existence, on the pretext that their thought is too abstract, their language too involved, as if these very qualities did not add immensely to their value as instruments of intellectual discipline for those who are old enough to profit by their use. At all stages prose as well as verse should be learnt by heart. Some texts should be studied intensively; but others should be provided for the pupils to read by themselves, with occasional questioning to see that they have read and understood the books put into their hands. The history of literature should not be taught apart from the literature itself; it should be introduced wherever helpful to illustrate the works under study. Pupils should be encouraged as early as possible to read on their own account, and for all the languages which it teaches every school should be provided with a good and varied lending library. It is necessary that the pupils should learn as early as possible that languages are for use; and not only for use, but for enjoyment. Where pupils stay until eighteen. or nineteen, private study should be systematically fostered (§98 above). Correspondence with foreign children, already fairly well organised, should be further encouraged. As we have indicated above, visits to foreign countries should be arranged when possible, while interchange of pupils with foreign countries is an experiment which deserves to be continued under careful management.

207. Our conclusion is that the newer methods of teaching modern languages are sound in principle, though, if misapplied, they have dangers of their own not less great than the travesty of Classical methods which they superseded. They admit of great variety in their application by a skilled teacher, and their best exponents are the least inclined to condone inaccuracy or to exaggerate the importance of superficial fluency of speech.


208. Methods of examination in modern foreign languages need careful and skilful revision. They have been too much based on the Classical tradition. In spite of certain improvements they still rely too much on stereotyped devices, such as translation into English and questions on the history of literature. Free composition needs further development, and the expedients adopted to provide subject matter for such composition are often unsatisfactory. The Report of the Modern Language Association on External Examinations for Schools (1911), though

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good so far as it goes, does not go far enough. The attention of the new Examinations Council established by the Board of Education for England and Wales should be called to this matter, and the Civil Service Commissioners may also be able to do something to bring new methods into use and to adjust them to the various stages of education.

209. Oral examination should be used wherever possible; and in school examinations and in ScholarshIp Examinations it should always be possible. In the great public competitions held by the Civil Service Commissioners it can hardly be introduced when the numbers exceed four or five hundred. The extra fees to be paid to those who conduct the examinations are a minor consideration; the expenditure would not be great and would be educationally remunerative. A greater obstacle would be the additional burden on the candidates of travelling a second time to one of the many examination centres. But the greatest of all would be the difficulty of keeping the standard even, if many examiners were employed, and the great delay if all the candidates were to be examined by the same examiner. Still, oral examination has proved possible in the higher competitions and it should be introduced in all if the difficulties can be surmounted. If used for candidates of sixteen or upwards, it should be a test not only of speaking power but of the actual progress made by the candidate in the knowledge of the country whose language he has been learning and whose literature he has had before him. More light can often be obtained on such points by ten minutes of skilfully conducted conversation than by the whole of a written paper. Separate marks should be assigned for the use of the spoken tongue and for the knowledge, intelligence, and mastery of the subject shown in the course of the conversation.

210. Free composition should be varied in its methods and new methods should be invented. Even where translation into the language is required, free composition should also be used as an additional test. Essays should not be asked for at all before eighteen, while even at the University they should not be the only means employed to test the power of composition, construction and control of matter. Verse composition can be practised with probable advantage at an early stage, later only by those who have a gift for it; it might be optional in school-leaving and final University examinations. Commentaries on texts supplied in a printed paper afford a useful means to discover whether a candidate is familiar with the literature and its historical background, and whether he can say, in the foreign language, exactly what he desires to say. Such commentaries may take many forms, which may be adapted to the age of the candidates. In the final examinations of the University they might play an important part; they should not, however, range indiscriminately over the whole field of relevant comment, but should be directed to specific points by questions in the printed paper. One passage might lead to discussions bearing on the history of thought, another to historical notes, another to disquisitions of a critical nature on literary form or on language, another to observations on law, customs, social structure, or institutions. By such means the examinations in literature might be brought more closely into touch with the works of the authors than they always are at present. Questions on literature of the type usually set, however skilfully drawn, too often offer scope for second-hand criticism and for matter taken either from text-books or from the lectures of the Professors. The best manner of conducting examinations in literature and of preserving therein the intimate connexion of literature and history is still to be devised; much thought and experiment will be needed before satisfactory solutions of the problem can be found. We say solutions, because it is probable that those tests will be most searching which are most varied and approach the matter from the greatest number of sides. If the new scheme of the Civil Service Commissioners is adopted, whereby candidates for the highest class of posts are to be examined in the language, literature and history of the principal countries of Europe, a great field will be open for diversified experiments in the direction indicated. We would once more emphasise our conviction that in examinations on literature history should have an important place, and that in examinations on history literature should be regarded as one of the most important sources of historical enlightenment.

211. The view has been urged upon us that translation into a foreign language is an artificial exercise in which perfection is unattainable and on which too much trouble is spent without equivalent advantage. We addressed questions on this point to the Professors and Lecturers in the various Universities, and we found unanimous accord that translation into the foreign language was a most valuable test of scholarship and of the higher mastery of the language. Great stress was laid by our witnesses on the task imposed on candidates by such translation of expressing exactly a given set of ideas, whereas free composition allows the writer to avoid difficulties which he cannot master and to follow easy paths. Some of us still incline to believe that the last word has not yet been said on this topic, but we are not prepared to go against the weight of evidence, though we may suspect that the view expressed with so much unanimity is unconsciously influenced by long-established tradition. But, whatever the truth may be for the Universities, we are convinced that for school boys and school girls translation into the foreign language is made far too difficult. The passages set should be simple and direct and a high decree of accuracy should be expected of any candidate who aspires to distinction. The English chosen should be good English: this is not always the case. Students in the higher forms of schools and at the Universities should be constantly reminded that the best way to learn to compose in a foreign tongue is to study the great masters of prose and verse closely, widely and observantly. The results of such study should be apparent as well in free composition as in translation. In fact the higher the merit of the candidate, the easier it will be for him to show it in free composition. We note a great difference in the practice of various Universities as regards answers to questions on literature, etc. Some require the questions to be answered in the foreign language, some prefer that they should be answered in English, some leave the choice to the candidate. Our own view is that in an examination the exercises set to be dealt with in

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the foreign language should be specially devised to test skill in and mastery of the language and that the work should be appraised partly or mainly for these elements. Where knowledge only is to be tested, it seems better that questions should be answered in the mother tongue.

212. In gauging a certain kind of knowledge by examination, translation into English is the only test that can be used. It should not, however, be forgotten that it tends to break down that direct connexion between ideas and language which should be preserved so far as possible in learning a foreign tongue. In school, therefore, it should be practised only so far as necessary; the existence of examinations makes this necessity greater than it would otherwise be. It is the more desirable that the utmost benefit should be derived from the compensating advantages. Translation into English, though it may not be the best way of learning a foreign tongue, is a good test of knowledge, and it can be made an admirable exercise in the use of the mother tongue. It would, of course, be absurd to expect quite young pupils to be masters of terse idiomatic expression, and in their case nothing more than an intelligible reproduction of the original should be looked for. But, as the age of the candidates rises, those who have to appraise the work should attach an increasing value to the skilful and accurate use of our own language in all examinations in which translation into English must have a part. At our Universities, especially, artistic excellence in this accomplishment should be expected from all who aspire to high Honours. In this matter, as in some others, the influence of foreign Professors has not been favourable. It can rarely happen that a foreigner is a good judge of merit in English translation, or will require a due standard or attainment from the students committed to his care.

213. It must be admitted that examinations can be with difficulty prevented from exercising certain bad influences on the teaching and study of all subjects, and especially on the teaching of Modern Subjects. These bad influences are certain to be more powerful if the examiner's art is held in low estimation by the best scholars. Examinations are too often conducted by persons of inferior intelligence and attainment, or by others who, though able and learned, regard them as a kind of low drudgery done for gain. We need the best minds and the best scholars for examination work; only by the cooperation of the best can the bad influences of examinations be minimised, and the good influence maintained at the highest point. No scholar who has any gift for the examiner's craft - it must be conceded that some of the best scholars make very bad examiners - should decline to take his share in the necessary work of examinations, or to use his best wits in their proper conduct and constant improvement. And there is another point in regard to which it is well to be frank. While there is a great deal to be said for the view that no pupil or student can be properly examined except by his own teacher, and while it is probably true that no one can be a really successful examiner who has not at some time or other been a really successful teacher; it does not follow that every teacher, even every good teacher, is necessarily a good examiner of other people's pupils. He may be the very worst. The truth is that the examiner's art is a thing by itself, and demands the possession of qualities that are far from being common. A grave responsibility therefore rests upon those in whom the supreme control of examinations may be vested.

214. We have already referred (§157) to the Interim Report of the Consultative Committee. It contains many observations and suggestions for the conduct of examinations on which we need not comment. But we have been struck by the remarks of the Committee, in paragraphs 41 to 44 of their Report, on the effect of the Civil Service Examinations, and the prizes offered thereby, in withdrawing from further study and from other openings a very large proportion of the able and industrious youth of the country. The Science Committee has been similarly impressed by this pronouncement. If young men between the ages of seventeen and twenty can by one examination secure permanent employment with an initial salary of 70 rising to 300 with further chances of promotion, and can by another secure 100 a year at once and in due course 450 or more, in both cases with superannuation benefits thrown in, what hope has the scholastic profession of receiving its due influx of able, studious, and well-educated youth? The Second Division Class has better pay and prospects than the teachers in Elementary Schools, the Intermediate Class better pay and prospects than the very great majority of masters in Secondary Schools; both draw upon the fund of youth which has also to supply good schoolmasters. If there were no other reason for the establishment of Scholarships for Higher education, they would be needed to counteract the influence of the Civil Service competitions as at present arranged. Without such Scholarships there is little prospect of attracting to Secondary Schools their proper supply of intelligent and well-qualified pupils; and there is just as little prospect of a due proportion of those pupils choosing the scholastic profession unless also the scale of salaries be raised at least to that of the Intermediate Class in the Civil Service, whose members at twenty-three would be earning 140 a year, with a sure expectation of advance to 450, and a chance of much more. Even so early as the years between fourteen and sixteen some of the better pupils leave Secondary Schools to become Learners in the Post Office, though that competition is intended to test the results of Elementary rather than of Secondary education. Between fourteen and sixteen, however, the field of selection is wide; between seventeen and twenty, as we know, it is lamentably narrow.


