As the world becomes much “smaller” and more “connected” by the advancement of information technology, the number of language employed in international communication becomes less diverse. This phenomenon is observable through the rise of English in the last 50 years. Today, English has garnered an unofficial title as the world’s lingua franca.
In the business world, many multi-national corporations utilize English as their default language. This means that those who wish to build careers in one of those corporations should expect their future employers to assess their English proficiency. Furthermore, due to the majority of the world’s information, written or recorded, is available in English, the number of national corporations and companies that require their employees and prospective employees to be able to communicate in English fluently is overwhelming.
One of English tests that one can take to prove their English fluency to their future employers is TOEIC (Test of English for International Communication). While there are other standardized tests used for evaluating one’s English like TOEFL or IELTS, TOEIC has become very popular in the business world due to its focus on assessing one’s ability in reading common business texts in English and understanding types of conversation frequently happen in the workplace settings.
This prompted community service team from English Department of Dharma Andalas University to organize a TOEIC workshop for students of SMTI Padang (a vocational high school specialized in industrial technology). This workshop was quite important to the students due to the fact that they were prepared for the workplace. It meant that they were given a chance to have a better understanding on TOEIC, specifically, and English in general, hence increasing their chance on securing a job in their fields after graduating from the school. The workshop was held on February 22nd. It started at 08:00 and ended at 12:00. It was designed to introduce TOEIC and provide strategies for answering questions found in TOEIC to the students. Aside from that, the team also provided the attendees with expandable materials that they can use personally on their own time to increase their English proficiency. The workshop was led by Rahma Yanti, S.S., MEIL and supported by five UNIDHA’s English Department lecturers (Novalinda, S.S., M.Hum., Yalmiadi, S.S., M.Pd., Rabbi Antaridha, S.S., M.A., Irsyad Shabri, S.Hum., M.Hum., and Thiska Septa Maiza, S.Hum., M.A.). Four students of UNIDHA’s English Department were also involved. They were Tesya Armelia, Muhammad Syukri Izka, Cika Nurviatri, and Jihan Pratama Oka Putri.