Back to oDesk.com » Love the way you work.

Welcome to the oDesk Community! Connect here with fellow clients, contractors, and oDesk staff. Please review our Usage Policy.

Test written by programmers not User.

Even though I have done well with most test, they were obviously not written by people using the software. Most of the questions are regarding programming functions. Fortunately I have had enough study in that area to be able to answer many of them. But the Client still doesn't know if I can use the software to do his day to day work since those types of questions are not asked on the test. The only test I did poorly in was the ENGLISH test. I am a native American and made very high marks in English in school and in business. However, since the test were made by someone outside the US and England, it is obvious they do not know how to use business or every day language skills in English. Testing in Odesk shows nothing. That is why the usual clients are continually asking for people the KNOW the English language since when they hire people who tested, they still can't do business English. Now, a previous Executive Secretary who knows English very very well, can't pass the test. Maybe that is why there are very few listed that have passed.

Miriam Becker

Vote Result

+---------
Score: 1.0, Votes: 3
Spy the irony: "it is obvious

Spy the irony: "it is obvious they do not know how to use business or every day language skills in English."

Language skills tests

Miriam Becker wrote:
That is why the usual clients are continually asking for people the KNOW the English language since when they hire people who tested.

Right. It's the test's fault, obviously....... Wink

I don't seem to have had too much trouble with the English language tests. What I personally find strange is just how different the level of difficulty is in different languages.... I am a native German speaker with a high level of German language skills (being " a native speaker" does not automatically mean one can use the the language to a high level) and I found all the German tests quite hard. I hardly have any real grasp of Italian, yet achieved the exact same score in the Italian translation test which seemed to be ridiculously easy. Trust me, if I can get most of them right it has GOT to be virtually idiot proof.

That is where the percentile score comes into it. Getting 4.6 out of 5 in the German test put me in the top 10 percent. Getting exactly the same "score" in the Italian translation test put me (quite rightly) in the below average category where my Italian language skills currently belong.
(I only did the Italian test for fun, I obviously do not intend to offer my services as an Italian translator now, any time soon, or probably ever!)

I am constantly shocked at

I am constantly shocked at the level of first language English speakers in the UK and US. In South Africa you simply don't run into first language English speakers with such a poor command of the language. It really should be the other way around. It baffles me. The only time 'there they're their' problems emerge on my Facebook page is when they come from UK and US residents who grew up speaking English.

Exactly.

Kirsten Holmes wrote:
I am constantly shocked at the level of first language English speakers in the UK and US. In South Africa you simply don't run into first language English speakers with such a poor command of the language. It really should be the other way around. It baffles me. The only time 'there they're their' problems emerge on my Facebook page is when they come from UK and US residents who grew up speaking English.

I have read stuff written by Pakistani and Filipino writers that can far surpass anything written by American writers when it comes to spelling, punctuation, and syntax. I tend to think that the reason lies somewhere between a lack of quality education over here and an inherent laziness with the language by some "writters."

Completely agree

Cate B. wrote:
I have read stuff written by Pakistani and Filipino writers that can far surpass anything written by American writers when it comes to spelling, punctuation, and syntax. I tend to think that the reason lies somewhere between a lack of quality education over here and an inherent laziness with the language by some "writters."

Completely agree... There was even a time even in our public schools English was a priority subject from Elementary thru High school and reinforce during college years.
But now a days its a bit lacking. To have a good foundation in english you have to invest in putting your kids to Exclusive or well known schools and colleges... Sad really.

I would imagine that English

I would imagine that English skills would be better in countries where people are taught more than one language when young. The problem with countries that use few languages is that children don't build the neural pathways needed to become truly multilingual later in life. In South Africa our education standards are low but we are taught more than one language growing up. I imagine the Philippines might be the same. In the UK education standards are high but most families speak only English among themselves, so perhaps language abilities suffer for that reason.

Studies have shown that the

Studies have shown that the best way teaching 2nd or even a 3rd language is starting them young. Now a days, in most schools they are taught just enough to learn to read, speak and understand English. If you want your kids to really proficient, you need to invest by putting them in one of the more exclusive schools from elementary to high school. English for a fact is the 2nd language of the Filipinos, go anywhere around the country even in the remotes of barrios and for sure you won't have any problem in communicating. Its the proficiency that is a bit down compared 15, 20 years ago.

this is true

Reynaldo M. wrote:
Studies have shown that the best way teaching 2nd or even a 3rd language is starting them young.

This is true. It's easiest for children to learn a language and the earlier the better. This seems to apply to the rest of your life as well. I have seen the difference between how easily 15 and 18 year olds learn a new language, and 20 and 25 year olds or 30 and 40 year olds, etc. The older you get, the harder it is. Doesn't mean you can't, just means you have to work harder. I think it is also easier to learn new languages later if you learned at least two as a child.

Children in the UK don't usually get foreign language teaching until secondary school and then the teaching is often utterly appalling. Unsurprisingly, most Brits speak only one language.

[quote=Reynaldo M.]Its the proficiency

Reynaldo M. wrote:
Its the proficiency that is a bit down compared 15, 20 years ago.

This may be true Reynaldo and I cannot comment on the intricacies of grammar and the oxford comma. However, language usage, choice of words, the way comments are expressed etc does appear upside -- my impression anyway from reading the forums.

Was just trying to point out

Was just trying to point out the difference 15-20 years ago, I could conservatively say 50-55% high school graduates from public schools are above average in terms of English grammar, vocabulary, and comprehension both written and verbal.

Sure, yes

Sure, yes, I can appreciate what you are conveying here.

I'm ain't no native English speaker...

... so

Quote:
are continually asking for people the KNOW the English language

drives me a bit... thinking.