215. Having established as we believe that Modern Studies have been neglected in this island, that the circumstances of the present and the probable needs of the future demand their strenuous development in the interests of the nation, of all its several classes, and of individuals whose outlook needs breadth and adjustment to world conditions, we have traversed the field of school education and the province of the Universities, and surveyed the opportunities that exist

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for special study of various languages by those who are no longer in attendance at school or University. We have considered the method of instruction in relation to the various purposes which it is intended to serve, the training of teachers and the methods of examination by which the results of instruction and study may be tested. We are now in a position to formulate the conclusions which we have reached, and the recommendations which we desire to submit to the Government and the various education authorities of Great Britain. Although we have been led both by logic and by practical common sense to principles which require fundamental changes in methods and purposes and organisation of teaching and learning, we have attained such a measure of unanimity as appears to us satisfactory. But we have not obtained this concord by adherence to convention or by compromise on essential points of difference. We regret that some of our members have not been able to go with us the whole way. But the matters of divergent opinion, though important, seem to us few compared with those covered by substantial consensus; some of the criticism appears to the majority to be directed rather against the supposed general tendency of the Report than against the words and phrases which have been carefully chosen to express their meaning. However, the principles of education cannot for the most part be established by scientific proof or by the coincident results of universal experience. Our report with its dissentient notes may, as we hope, represent the substantial accord of intelligent and informed opinion on the subjects treated; together with such healthy conflict as to means and ends as is needed for judicious progress in regions still insufficiently explored.

216. The due advance of Modern Studies appears to us to require in the first place a change of spirit. We do not underrate, we may even be held by some to have unduly emphasised, the practical value of Modern Studies as affecting the material fortunes of the nation, its classes, and its individual citizens. But no department of knowledge can obtain its highest development unless it be inspired by an ideal. That ideal of humane learning concerned with the thought, the life, the achievements, the psychology, in fact the entire history of modern nations, we have endeavoured to indicate and define; and we have found an encouraging example in the highest results attained during many centuries by the culture based on the records of ancient civilisation. What has been done through the study of the dead peoples of Greece and Rome, can be done, we conceive, through the study of the living peoples of the habitable globe in proportion to their several contributions to the art of living. Modern Studies must for such purposes be pursued with like intensity of purpose, with like faith and sympathy, with like seriousness and accuracy, and a like ideal of scholarship.

217. On the other hand we recognise that the great extension of learning in modern times necessitates a rectification of proportions in school education. The time available in certain schools for the study of languages can no longer be so large a part of the whole as it has been even in the recent past. But in view of the importance of languages both for humane learning and for practical ends we consider that the diminished time must be turned to the best advantage; and this can only be done, as we conceive, by concentration on a limited objective. Fewer languages must be taught to the majority; but those that are taught and studied must be carried to a higher point. We do not believe that the adoption of this principle need interfere with the wider studies of those pupils who exhibit exceptional capacity for languages. But we hold that the main object of language instruction in school must be to give a sound training in the first principles and a firm basis on which further studies can be built up in later life. (Conclusion 16.) And we attach the greatest importance to the provision of opportunities for such further study in the Universities, in great institutions for the whole-time study of languages, and, on a less ambitious scale, by means of part-time classes for adults and adolescents. The rest of our specific conclusions and recommendations concern means for the realisation of our ideal, and for the furtherance of our purposes.

218. We have separated the results of our enquiries and deliberations into Conclusions which deal with general and specific principles for the conduct of instruction and education, and Recommendations which propose certain policies and measures to be carried out by the Government and other education authorities, both public and private. These Conclusions and Recommendations here follow in due order. Though the Recommendations, if adopted, must involve considerable expense, we consider that this and other similar expenditure for like purposes will have to be faced, if this nation is to retain its high position in the civilised world; and we believe that all such expenditure, if wisely directed and controlled, will in a short time be compensated by national profit, to say nothing of indirect and greater benefits.


The figures in brackets refer to paragraphs

1. In democratic countries, above all, education is a national necessity, as well as a profitable investment. The best education is the best bargain, and well worth the time, trouble, thought, and whatever else may be required for its purchase. For reconstruction and recuperation after the war, improved education is a vital need for all national and individual ends; the highest as well as the humblest, and the humblest as well as the highest. (28-59, 62.)

2. No part of our national education has remained so far below the standard of national and individual requirement as that which is concerned with foreign countries and foreign peoples of the present day, and which employs living languages as its instrument. (24-9.)

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3. Modern Studies can provide the systematised knowledge which is urgently needed for the increase of wealth, public and private, for information, practical and scientific, for the instruction of the rulers and the ruled, and for the enlightenment of the public. They can be made the basis of a training to widen outlook, to cultivate imagination and taste, to develop powers of accurate thought and expression, as well as for the discipline of the mind and character. Their many uses are still imperfectly understood. (30-59, 80.)

4. Languages are a means, and not an end in themselves. This obvious fact need not always be prominent in instruction; but it should never be forgotten in connexion with Modern Studies as a part of education. (Definition (b), p. 1.)

5. The importance of the several languages varies according to the political, economic, artistic, and intellectual achievements of the peoples to which they belong, and according to the size of the areas in which they are the main or a secondary means of intercourse. (65.)

6. English is the most important language both because of the great and populous areas over which standard English is immediately comprehensible to all inhabitants, and because of the world-wide extension of its use as a secondary means of intercommunication. But for the intimate knowledge of any foreign country no secondary means of intercourse is of much value, and even for the narrowest practical purposes the native language of the country is greatly superior to any alien tongue or lingua franca. Though Britons, more than the citizens of any other country, need to know foreign peoples and foreign lands, the very general use of English throughout the world is an actual impediment to them in the acquisition of such knowledge. This impediment can only be removed by the systematic development of Modern Studies. (32, 16, 39, 40, etc.)

7. The most important European language for us is French. (65.)

8. Next in importance among the tongues of Europe are, in alphabetical order, German, Italian, Russian and Spanish. Values will be altered after the war, but the constitution of this group is hardly likely to be changed. (66-8.)

9. We do not attempt to class the other languages of the world; but some have great importance, and a large number have a certain value. (63, 64, 69, 70.)

10. If any artificial language is to fulfil the purposes for which it should be most useful, it needs further development and a far greater number of adepts. (71-2.)

11. The prospects of Modern Studies depend on the esteem of the public. All classes and almost all sections of the public have rated them below their true value; in the upper classes parents have been indifferent to learning; in the lower classes they have taken a short-sighted view of the children's interests; until all classes and all sections have come to see personal and national advantage in furthering them, due progress can never be made, (14, 23-9, 39-40, 60-1.)

Home Instruction

12. Familiarity with one or more modern languages in early childhood may be of great value, but it should be followed up by systematic instruction. (74.)

Residence Abroad

13. Residence abroad is the easiest way of learning a language; but study at home is desirable as a preparation for study abroad; and without deliberate and systematic study no language can be properly learnt. (33, 75-6.)

14. Residence abroad is in all cases a useful supplement to Modern Studies pursued at home. For teachers of all grades it is an essential supplement; for the higher posts prolonged and methodical study in the foreign country will generally be necessary and always advantageous. Visits and study on the spot should be renewed from time to time. (75-6.)

Elementary Schools

15. Under present circumstances it is not desirable to introduce modern languages into the great majority of Elementary Schools, though in special schools of this class, keeping their pupils beyond the age of fourteen, good work can be and has been done. Compulsory Continuation, if introduced, would alter the conditions of the question here considered. (77.)

Secondary Schools

16. The function of Secondary Schools with regard to languages is to give a sound training in the principles of language and a firm basis on which further studies can be built up in later life, if need or desire prompts. (87, 90.)

17. For this purpose it is most valuable that one language should be learned as thoroughly as circumstances permit. To study two or three languages without success in any is of little disciplinary or intellectual and of no practical value. Success in one language is the best preparation for and encouragement to further study in later life. (89, 90, etc.)

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18. Compulsory Latin and compulsory Greek at the Universities tend to impede the thorough study of any language in schools, and are a special impediment to the study of modern languages and to the further studies based upon these. (93, 171.)

19. We recognise the great value of Greek and Latin in the discipline of intellect, taste, and character for those whose inclination and ability fit them to profit thereby. We do not wish to diminish the rewards and facilities for Classical study, but we claim for Modern Studies equal rewards and facilities and a full proportion of the best brains. If less talent passed into the world untrained, we believe that there would be enough brains for all the studies that are needed for national purposes. (58, 93, 156-7.)

20. So far as the great Public Schools are concerned, we consider that their examinations for Entrance Scholarships still tend to lay too much stress on language in general and on Latin and Greek in particular. The ablest boys thus receive a premature bias towards Classical scholarship which is not only detrimental to Modern Studies but incompatible with the ideals of general education which the authorities of the Public Schools themselves profess. (125-6.)

21. We concur in the dominant opinion that those who continue till the age of sixteen under full-time instruction (other than technical) should receive, up to the stage which roughly corresponds with that time of life, a good general education. But we do not hold that all such pupils should be treated alike. (128, 129.)

22. In particular, we consider that the great differences in capacity to benefit by the study of languages should receive full recognition in Secondary Schools. Those few who after a full trial fail to show progress in the first language attempted should abandon the study of foreign languages and devote their time to other subjects, receiving their literary education through the medium of English. The next class should endeavour to master one language, preferably a modern language. Others may attain command of two or three or even four languages at school. Inferior talents will profit by concentration on a limited objective. A sufficient interval should be allowed to elapse between the beginning of the first language at school and the beginning of a second. (89, 91, 93-6, 106, 133.)

23. Those pupils who are unable to attain to the active use of a language may, nevertheless, learn to read one accurately and fluently. Those who may master one or more can with advantage learn one or two others for reading purposes only. The method of teaching languages for reading only should be the subject of experiments. (89, 97, 202.)

24. It appears to the majority of us far from certain that the early beginning of foreign languages at schools is advantageous to their study or to education in general. (115-20.)

25. Good instruction in the principles and use of the English language is the best basis for the study of foreign languages. Conversely, the teaching of foreign languages should be made to develop the mastery of the mother tongue. (96, 212.)

26. If only one foreign language is likely to be learnt, a modern language should be preferred. (92.)

27. A second foreign language should not be begun unless and until there is a good prospect of satisfactory progress in the first. (91.) If a second language be taken, it should not necessarily be Latin. (93.)

28. The congestion of the time-table in Secondary Schools appears to us partly due to the attempt to teach the majority more languages than they can hope to master even for reading purposes. (113, 133, 134.)

29. But any language that is taught should receive an adequate allowance of time. Otherwise the time given will be wasted. (95.)

