Failure at football but Portuguese language scores big

Failure at football but Portuguese language scores big

Portugal may have crashed out of Euro 2008 but the failed-football team’s language is going from strength to strength. OCR, a leading UK awarding body, has launched its revised Portuguese GCSE specification to reflect the rise in popularity of the Portuguese language in the UK.

Since its introduction six years ago, the number of pupils taking GCSE Portuguese has increased year on year, jumping by 51% last year. This summer saw more than 1,700 candidates take the exam, its highest ever figure. As well as being important to native speakers living in the UK, the GCSE will benefit pupils who are keen to enhance their CV with something that stands out.

OCR has recognised the change in modern Britain by offering Portuguese and a range of community language qualifications.

Portuguese is one of 43 revised GCSEs being introduced for first teaching in September 2009*. The course has been adapted to include broader topics that allow students to use language in a way that is relevant and meaningful to them.

Parool Patel, Head of OCR GCSE Project, said: “OCR’s GCSE in Portuguese not only reflects the needs of today’s multi-cultural Britain, but also the rise in the need to differentiate yourself in the job market. Education has always been a very important contributing factor to social ascension and successful integration into the UK. OCR recognises this through offering formal qualifications in languages such as Turkish, Persian and Portuguese.

“The Portuguese population in the UK is growing as is the popularity of the language. So while the Portuguese football team may not be celebrating, the fans of Portuguese language definitely are! OCR offers community language subjects such as Turkish, Dutch, Portuguese and Persian to promote community cohesion and also to give pupils a really marketable and useful skill to make their CV stand out from the crowd.”

The specification was redeveloped following extensive consultation with teachers to ensure the support materials and schemes are exactly what pupils need. Portuguese associations and societies, professional member groups, and other experts have also been consulted to ensure accuracy.

OCR is committed to providing the very best and up to date topics that have resonance and relevance in today’s changing society.

OCR has launched as an information portal and regularly updated guide for teachers and those making specification decisions for their school or college. User-friendly and packed with knowledge, the site offers practical support for those needing immediate access to the facts, as well as access to a new poster collection range designed to inspire and enthuse pupils across all 43 subjects – available free at

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