§ Mr. Gurden
asked the Minister of Education what steps he is taking to encourage further education colleges to provide short intensive courses in foreign languages for business firms, with the emphasis on oral proficiency.
§ Sir E. Boyle
A number of colleges already provide intensive language courses of this kind and many have installed, or plan to install, language laboratories. I am sending a circular to local education authorities and colleges today asking them to extend the provision of such courses, and in particular to put on special courses for small numbers of students at times and in places convenient to business firms where a demand exists for such a service. The circular contains detailed information about the facilities available for instruction in foreign languages other than the four main Western European languages and Russian, for which facilities are available on a wide scale. It also asks the colleges to continue and extend the provision of short courses in various aspects of exporting. The Federation of British Industries, which has been consulted in the preparation of the circular, believes that the informa-170W tion it contains will be helpful to business firms and proposes to draw attention to it at an early date in an appropriate publication of its own.