30. We consider the division of schools below the stage of the First School Certificate into Classical and Modern Sides to be unsound in principle and it does not appear to have been successful in practice. (128-9.)

31. The study of a language for commercial purposes must be based on the systematic acquisition of its principles and practice. The special terminology can be best acquired after the business has become known by practical experience. (35, 180.)

Organisation of language teaching in schools

32. Language teaching in schools presents great difficulties which can only be overcome by highly qualified teachers who have learned the economy of time by thorough organisation of work, careful allocation of responsibility, and by skilful classification of the pupils. Late entry, early leaving, entry at irregular times, are evils which especially impair the efficient teaching of languages in those schools which have the shortest average school-life. (107-110.)

Higher Studies in Secondary Schools

33. Those pupils who, after the stage of the First School Examination, elect to specialise in Modern Studies, should study the literature, the history, and the language, as an interdependent whole. They should be encouraged to read widely for themselves, though scholarship should also be assiduously cultivated. English history, language, and literature thus treated in combination, appear to us well suited for higher study in schools. (53-58, 99-102.)

34. Entrance Scholarships to the Universities should not be given for modern languages alone but for scholarly knowledge of the language, the history, and the literature taken together. (158.)

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35. In the award of History Scholarships to or at the Universities we consider that more credit should be given for the power to read and translate one or more foreign languages accurately and readily. (159-62.)


36. In all our Universities the departments of Modern Studies are undermanned and the staffs are underpaid. The deficiency is conspicuous even in French and German, where it is relatively least. For the other main languages of Europe there is little provision; though praiseworthy efforts have been made during the war. In no University and for no country is there any adequate provision for Modern Studies in the history and economics of great national areas. (147-9.)

37. The training of able and accomplished scholars must precede the multiplication of Professorships. (150.)

38. The direction of Modern Studies in our Universities should be in the hands of British scholars. (152-53.)

39. But foreign Assistants, employed on a temporary basis, and working under the direction of the Professor, are a most valuable adjunct to any school of Modern Studies. (154.)

40. For countries, the study of which has been hitherto neglected, we may have to rely for a time on the aid of foreigners but it should only be for a time. (154.)

41. The supply of well-qualified entrants for Modern Studies at the Universities is insufficient and must be augmented by specific measures; it will, however, improve when Modern Studies are justly valued. (156-158.)

42. Modern Studies at the Universities need to be conceived in a comprehensive spirit. Language, literature, and philology, must be supplemented by history in the widest sense of the term, and considerable latitude should be given to the bent of individual students. History includes economic history of the past and present. (12, 57, 166-170.)

43. We regard the Intermediate examination imposed in many Universities as a period of supplementary education which may be but should not be needed. In practice it shortens the Honours Course in Modern Studies by almost a year. (169.)

44. Even if only one country be the main object of study, three years are not too much for an Honours Course; and such a Course should, if possible, be supplemented both before and after graduation by residence abroad. (164, 165, 169-70.)

45. A good pass degree is valuable; but it should require the thorough study of one foreign language, rather than the superficial study of two or more. (172.)

46. The field of Modern Studies is so great that it can only be compassed by the cooperation of all members of the University staff who are able to help; and at Oxford and Cambridge by the cooperation of the Colleges with the University. (173-6.)

Other Means of Instruction

47. Neither schools nor Universities can supply the nation with scholars sufficient for its needs in all the languages. Facilities for study in later life are also-required. Evening classes are useful, but opportunities for intensive study are most needed. (18, 178-185. Recommendations, 36-39.)

Training of Teachers

48. To call forth a proper supply of well-qualified teachers in any subject, pay and prospects need further and substantial improvement; especially in Modern Studies, for which preparation must be long and expensive. (186-191.)

49. Teachers for schools should be practically trained and should be encouraged to pass qualifying tests in the language they propose to teach. (186-88.) Good phonetic training we regard as specially important. (203-4.)

50. At least some proportion of teachers should specialise in one language rather than in two. (189.)


51. We regard the principles of the "Direct Method" as sound, although liable to misapplication by unskilful or ill-qualified teachers. The importance of mere fluency of speech should not be overrated. Grammatical accuracy and scholarship should be demanded. Pupils should be encouraged to read for themselves and to cooperate actively in their own instruction. A main object of language teaching should be to fit the pupils to learn languages for themselves. The work in schools should be carefully planned, and, as far as possible, a consistent method should be followed throughout each school. (194-200.)

52. Methods of teaching pupils to read languages accurately and rapidly should be developed and made the subject of experiment. (202.)

53. The adoption of uniform grammatical terminology in the various languages taught in schools we regard as most desirable. (201.)


54. Examination methods should be reviewed and modified. Methods of examining in literature require special attention. Oral examination should be more general and should not

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be used merely as a means to test candidates in speech. Translation into English should be an exercise in the skilful use of the mother tongue. Translation into the foreign tongue should be deferred until the higher stages. (208-13.)

Influence of Public Competitions

55. Competitions for posts in the Civil Service should be arranged so as to divert from studies useful to the nation a smaller proportion of available talent. Before the war they had very bad effects, especially on the teaching profession, which offered few comparable rewards. (214.)


The Committee recommend:-

1. That Modern Studies be energetically fostered by all public and local Authorities concerned with education and with public and private business. (30-59.)

2. That means be taken to bring the business world into closer touch with education. (28, 61.)

3. That an Advisory Committee be set up for the purposes mentioned in Recommendations 17, and 41-45.


4. That the scheme of the Treasury Committee on the examination for Class I of the Home Civil Service be adopted in its essentials, so far as Modern Studies are concerned. (17, 46, 210.)

5. That the systematic and scientific study of foreign countries be encouraged by the Foreign Office. (41.)

6. That a higher language qualification be required for the General Consular Service and for Student Interpreters for the Far East. (44-45.)

7. That before going out Student Interpreters receive an intensive training at home in the language and the phonetics of the country to which they are allotted. (45.)

8. That more opportunity be given to officers of the Army and Navy to acquire knowledge of modern foreign languages. (48-50.)

9. That a better and fuller use should be made of women trained in modern languages. (140.)

10. That phonetics form part of the training of all entrants to the public service whose duty will lie in foreign countries, and that, with this in view, special assistance should be given to institutions for phonetic research. (46, 63.)

11. That the Government should undertake a survey of African languages.


12. That the business community in every considerable centre of foreign trade or of manufacture for foreign markets should take steps, in conjunction with the education authorities, to further the formation of institutes of languages, both for full-time and for part-time study. (70.)

13. That business men should individually and collectively encourage the study of foreign languages by those members of their staff who, possessing good business ability, have shown capacity for such study, by arranging for their full-time attendance at an institute of languages either at home or abroad. (36.)

14. That industrial and commercial organisations dealing with foreign countries should make a fuller and more adequate use of the supply of women of trained intelligence now proceeding from our Universities and the upper forms of Secondary Schools with an adequate knowledge of foreign languages. (140.)

15. That commercial houses and industrial firms should bring to the knowledge of the school authorities the opportunities which present themselves from time to time for those who have special aptitude for foreign languages. (27, 36.)


16. That neither Latin nor Greek be compulsory for an Arts degree in any of our Universities. (93, 171.)

17. That a scheme be prepared and sanctioned by legislation for the gradual increase within ten years from the end of the war of the staff for Modern Studies in the Universities. The new Professorships and Lectureships should be some of language and philology, some of literature, some of the history and institutions, some of the economics of the five principal European countries. The number suggested is 55 Professorships, and 110 Lectureships: the allowance for French being half as much again as for each of the other four languages. The allotment of these posts and first appointments to them should be entrusted to the Advisory Committee mentioned in Recommendation 3 above. (68, 150.)

18. That Modern Studies at the Universities comprehend for each of the five principal European countries, language, history, economics, literature, and philology, as an interdependent whole, with a good general basis of scholarship and knowledge, but considerable latitude of specialisation in one direction or another. That recent and present day conditions of each country studied be included so far as possible. (68, 167-171.)

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19. That Spanish, Italian, and Russian studies receive attention at the Universities commensurate with that given to German. (67, 68.)

20. That interchange of Professors with foreign countries be arranged whenever possible. (76, 154.)

21. That the proposals of the Committee of the Garton Foundation (1916) receive the careful attention of the proper authorities with a view to suitable action. (76.)

22. That encouragement be given to research in little known foreign languages. (64.)


23. That school teachers of modern studies should be encouraged to qualify themselves for University posts. (188.)

24. That Secondary Schools in any school area should be differentiated according to the type of instruction, higher or lower, that they aim at providing. (141-144.)

25. That Secondary Schools in any school area should be graded according as they are equipped to supply Higher instruction in one or more of the main subjects of school instruction or in none. (141-144.)

26. That transfer from one school to another after the First School Examination should be facilitated when the needs of the pupil demand it. (144.)

27. That the authorities should take measures to diminish the evils arising from late entry, from irregular entry, and from early and irregular leaving, especially in those Secondary Schools where the average school life is shortest. (110.)

28. That facilities be given for the study of Spanish, Italian, and Russian in schools, so far as can conveniently be arranged. (67.)

29. That in every school giving instruction in modern foreign languages a good reference and lending library of books be built up. (77, 98, 199.)

30. That teachers of modern languages be granted facilities to visit foreign countries from time to time, and that periodical leave of absence on full pay with an allowance for expenses be given for this purpose. (76.)

31. That the system of interchange of Assistants between British and foreign schools be largely extended and so developed as to include other languages than French and German (76, 151.)

32. That classes for modern languages should not be unduly large. (111.)

33. That the hours of teachers using the Direct Method should not be too long. (112.)

34. That means be taken to encourage visits of school-children to foreign countries, the interchange of children between foreign homes and British, and, if possible, the interchange of school-children between Britain and friendly neighbouring countries. (76.)


35. That the London School of Oriental Studies receive the continuous and liberal support of Government without detriment to other existing schools for Oriental study. (64.)

36. That an institution be established in London, similar to the School of Oriental Studies, for the intensive study of the greatest possible number of European tongues, with the geography, resources, industries, and all valuable information concerning the minor countries. (70.)

37. That in the several great centres of population opportunities should be given for the intensive study of the languages most important in the district, with phonetic instruction and the aid of foreign assistants. (64, 70, 181.)

38. That the London School of Economics be a centre for the study of the products, the industry, the trade, and the economic conditions, of the chief European countries, and also of North and South America, Asia, and Africa. (68.)


39. That the existing system of evening and other part-time classes in modern languages for seniors and adults be further developed, and that continuity through the summer months be maintained so far as possible, allowing for a reasonable holiday. (182, 183.)

40. That it should be made worth the while of the teachers for such classes to undergo some training if they have not already had sufficient. (185.)


41. That subventions be granted to enable students at the Universities to pass their long vacations abroad and if possible some period of their course at a foreign University. (76, 164.)

42. That Studentships be granted to enable promising students to spend a year in study abroad after graduation; and that for students of exceptional merit this subvention be continued for a further period. (76, 165.)

43. That students who, in the course of their preparation to become teachers in Elementary Schools, show high ability for Modern Studies be given Studentships to enable them to carry their study further after their training is completed. (77.)

44. That Scholarships should be provided from a Parliamentary grant to maintain throughout an Honours course in Modern Studies at a University those who before entry show high excellence in modern European languages with their history and literature. (157, 158.)

45. That the regulation and allotment between the various Universities and University Colleges of the above Scholarships, subventions, and Studentships be entrusted to the Advisory Committee mentioned in Recommendation 3.

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46. That teachers of modern languages for Secondary Schools should be practically trained in schools authorised for the purpose and should receive systematic instruction in phonetics. (186.)

47. That a test of qualification for teaching modern languages in Secondary Schools should be set up by Government, and a Certificate granted, and that it should be made worth the while of teachers to obtain this Certificate. (187, 188.)

48. That after, say, five years' experience in teaching a Higher Certificate should also be awarded to teachers as the result of a searching test. (188.)


49. That the Secondary School Examinations Council and the Civil Service Commissioners give their attention to the improvement and development of examination tests in Modern Subjects. (105, 208.)

50. That in examinations oral tests as well as written should be used wherever possible, and that not only pronunciation, speech, etc., but also the benefit derived by the candidate from his study, should be thereby tested, at least at the later stages of education. (209.)

51. That in the Second School Examination Classical, Mathematical, and Scientific candidates be encouraged to pass a translation test in one or more modern languages, and that those who pass or pass with distinction in such tests receive a corresponding endorsement on their Certificates. (97.)

52. That at the earliest suitable opportunity after the close of the war the Board of Education, Scotch Education Department, and the Civil Service Commissioners should jointly undertake an enquiry into the methods employed in French State and University Examinations such as those for the Agrégation and the Licence. (208.)


53. That a Committee be appointed to enquire into the potentialities of artificial languages and the desirability or encouraging the development and use of one. (72.)

The Committee desire to express their high appreciation of the services of their Secretary, Mr. A. E. Twentyman, whose great knowledge of educational conditions both in this land and abroad has been of conspicuous value.

We have the honour to be, Sir,
    Your obedient Servants,


A. E. TWENTYMAN (Secretary).
2nd April, 1918.

*Subject to the Reservations.

†Subject to Reservations (v), (vi), (vii).

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While we agree in general with the rest of the Report, we are unable to sign that portion of it (pages 24-41) dealing with the treatment of modern languages in schools, without putting on record certain reservations. Even here there is, indeed, much to which we cordially assent, and, in particular, we would wish to express our fullest and most hearty agreement with those paragraphs which set out in a more general way the aims of language teaching and the conception of a course in Modern Studies in the upper forms. We fear, however, that the general effect of the Report, carefully guarded though the language in each particular paragraph may be, would be to encourage changes in the curriculum which we should deplore; and some of the suggestions made seem to us to be difficult to carry out in practice; it is, for instance, difficult to see how a school could be organised in accordance with the suggestion made in paragraph 128, that "so far as languages are concerned, the classification should be into those who ought to learn only one language and those who ought to learn two or more, with a small section, perhaps, of those who need not be troubled with foreign languages at all." If, as is suggested elsewhere, there should be free choice for the second and third languages, a very complicated organisation would result, which would, in our opinion, even if it could be carried cut, be detrimental to the general work of the school.

We think, too, that there would be a great loss if, as is in more than one place suggested, the work of a considerable proportion of the pupils was limited to a single language, especially as it is obvious that for the large majority the first, and often the only language learned, would be French. It seems to us that French does not and cannot by itself provide all that is necessary for language training. The Report says that there are no easy languages; this is, in one sense, undoubtedly true; of no language, least of all French, can it be said that the acquirement of a complete mastery is an easy task. But, on the other hand, in many ways it is true, as is commonly stated, that French is an easy language for the English child. It may, indeed , be said of French that the early stages are too easy, the later too difficult. To write simple French sentences is easy, to speak them is also easy if once the great difficulties of pronunciation have been overcome; to read simple French books is easy, so easy, indeed, that for a child of average ability, neither diligence nor attention is needed. But as the pupil advances, he is confronted with difficulties all the more disconcerting because they are to some extent intangible. These difficulties exist in fine shades of meaning, subtle variations and exactitudes, idiomatic terms of expression. The immature mind is unfit to appreciate and master such fine points which appertain to the mentality of a people more acutely intellectual than the English, and many pupils, including a large number who have good ability will, even in their later years, be without the strongly developed literary insight which is necessary for appreciating them.

For these reasons we do not hold that French is the language best suited to discipline and train the youthful mind to an appreciation of language and its use. If it is the first language learned, it requires supplementing by a second language, and it should not be taken for granted that a child who makes no progress in French is for that reason alone incapable of acquiring any foreign language. We were informed by some of our witnesses that certain children were able to succeed with Latin or German although they had failed with French. We are not surprised at this. The kinship of the German language with our own affords the beginner a sense of familiarity, while the resemblance in form and spirit between many types of English and German lyric and ballad poetry makes the latter congenial to many British boys and girls. Moreover, while German is effectively easier than Latin, it affords by its system of inflections and varieties of construction some of the advantages of which we have spoken above. For these reasons we hold it a valuable subject among school studies. But, in general, Latin appears to us to be best suited to supplement French. The language presents from the outset difficulties which demand diligence and discipline if they are to be surmounted. The simplest sentence in Latin draws the attention of the learner to the relation of one word to another; and, unless that of phrase to phrase is understood, the more complicated constructions cannot be unravelled. Even the earliest attempts at framing Latin sentences are lessons in the virtue of accuracy. In the repeated effort towards a mastery of these particularities, the learner insensibly comes to grasp the fundamental principles that underlie speech and to acquire the habit of exact expression which is the aim of the scholar. The boy or girl thus trained has a weapon which should be of avail whenever he or she desires to acquire a new language. We should, therefore, desire to see maintained the tradition of English Higher Education, that, whenever possible, Latin should be regarded as one of the staple subjects to be begun during the earlier stages of school life. Some of the proposals contained in the Report would imperil the future of Latin as a school study. This would, we believe, be a serious misfortune, not only to education generally, but to modern studies also.


We should wish to emphasise more strongly than is done in paragraph 93 the importance of Latin for those who wish to carry on modern studies to any high level. Some of our witnesses emphasised the importance of Latin as a foundation for the study of the living

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languages, and among these were included several who were chiefly concerned with their practical and commercial application. So far as the Romance languages are concerned it is obvious that a full understanding of their structure and development cannot be attained without a knowledge of their parent Latin. Further, when we consider how Latin thought and Latin literature have, directly or indirectly, moulded the minds and affected the modes of expression of thinkers and writers for successive generations in Western Europe, it becomes clear that we need to know the former if we would fully appreciate the latter. At any rate, we consider it almost indispensable that those who propose to pass on to more advanced work at the University should have received such training in Latin as will enable them to use their knowledge of the language, whether in connection with the history and analysis of French and other European languages, the influence of classical on modern literature, or for historical studies. The evidence given by the Universities shows that many of those teachers occupied with modern studies, whether with English, foreign languages or with history, attach great value to a knowledge of Latin. Work at the University will be very severely handicapped if any large proportion of those following any branch of modern studies find themselves under the necessity of taking up the study of Latin after entering the University; it is much better that this work should have been done in school. Under these circumstances we cannot endorse the Recommendation (No. 16) that at this moment Latin should entirely cease to be a compulsory subject for admission to an Honours Course in Arts at the Universities. We are aware of the difficulties that in some cases may result, and we dislike the whole system of compulsory subjects. We hope that eventually it may be possible to do away with them, but this will only be possible when there have been established normal school courses through which, in fact, the majority of the pupils will have passed. When this is the case, then the course of instruction at the Universities will be based on the assumption that this has been done. If Latin is necessary, those who desire to enter fin Honours Course will, in fact, take it without compulsion, but we are not yet sufficiently advanced for this.


In paragraph 91 it is suggested that "a pupil may have very useful abilities and yet be incapable of learning any foreign languages; alter a full trial his time and efforts should be devoted to other studies", and in paragraph 141 it is also suggested that "it might be worth while to try the experiment of secondary education on the lower plane without any foreign language at all; more highly developed instruction in English supplying the place of the foreign language".

While we do not dispute that there may be individual pupils who, sometimes owing to bad instruction in their earlier years, sometimes to an inherent incapacity, show a marked disability for the acquisition of foreign languages, we have to recognise that the same facts apply to an equal or perhaps even greater extent to other subjects of the curriculum, such as, for instance, mathematics. But we hold that the study of one or more languages other than English should continue to be regarded as it now is as an essential part of any higher education, that pupils in higher schools should be expected to learn at least one such language, and it is reasonable to make the award of any Secondary School certificate dependent upon a moderate success in this as in the other regular subjects of instruction. We do not suggest that foreign languages should necessarily be imposed upon all schools which provide an organised course of instruction extending up to the age of 16, for there is probably a real necessity for such schools with a strong technical and practical bias, but we consider it essential that they should be clearly distinguished from Secondary Schools conducted under the present system, the object of which is to provide the highest type of general education.


We are unable to accept without qualification Conclusion 30: "We consider the division of schools below the stage of the First School Certificate into Classical and Modern Sides to be unsound in principle and it does not appear to have been successful in practice", and we therefore desire to define more clearly than is done in paragraphs 128 and 129 on which this conclusion is based, our attitude towards Modern Sides. We recognise that in the past they have often failed to meet the objects with which they were established, but this has been, at least to a large extent, due to causes which are in the process of removal or are capable or remedy, and we do not consider that it would be wise to press for their complete abolition. The chief reason for their comparative failure in the past seems to have been that no clear distinction was made between the educational requirements of those who desired a modern literary course and those who wished to pay special attention to science and mathematics; as a result of this there has been no clear educational aim placed before them. Secondary causes have been the want of scholarships at the Universities and the indifference often shown by the commercial world to the importance of the subjects with which a properly organised Modern Side would deal; serious injury has also been done by the continued maintenance of a separate Army Class, into which large numbers of the boys who would normally have been an important element in the Modern Side have been segregated. These causes working together have militated against the establishment of a high intellectual ambition, although good work has in fact been done in some schools notwithstanding all these impediments. If these causes are clearly recognised and, as they can be, remedied, then we see no reason why Modern Sides should not prove in the future successful in a way in which they never have been in the past. Indeed, the principles

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urged in the Report, with which we cordially agree, cannot be carried out unless there is a Modern Side as distinct from the Classical Side and the Science Side in the upper portion of the school. If this is the case it becomes a subordinate matter of school organisation precisely at what stage they begin. Really the question will present itself in the form whether there shall be a Classical Side, for more and more, as information before us shows, the bulk of the school will be following a course which is predominantly modern, whether with or without Latin. Though it may be regarded, as the Report suggests, as accidental that some boys learn Latin, French and German, others Latin, French and Greek, we are not prepared to regard the difference between a curriculum which is based largely upon Latin and Greek and one in which, e.g., French and German hold a prominent place, us unimportant. In small schools it will probably be most convenient to keep all boys together up to the age of 16, allowing for considerable differentiation of curriculum; in the larger schools it may be found that a fuller separation may with advantage begin earlier.

One important reason for organisation in different Sides is that this would strengthen the form system to which, together with the Report (§108), we should attach much importance. When boys who are working at many different subjects are put together in the same form, it may easily follow that an unduly large proportion of the work will be done in "sets", and, to use the words of a witness quoted in the Report (§108), "the 'set' system destroyed the esprit de corps of the form and could not be made effective for instruction, much less for education". For this, among other reasons, it may be found that the maintenance of a separate Modern Side will be desirable.

In this connection we wish to draw attention to the inconveniences that result in many schools from the maintenance of a separate Army Class. The education of boys who are going to Sandhurst is exactly the same as those who are going into commerce; the only reason why army classes are maintained appears to be the additional stress which can be laid on diligence. The object has been to prevent boys going to coaches. It should not be beyond the possibilities of school discipline to attain this end by other means. The present system is, we are convinced, bad for the boys, bad for the army, and bad for the other boys who are following a modern course.


We should wish lo lay more emphasis than is done in the Report (§§114-121) on the arguments against the later age for the commencement of Foreign Languages. The changes advocated by some of the witnesses which appear to be countenanced in the Report would, so far as we understand them, mean in practice that few, if any, pupils would begin a foreign language until shortly before reaching the age of 12; the first language learned would normally be French; the second language would not be begun until two further years had elapsed. The result of this would be that, save in very exceptional cases, Latin would not be begun until almost the age of 14; when applied to the Public School system this would imply that Latin would disappear entirely from the curriculum of the Preparatory School and would be postponed till after entrance to the Public School. In any case the beginning of Latin would coincide with the first serious work done in natural science and would come just at the time when the stress of mathematical teaching was for many most severe. If Latin were begun so late as this and any real progress were to be made, a very large amount of time would be required; the strain on the timetable would come just at that period in the school where it is now most felt, for in every subject there is a desire to use the important years from 12 to 16 to the fullest extent. The almost inevitable result would be that Latin would fall out of the curriculum of the majority of pupils and, even in the larger Public Schools, it would probably take a position similar to that which Greek now holds. For reasons which we explain elsewhere, we believe that, not only would this destroy the possibility of good classical work, but would be very detrimental to Modern Studies themselves.

We must therefore enquire carefully as to the reasons given for this very drastic change. It is maintained that the average boy or girl runs no risk of loss if he postpones to the age of 12 any endeavour to learn a language other than English under school conditions. From this opinion we dissent. We fully recognise that the whole matter is one of great difficulty, and that it has not hitherto been the subject of sufficient investigation. We consulted many of our witnesses with regard to it; we found great variety of opinion. What we may call the new system was strongly supported among others by those who had had experience of its actual working in Scotland. Many others, including some who had had long experience in teaching young pupils, both boys and girls, firmly dissented from it. The representatives of boys' Preparatory Schools, all of whom had spent their lives in teaching young boys, gave no support. Some of those who had taken the lead in the reform of language teaching were to be found among the advocates of an early beginning. Representatives of English training colleges who gave evidence were unable to offer us any advice. As against the arguments put forward in paragraph 117 of the Report in favour of the newer system, we should appeal to the overwhelming amount of experience both in this and in other countries that at least a large number of pupils, both boys and girls, have in fact made substantial progress in languages before the age of 12, and that the knowledge gained at this early stage forms a valuable foundation on which further advance can be made. If again we analyse the intellectual processes required during the first stages of learning a language such as French, they appear to be such as may properly be demanded from young pupils. We have first the acquisition of a vocabulary which

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deals entirely with common objects, actions and ideas, all of which will already be within the comprehension of the pupils. This would be borne out by an investigation of the nature of the vocabulary which is in fact set to be learned in any of the new textbooks which provide material for the first years of a language course. Secondly, we have grammatical forms and ideas, all of which are simple. Experience which ought not to be completely neglected shows that these can be and are learned and understood at all early age. Lastly, we have the learning of pronunciation; it is probably agreed by all that young pupils have more readiness in catching and imitating the sounds of a foreign language than those who are older; we believe that it is a very great advantage that this difficult and tedious process should be got through at an early age, when time can best be spared for it.

We must draw attention also to the great importance which in the newer methods of teaching is attached to the principle that the foreign language should be directly connected with actions and things, and the use of English as an intermediary be dispensed with. If this contention is true, surely it is an additional reason why the language may be begun early, for it greatly simplifies the intellectual processes involved.

What seems to be of the greatest importance in all language teaching is the attainment of a full mastery of the elements of the language so that within a limited scope it can be read with fluency, spoken and written with facility. Until this has been attained higher work should not be attempted, but this attainment requires time and constant practice in the earlier stages. For this purpose it is of great advantage to begin young. When the first stage is postponed then in fact it often becomes necessary to press on to more advanced work before the earlier stage has been really finished and what has been learned has become part of the unconscious equipment of the mind. This fault is very evident in many modern schemes of work; the different stages follow one another too rapidly; difficult work is begun before the preliminary foundation has been adequately laid. If the earlier years are not used as they can be, the result will inevitably be congestion in the higher parts of the school and hasty work done without that element of spare time and leisure which is one of the first requisites of all study and which is now often neglected.

It must be remembered that many boys and girls who learn French, especially those who in later years take up special work in classics or science, will in fact give up all, or all but a very small occupation with the language after passing their First School Examination. Sometimes they will wish to start a second modern language, sometimes to use their spare time for other subjects. It is very desirable that the knowledge of French which they have should not be limited to that which can be learned in four years.

Again, though we fully accept the doctrine that translation into and from a foreign language is an art which should not be attempted until a good knowledge of both English and the foreign language has been acquired, it is an art to which we attach the highest importance, and we believe that unless regular practice has been given in it, many of the chief advantages of learning a foreign language have been lost. It is something different from learning a foreign language; it is in the nature of an application of the knowledge acquired which can only come later. When French is not begun till the age of 12 and Latin not begun till the age of 14, many boys and girls will in fact leave school before they have reached the stage at which translation, except of the most elementary kind, could be attempted with advantage.


The reasons which we have given in the previous paragraphs for differing from the Report as to the age at which Modern Languages should be begun necessarily entail differences as to the curriculum of Preparatory Schools and Preparatory Departments.

This matter is fully discussed in paragraphs 122-127 and 130-134. While there is much in these paragraphs with which we agree, we cannot accept the view which is expressly stated in paragraph 127 that "it is a mistake to attempt to teach two languages to the majority of boys before they are 13", and we should regret a re-organisation of the work of these schools which was based on this principle. It is therefore necessary that we should briefly state our own view on the matters discussed in these sections. The older system was that boys began Latin at a very early age, for instance at 8, or even before that, and that the majority began Greek at about the age of 10. The position of French was very undetermined, but so far as our information goes, it was generally begun in a rather half-hearted way at about the same age as Latin. This system seems to us to be open to the objections stated in the Report, viz., that languages are begun too early and that they take up too much time at this early stage. We agree also in the objections urged to the system by which candidates for scholarships in Public Schools have been practically forced to offer not only Latin, but also Greek, and we accept the conclusions made in the Report and in the Report of the Science Committee that Greek should be allowed to drop out from the curriculum of Preparatory Schools and departments; as a matter of fact, it has already practically disappeared in a large majority of these schools. Beyond this we are not able to go, and on these lines we believe that at any rate for the present a satisfactory solution of our present difficulties can be found. The languages taught before the age of 14 would then be limited to French and Latin. It would probably generally be found desirable that French should be started at about the age of 9 or 10, and that a considerable period should be allowed to elapse before Latin is begun.

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If these changes are made, we hope that it will be found that sufficient time is available for the other subjects of the curriculum which have hitherto been too much neglected and that a good grounding will still be made in one ancient and in one modern language. We would add that the time given to Latin was, and still is, in our opinion often excessive, and that one of the worst results of the scholarship system is that not only two ancient languages are required, but that the standard of work aimed at in Latin is too high.

It is suggested in the Report that those who advocate the earlier beginning of languages in these schools are too much influenced by the needs of the abler boys, and are apt to neglect the needs of those who show themselves slower at school work. We hold that while this is true of the older system under which both Latin and Greek were imposed upon Preparatory Schools, it does not apply to the modifications suggested. We believe that a very large majority of boys coming from more or less educated homes are quite capable intellectually of beginning French at about the age of 9 and Latin after an interval of about two years. We have moreover to recollect that, regarded from a national point of view, a most important function of the schools with which we are at this moment dealing is to give the highest possible intellectual training to those, and they are a large proportion of the pupils, who have all inherited aptitude for school studies. We regard with apprehension anything the result of which would be to lower the intellectual standard aimed at. As the sum of human activities grows, and human knowledge extends, the number of subjects taught in schools increases, and it becomes more and more important to use to the full the very important earlier years in which, under wise guidance, so much can be done to encourage intellectual curiosity and create systematic habits of work

If the view here taken is correct, then it will follow that the most important point for the improvement of Modern Language work will be, not the postponement of languages to the age of 12, but the provision of well organised schools for younger boys and girls. We should therefore welcome any change which would bring the existing Preparatory Schools within the scope of the public and national care of education, both by the extension to them of inspection, and by other means. In addition we would strongly press for the adequate provision of additional well staffed Preparatory Schools and departments in all large centres of population. We regard it as a serious blot on our present system that those who cannot afford high fees or do not wish to send their children away from home at an unduly early age, are now often deprived of the opportunity of giving them the best education suitable for their years. A regrettable result of this is that it is becoming with each year more difficult for any boy to win a scholarship at a Public School unless his parents can afford to send him to an expensive boarding school. It is, we believe, a serious loss to the nation that boys who are specially fitted to profit by the opportunities given by these scholarships are in this way too often prevented from winning them.


The statement as to the present classification of schools set out in paragraphs 82 to 84 does not appear to us to bring out with sufficient clearness certain points which are of great importance for school organisation as a whole, and in particular for the treatment of foreign languages. We, therefore, should wish to put forward the following classification:-

In the system of secondary education now existing in England, there are two types of schools which have this in common, that each of them provides a coherent and systematised course of study commencing from the earliest years, and continuing sometimes to the age of 16, sometimes to the age of 18, and even beyond that, to the Universities. These two types may be defined as, firstly, Secondary Schools under the control of the local authority, and, secondly, for boys, the Public Schools, and for girls the High Schools.

(a) There have arisen during the last 15 years a large and increasing number of Secondary Schools which receive practically all their pupils from the public Elementary Schools. The education given in them must be precisely adapted to link on to what has been given in the public Elementary School. When these schools were first established the age of transference from the Elementary to the Secondary School was often as high as 13, or even older; recent administrative changes have brought it about that in many districts the pupils are transferred at or about the age of 12. To this change we attach great importance, especially from the point of view of modern language teaching, for it ensures a full four years' course before the age of 16 when in future the first examination, which is the conclusion of this period of secondary education will normally be taken.

These schools, when organised on this principle, have many great advantages; the very large majority of pupils enter at the same age, having received the same preliminary training, and in them the difficulties of organisation referred to in paragraph 110 of the Report do not, or should not, occur. In these schools the general principles laid down in the Report can be, and so far as our information goes are, properly carried out. Modern languages have a place equal to their importance. The first language, other than English, attempted is in practically every case French. To this at least one year is given before any other language is attempted; we agree that, it would be desirable that for all, save exceptionally gifted pupils, there should be a period of two years before the beginning of a second language. We agree, also, that it is desirable on educational grounds that the pupils, when they reach the age of 14, should be allowed the alternative of beginning a second modern language, or Latin; we should agree with

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the Report in deprecating any attempt to force Latin upon the pupils. We also agree that for many of the pupils in these schools it would be preferable that no second language should be begun.

It is a difficult question of school organisation whether these three alternative courses should be provided in one or in different schools. If the latter alternative is accepted, it will in some cases be necessary to remove pupils from one school to another at the age of 14.

(b) The second class of schools which provide a clearly defined course of instruction are those which may in general be grouped under the head of Public Schools, including some of the great Day Schools in London and other large towns. The characteristic of them is that the pupils generally receive their earlier education either in the preparatory departments or other preparatory schools, the course of work in which is deliberately set out with the object of making it the best training for the more advanced work proper to Secondary Schools above the age of 12. For girls the place of these schools is taken by the High Schools (including some Endowed Schools) and to some extent by the large Boarding Schools of a semi-public character which have sprung up during recent years. We believe that the maintenance of this system, side by side with the other, is vital to the future intellectual success of the country, for if the scheme of education is to be truly national, it must reproduce to some extent the diversities which in fact form part of the national life. We have already dealt with the language curriculum of these schools which in some not unimportant points may properly differ from that of the first class.

(c) In these two types of schools, each of which is complete and self-sufficient, the problems of organisation are comparatively simple, and we believe that such difficulties as present themselves can easily be overcome. A much more serious problem is presented by the very numerous and important class of schools which hold an intermediary position between them. We mean the local grammar schools; many of these have a great history behind them, and on them in the past rested the chief responsibility for the higher education of all who could not afford or did not desire to go to an expensive boarding school. The importance of these schools in the national system is too often overlooked; it is to them that a very large majority of those occupied in commerce and industry and of the poorer professional men, and many of them are very poor, must send their children. They have also in the past provided, and it is hoped that they will in the future provide the opportunity for children belonging to the artisan class to get an education on the highest level. It is the virtue of these schools that above all others they have been attended by pupils belonging to different classes of the town in which they are situated, and we believe it is essential that this habit should continue and grow.

Just for this reason it may be difficult to fit these schools into any complete paper organisation, for it is always difficult to create administrative forms which would meet all the necessities of life. If we destroyed them or completely assimilated them to either of the other types, we should be rid of a troublesome problem, but English education would have lost that flexibility and adaptability which, as it seems to us, distinguishes it from the more highly systematised arrangements of other nations. It follows however from this very characteristic that acute difficulties of organisation occur in them which particularly affect the teaching of modern languages, for while the large proportion enter the grammar school at various ages from 8 or 9 upwards, others come from the Public Elementary Schools at about the age of 12. It is to these schools especially that criticisms such as those contained in the Report on the teaching of French in London schools apply. For it is in French that the disadvantages are most clearly seen. No subject requires such well organised and uniform classes, and no subject has been so overlooked in the past in dealing with the problem of promotion. It is clear that these faults must be removed. We do not think that the difficulties are insuperable, and we believe that they will be overcome as soon as there is a clearer realisation than now exists as to the educational importance of modern languages.

Valuable evidence was given to the Committee from more than one headmaster of schools of this type. They told us that a very great improvement can be made if the authorities of the school strictly insist that in all normal cases pupils should be required to enter not later than the age of 12, and that those who come later should be subjected to an examination to insure that they reach a requisite standard in the essential subjects of the curriculum. Evidence was given us to the effect that when rules of this kind have been strictly applied, they have not been followed by any diminution in the number of pupils. We therefore consider that it is the duty of the governing bodies of these schools to carry out this policy and that it is the duty of the local authority and the Board of Education to exercise the powers which they hold in such a way as to secure that this be done. We note with some surprise that this apparently has not been done in the London area.

There remains the problem whether in them also, as in the newer secondary schools, the beginning of modern languages should be postponed to the age of 12. In some, where the majority of pupils come from Elementary Schools, this is probably desirable. In others, where the majority of the pupils in their earlier years attend either the preparatory department of the grammar school or a private school, this does not seem to be necessary. Each one of these schools must solve the difficulty in its own way, and in accordance with the requirements of the majority of its pupils. Generally speaking it will, we believe, be found possible and advantageous that either French or Latin should be begun not later than the age of 10, and the second language after an interval of about two years. Some difficulty will no doubt be caused by an influx of pupils from the Elementary Schools at the age of 12, but practical experience shows that there are many ways in which this can be overcome by a capable headmaster.

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We have then these three types of schools, with important differences in their curriculum, which apply especially to the teaching of languages. It will be noted, however, that it is in the earlier stages of their work that the differences are most marked, and they gradually disappear in the middle and higher forms. All types have the same general aims; their pupils will be prepared for the same examinations and tested on the same standard; they will, we hope, be able to pass on to the same Universities; the three types are in fact three different channels of approach to the same goal. In this way the necessary national unity will be maintained, while account is taken of the varying needs of the pupils, especially in their earlier years.

ALBERT MANSBRIDGE ((v), (vi) and (vii) only).

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Sir O. A. R. Murray, K.C.B., Assistant Secretary.

Royal Naval College, Dartmouth:
Mr. C. E. Ashford, M.V.O., M.A., Head Master.
Rev. E. H. Arkwright, M.V.O., MA., Second Master.

Royal Naval College, Osborne:
Mr. C. Godfrey, M.V.O., M.A., Head Master.
Mr. W. M. Poole, M.A., Head of the Modern Language Department.

Board of Education

Hon. W. N. Bruce, C.B., Principal Assistant Secretary, Secondary Schools Branch.
Mr. E. K. Chambers, C.B., Principal Assistant Secretary, Technological Branch.
Mr. F. H. B. Dale, C.B., Chief Inspector of Elementary Schools.
Dr. E. H. Edwards, H.M.I., Secondary Schools Branch.
Sir Owen Edwards, Chief Welsh Inspector.
Mr. W. C. Fletcher. Chief Inspector of Secondary Schools.
Sir H. F. Heath, K.C.B., Principal Assistant Secretary, Universities Branch.
Mr. A. Kahn, H.M.I., Staff Inspector, Technological Branch.
Mr. R. G. Mayor, Assistant Secretary, Universities Branch.
Mr. F. Pullinger, C.B., Chief Inspector of Technological Schools.
Miss C. F. Shearson, H.M.I., Secondary Schools Branch.
Dr. F. Spencer, H.M.l., Staff Inspector, Secondary Schools Branch.
Mr. F. H. Spencer, H.M.I., Staff Inspector, Technological Branch.

Board of Trade

Mr. T. Worthington.

Foreign Office

Mr. G. H. Fitzmaurice, C.B., C.M.G.
Mr. H. H. Fox, C.M.G.
Mr. J. A. C. Tilley, C.B.
Sir Walter Townley, K.C.M.G.
Mr. V. A. A. H. Wellesley.

Scotch Education Department

Sir John Struthers, K.C.B., Secretary.
Mr. W. W. McKechnie, H.M.I.

War Office

Major V. C. Climo.
Lieut.-Col. E. W. Cox, D.S.O.


Central Welsh Board

Alderman the Rev. D. H. Williams (Chairman).
Mr. E. T. John, M.P.
Mr. W. Edwards, Chief Inspector.
Miss S. Price, Modern Languages Inspector.


Association of Head Mistresses

Miss J. L. Coates.
Miss G. Fanner, M.A.
Miss L. A. Lowe, M.A.

Association of Head Teachers in Central Schools

Mr. J. Litt.
Mr. E. J. Sainsbury.
Mr. R. J. P. Williams.
Mr. R. J. Wood.

Association of Preparatory Schools

Mr. H. Wilkinson (President).
Mr. Frank Ritchie, M.A. (The late) (Secretary).
Mr. S. S. Harris, M.A.
Mr. J. S. Norman, M.A.

Association of Technical Institutions

Major R. Mitchell, C.B.E., B.A., D.Sc.
Professor J. Wertheimer.

British Esperanto Society

Mr. John Pollen, C.I.E., LL.D., etc.

Head Masters' Conference

Rev. Dr. Chilton, D.D.
Mr. W. W. Vaughan, M.A

Historical Association

Mr. C. H. Greene, M.A.
Miss Howard, M.A.
Mr. C. H. K. Marten, M.A.
Miss Reid, M.A., D.Litt.

Incorporated Association of Assistant Masters in Secondary Schools

Mr. A. Blades, B.A.
Mr. A. Hargreaves, Ph.D.
Mr. S. A. Richards, M.A.
Mr. A. A. Somerville, M.A.

Incorporated Association of Assistant Mistresses

Miss C. R. Ash, B.A.
Miss A. L. Hargraves.
Miss C. Loveday.

Incorporated Association of Head Masters

Mr. R. Cary Gilson, M.A.
Mr. H. Nicholson, M.A.

Modern Language Association

Miss L. Althaus.
Miss C. R. Ash, B.A.
Professor A. T. Baker, M.A., Ph.D.
Signorina de Castelvecchio.
Mr. H. L. Hutton, M.A.
Mr. W. G. Lipscomb, M.A.
Mr. O. H. Prior, D.-ès L.
Mr. R. L. G. Ritchie, M.A.
Mr. M. V. Trofimov, B.A.
Mr. E. A. Woolf, B.A.

Royal Society of Literature

Professor M. A.. Gerothwohl, Ph.D., Litt.D.

Scottish Education Reform Committee

Mr. D. MacGillivray.
Miss M. Tweedie.

Société des Professeurs Français en Angleterre

Monsieur S. Barlet.
Monsieur M. Minssen.


Adams, Professor John, M.A., B.Sc., LL.D., Principal of the London Day Training College.
Andrew, Mr. S. O., M.A., Head Master of Whitgift Grammar School, Croydon.
Balfour, Mr. Arthur, Managing Director of the Dannemora Steel Works. Sheffield.
Batchelor, Miss F. M., of Bedford College.
Benn, Mr. E. A., of the London and Brazilian Bank.
Blair, Sir Robert, LL.D., Education Officer of the London County Council.
Booth, Sir Alfred.
Brereton, Mr. Cloudesley, M.A., Modern Language Inspector of the London County Council.
Browne, Professor E. G., F.B.A., etc., Sir Thomas Adams Professor of Arabic at Cambridge.
Bullough, Mr. E., M.A., Fellow of Caius College, Cambridge.

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Burstall, Miss S., Head Mistress of the High School for Girls, Manchester.
Bury, Mr. Oliver, late General Manager of the Great Northern Railway.
Byrne, Mr. L. S. R., M.A., Senior Modern Language Master at Eton College.
Cannan, Mr. Charles, M.A., Secretary to the Delegates of the University Press, Oxford.
Castellejo, Senor Jose de.

Clark's College
Mr. G. E. Clark, Principal.
Mr. Treweek Hughes, Manager.

Davies, Miss Ethel.
Davies, Mr. E. F., of the London County and Westminster Bank.
Eyre, Mr. E. S., of Messrs. Grace Bros.
Ffoulkes, Miss A., Modern Language Mistress in the Girls' County School, Barry.
Findlay, Sir John, K.B.E., Proprietor of "The Scotsman".

Girton College
Miss K. T. Butler.
Miss H. M. Murray, M.A.

Glehn, Mr. L. de, M.A., Chief Modern Language Master at the Perse School, Cambridge.
Haig-Brown, Miss R. M., M.A., Head Mistress of the High School for Girls, Oxford.
Harvey, Mr. W. Gaskell.
Hastings, Miss E., former Head Mistress of the HIgh School for Girls, Wimbledon.
Hedges, Mr. R., Principal of Brixton Commercial Institute.
Hovelaque, Monsieur Emile, Inspecteur Général des Langues Vivantes du Ministère de l'Instruction Publique.
Jackson, the Rt. Hon. F. Huth.
Jones, Mr. Daniel, M.A., Reader in Phonetics in the University of London.
Jones, Mr. H. D. C., of the Hong Kong and Shanghai Bank.
Kittson, Lieut. E. Creagh, M.A., late Modern Language Master of Manchester Grammar School.
Legouis, Monsieur Emile, Professor of English at the Sorbonne.
Lyon, Mr. A., M.A., Head Master of the County School, Hawarden.
Mann, Sir John, K.B.E., Chairman of the Commercial College, Glasgow and West of Scotland.
Marten, Mr. C. H. K., M.A., History Master at Eton College.
Moore, Mr. J. M., M.A., Head Master of Madras College, Fife.

Newnham College
Miss J. P. Strachey, M.A.

Nunn, Professor T. P., M.A., D.Sc., Vice-Principal of the London Day Training College.
Osborne, Mr. C. H. C., B.A., History Master at Gresham's School, Holt.
Palmer, Mr. H. E., Assistant in the Phonetic Department of University College, London.
Parsons, Hon. R. C., F.R.S.
Peacop, Miss, Modern Language Mistress at Wycombe Abbey School.
Phillips, Professor W. Alison, M.A., Lecky Professor of Modern History at Trinity College, Dublin.

Pitman's School
Mr. F. Heelis, Director.

Reeves, Mr. J. H., Principal of William Street Commercial Institute, Hammersmith.
Reiss, Mr. Henry, of Messrs. Reiss Bros., Manchester.
Ripman, Mr. Walter, Staff Inspector to the University of London.
Robson, Miss, of the Edinburgh Training Centre for Teachers.
Ross, Mr. Denison, C.I.E., Ph.D., etc., Director of the London School of Oriental Studies.
Rouse, Mr. W. H. D., Litt.D., M.A., etc., Head Master of the Perse School, Cambridge.
Rowell, Mr. R. S., of the British Manufacturers' Association.
Shaw, Mr. Herbert, Secretary of the Newcastle and Gateshead Incorporated Chamber of Commerce.
Siepmann, Mr. Otto, Head of the Modern Language Department, Clifton College.
Smith, Sir Henry Babington, K.C.B., C.S.I.
Spiers, Professor V. J., M.A., Professor of French at King's College, London.
Steppat, Mr. J., Ph.D., Reader in German to the University of London.
Thomson, Mr. W., late Head Master of Hutcheson's Girls' School, Glasgow.
Whitelaw, Miss A. W., Head Mistress of Wycombe Abbey School.
Wormald, Mr. John, Managing Director of Messrs. Mather and Platt, Ltd.




You may have seen that the Government has appointed a Committee to consider means by which the effective study of modern foreign languages can be furthered in this country. They feel that the results of your experience may be of great value to them, in ascertaining, estimating and locating the actual needs of the nation in this respect, and they venture to hope that you may be willing to give them your assistance. I enclose a list of points on which information is desired, and hope that you may be able to find time to write out your views on any or all of these points, in the form of a memorandum, for our use.

A copy of our reference is enclosed.

Trusting that you may consent to give us the help that we need,

I remain,
    Your obedient Servant,

1. In the course of your experience, direct and indirect, have you found the affairs which you have conducted hampered by the ignorance of British citizens of foreign languages or by their unwillingness or incapacity to acquire them? What specific impediments, if any, have resulted? Have you found it necessary to employ foreigners for lack of qualified British citizens?

2. Have you found the citizens of other countries better equipped in this respect? If so, can you give from your personal knowledge any explanation of this superiority?

3. What means can you suggest to remedy defects, supposing that they exist, e.g., do you think it desirable that more time should be given at Schools in general to the study of modern foreign languages, or that the School study of languages should be more directed to practical utility, or on the other hand do you think that the need is rather for a comparatively small supply of men (or women) each thoroughly trained after their ordinary School education is finished in the language of some one or more countries?

4. In the affairs that you have conducted has the knowledge of modern languages been limited in value and utility, that is useful only for specialised functions, or valuable from top to bottom of your organisation, though not of course in all its operations? What foreign languages have you found most useful?

5. At the age (or severally at the various ages) at which recruits commonly enter the organisation or organisations with which you have been connected, what elements of School (or University) instruction do you consider most important? Have you noticed any improvement in these elements of instruction with the progress of time, or any falling off?

6. In the organisations with which you have been concerned has there been any deliberate attempt to encourage the acquisition of foreign languages after entry? If not, do you think this would have been possible and desirable?

7. The Committee will be glad to hear from you your experience and the opinion you have formed from your experience on any of the points contained in their reference, although they may not be raised by the questions set forth above.

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H.A.= House Allowance

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The University Professors and teachers over whose signatures the following observations are respectfully submitted believe that Modern Languages offer as rich a field of historical and critical investigation as the ancient Classics, and that the wealth of material, the learning and sum of experience stored in their literature are infinitely greater and more important than in the classical languages. They further hold that the study of modern literatures, reflecting as they do the very essence of a people, is the best and readiest means of understanding the psychology of contemporary nations:-

(1) It is indeed no longer disputed that, apart from the practical advantages they offer, Modern Languages can, if properly treated, be made the basis of a liberal education equal to that afforded by the Classics. But the signatories feel bound to point out that in few British Universities have Modern Languages been placed on an equal footing with other subjects.*

(2) In Scotland there are no Chairs in any of the modern foreign languages; in neither Oxford nor Cambridge is there a chair of French language or Literature, though both Oxford and Cambridge are provided with a Chair of German and Oxford with a Chair of Romance Languages. Russian, as is well known, has been till recently almost completely neglected, Italian has fared very little better, and Spanish has made its way into only a few of our Universities. In English University Colleges two modern languages, though unrelated, are still sometimes taught by the same man or are under the same head. Generally the professors of Modern Languages in our Universities are on the lowest level of salaries paid and are provided with the worst equipped staffs and the meanest apparatus.

(3) We recognise that this state of things is due in great measure to the view, held for too long, that the duty of a modern language department was only that of imparting some superficial and general knowledge of the language; such an aim was rightly considered to be on a lower plane than those of other departments.

(4) This state of things is especially regrettable in our newer Universities, in which the systematic study of languages should, both on educational and humanistic grounds, occupy as important a place as the study of the Classics in the older Universities.

(5) The great improvement which, in spite of many obstacles, has taken place in our Universities in the teaching of modern languages within the last thirty years and the growing consciousness of their importance leads us to believe that a great advance is not impossible provided that certain drastic reforms are introduced, of which the most pressing and obvious is the provision of an adequate staff for each language taught.

(6) We hold that the staff of teachers in each modern language department should be so increased as to provide instruction, not merely in the languages and literatures they individually represent, but in the history in broad outline, the customs and institutions and the social conditions of the foreign peoples concerned.

(7) This broader conception of the study of modern languages would be more worthy of University traditions than the present standard; it would not only make it possible to meet the requirements of intending teachers of modern languages, but would also enable our Universities to prepare adequately students destined for commerce, journalism and the public services.

(8) A natural corollary would be that a student who intended to pursue a foreign language to a degree with Honours should spend some of his terms in the

*This inequality is particularly felt in Scotland. There, as in some other Universities, Modern Languages are not represented on the Academic governing body, and it also debars many men from taking these subjects in an Honours School.

foreign country. It follows also that a great advance would have to be effected in the position and teaching of modern languages in our secondary schools (and also in the status of the teachers), in order to prepare a sufficient supply of pupils fit to profit by a University course such as we have indicated.

(9) In considering the ideals of modern language departments a possible and useful classification would be the following:- (a) Curriculum, (b) Staff, (c) Equipment, (d) Mutual recognition of University Courses, (e) Provision of Travelling Scholarships, (f) Leave of Absence and Exchange of Professors.

(10)-(a) Curriculum*

This would fall into the following sections:-

(i) Language, including the elements of phonetics and also practical phonetics of the particular language studied.
(ii) Literature.
(iii) History and Institutions (some add Geography).
(iv) Special treatment of the language in a Faculty of Commerce.
(11)-(b) Staff

Corresponding to this Curriculum the staff of a modern language department would be constituted as follows:-

(i) A Professor and Director of the Department, who would be a specialist in language or literature as the case might be.
(ii) A second Professor or Assistant Professor, who, if the Head of the Department were a specialist in language, would be a specialist in literature and vice versâ.
(iii) A Lecturer in History and Institutions - some add Geography. (Such Lecturer might be attached to the Department of Modern History.)
(iv) Such Assistant Lecturers as the numbers of students would justify. (Some of these might be temporary foreign assistants.)
(v) A special Lecturer for the Faculty of Commerce who might possibly undertake the teaching, for commercial purposes, of more than one foreign language.
(vi) Some signatories add:- A Lecturer in linguistic pedagogy. (Such Lecturer might be attached to the Department of Education or to a Department of Phonetics.)
(12) That this is no extravagant claim could be easily shown by comparison with foreign and American Universities. At Harvard for example (to mention French only) there are, besides the Professor and Head of the Department, three Assistant Professors of French and at least three other Assistants; besides this there are a number of teachers in Romance Philology.

(13) The signatories are conscious, however, that a staff of these dimensions could at first be realised in each University only for those languages which have already a firm footing and the necessary foundation for the complete edifice. For that reason they would recommend the consideration of the principle of co-operation between the various groups of Universities, in the initial stages of development at all events, in the case of those languages which have so far found little or no recognition in our Universities. Thus, for example, the assistant staff of an Italian department might well be shared between the Universities of Manchester and Liverpool or between those of Leeds and Sheffield.

(14) Of all the needs the most urgent in our opinion is the immediate creation of Chairs of French in all British Universities in which they do not already exist.

(15)-(c) Equipment

If every University contained an adequate library the equipment of modern language departments would be simplified, but in few Universities is there even a complete set of the necessary scientific journals.

Oxford, owing to the library of the Taylorian Institution which contains some 50,000 volumes and that institution's income of 500, would seem to be fairly

*This might better be entitled "Divisions of the Subject".

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well supplied. Cambridge spends about 1,000 per annum on "foreign books" and about the same sum on "foreign periodicals", but doubtless a large proportion of this amount is absorbed by books published abroad on subjects other than modern languages and literatures. These Universities have further the prerogative of claiming one copy of every book under the provisions of the Copyright Act, but this privilege is of little value in this matter since a few pounds would purchase all books published in Great Britain (apart from mere school books) dealing with foreign languages and literatures. Probably in no other University does the expenditure exceed 200, and few reach even a half of that amount.

(16) The adequate departmentalisation of libraries will probably render unnecessary the expense of "Students' Libraries" such as are growing up in Cambridge and elsewhere in places where the mass of books is not easily accessible to the student.

(17) A good deal, however, may be said in favour or departmental libraries, so arranged as to increase a student's bibliographical knowledge and where two or three copies of the most used books may be found. By this duplication one or two copies are available for borrowing while the other will remain permanently for purposes of reference.

(18) The needs of the Pass Degree Student can be met without much expense and most Universities have doubtless already satisfied this demand, but the needs of the staff are in every British University very far from being supplied. Some system of co-operation between the Universities in the way of loan of rare books and manuscripts, especially for advanced students and staff, might properly be instituted. Many British professors have had reason to be deeply grateful to the Ministère de l'Instruction publique for its good offices in bringing works from provincial libraries to Paris for them to consult there.

(19) The Professors and teachers must be provided in their lecture rooms with large maps, photographs, lantern slides and gramophone records, reproductions of MSS., illustrated histories of literature, etc., etc.

(20) It is desirable, too, that Universities should equip a small laboratory of experimental phonetics which would be common to all language departments. This need not attempt to copy the scale of the Laboratoire de phonétique expérimentale at the Collège de France or those of Hamburg or of some American Universities, but a room might be set aside and equipped for the demonstration of the main differences in the bases of the native and foreign tongues. The worth of such a department may be judged from that at University College, London - the only one of its kind in Great Britain.

(21)-(d) Mutual Recognition

Since lectures are of value in proportion as the teacher is dealing with the results of his own personal investigation, the mutual recognition of University courses should be admitted as far as Honours students are concerned. This system is at present rendered difficult in practice by the rigid adherence to the theory of residence, or by the fact that so large a proportion of the students at the newer Universities are living in their own homes and cannot afford to migrate. We see no harm, however, in the admission of the principle. The Universities of Manchester, Leeds and Sheffield already recognise approved courses of study at the University of Caen as equivalent to courses in those Universities and this movement may well be extended to include a scheme of inter-recognition between British Universities. One reservation would doubtless be that a student should spend the last session at least at that University in which he intends to graduate.

(22)-(e) Provision of Travelling Scholarships and Funds for Research

Every student of foreign languages should consider it a part of his training to spend practically the whole of each Long Vacation abroad. Little good would result from his attending one of the Holiday Courses except perhaps that of the Alliance française at Paris (or that in Geneva) which alone provides a teaching staff big enough to offer a wide course of study. The ordinary student who has not yet taken a degree will find it necessary to devote his time to the learning of the modern language, the life and institutions of the foreign people, its art as expressed in its galleries, services, theatres, festivals, etc. For the research and post-graduate student his professor will probably have marked out for him a special subject of study which will make it necessary for him to spend a considerable part of his time in some particular library or in the study of some linguistic or literary problem on the spot. Funds for this are almost entirely lacking.

(23)-(f) Leave of Absence and Exchange of Professors

We would recommend that some scheme of leave of absence be drawn up possibly following the example of the "Sabbatic Year" of American Universities. Library facilities here will always be inadequate, e.g., for French in comparison with the Bibliothèque Nationale and it is essential for most research that a prolonged stay should be made in a foreign capital. A British professor generally finds that he is unable to get to Paris for example till August, and by that time all his French colleagues with whom it would be of the very greatest value to discuss lines of research have already left for the country.

There have been cases of exchanges between French and British professors, but this is rendered very difficult owing to the fact that a British professor gives three times as many classes as his French confrère. A system of exchange would in a measure take the place of a "Sabbatic Year."

We are, Gentlemen,
    Your obedient Servants,
ALFRED T. BAKER, M.A.., Ph.D., Professor of French Language and Literature, University of Sheffield.
PAUL BARBIER, Senior, Professor of French Language and Literature, University of Wales (Cardiff).
PAUL BARBIER, Junior, M.A., Professor of French Language and Literature and Romance Philology, University of Leeds.
H. E. BERTHON, M.V.O., M.A., Taylorian Lecturer in French, University of Oxford.
G. A. BIRKETT, M.A., Vickers Lecturer in Russian, University of Sheffield.
L. M. BRANDIN, L. ès L., Ph.D., Fielden Professor of French and Romance Philology, University of London.
E. G. W. BRAUNHOLTZ, M.A., Ph.D., University Reader in Romance, University of Cambridge.
(With reservation as to the recognition of Courses of other British Universities, §21; and departmental libraries, §16.)
KARL BREUL, Litt.D., Ph.D., Schröder Professor of German, University of Cambridge.
(With reservation as to departmental libraries, §16.)
H. G. FIEDLER, M.A., Ph.D., Taylorian Professor of German, University of Oxford.
O. H. FYNES-CLINTON, M.A., Professor of French, University of Wales (Bangor).
CHARLES GOUGH, Ph.D., Lecturer in charge of the Department of German, University of Leeds.
(With reservation as to the teaching of early German history.)
DORIS GUNNELL, M.A.., Docteur de l'Université, Lecturer in Charge of the Department of French, University of Leeds.
CHAS. F. HARDENER., M.A., Professor of Modern Languages, University of Durham.
DANIEL JONES, M.A., Lecturer in Phonetics, University of London.
J. D. JONES, Ph.D., Lecturer in charge of the department of German, University of Sheffield.
L. E. KASTNER, M.A., Professor of French Language and Literature, University of Manchester.
JOHN ORR, M.A., B.Litt., L. ès L. Professor of French, University of London (East London College).
R. L. G. RITCHIE, M.A., Docteur de l'Université, Lecturer in French, University of Edinburgh.

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J. G. ROBERTSON, M.A., Ph.D., Fielden Professor of German, University of London.
GUSTAVE RUDLER, D. ès L. Professor of French Literature, University of London.
T. B. RUDMOSE-BROWN, M.A., Docteur de I'Université, Professor of Romance Languages, University of Dublin (T.C.D.).
A. SALMON, Professor of French, University College, Reading.
D. L. SAVORY, M.A., Professor of French and Romance Philology, University of Belfast.
V. SPIERS, M.A., Professor of French, University of London (King's College).
H. F. STEWART, D.D., Dean and Fellow of St. John's College, Cambridge, Lecturer in French, University of Cambridge.
(with reservation as to recognition of Courses of other British Universities and departmental libraries §21 and §16.)
PAUL STUDER, M.A., D.Litt., Taylorian Professor of Romance Languages, University of Oxford.
A. L. TERRACHER, D. ès L., Professor of French Language and Literature, University of Liverpool.
ARTHUR TILLEY, M.A., Fellow of King's College, Cambridge, Lecturer in French Literature, University of Cambridge.
(with reservation as to recognition of Courses of other British Universities and departmental libraries, §21 and §16.)
GILBERT WATERHOUSE, M.A., Professor of German, University of Dublin (T.C.D.).
ERNEST WEEKLEY, M.A., Professor of French, University College, Nottingham.
R. A. WILLIAMS, Ph.D., Professor of German and Teutonic Philology, University of Belfast.
(with reservation in regard to foreign languages being a basis of a liberal education, §1.)