Since November 2014, LinkedIn has enabled users to add external qualifications from websites such as EF, Microsoft and Coursera to their online profiles, but this is the first time the website will actively prompt users to take a language qualification.
“We have seen a spike in traffic from LinkedIn, so we trust that LinkedIn members see the value of EFSET and are responding to the prompt”
Over the coming months, users who live outside of an English-speaking country who add English language as a ‘skill’ to their profile, will receive an email notification from LinkedIn prompting them to take the EFSET and add their score using the ‘Add to Profile’ function.
LinkedIn began emailing users about the test last week, which according to Minh Tran, EF’s director of research and academic partnerships, has already led to a “record number” of test takers visiting EF’s website and adding their EFSET scores to their profile.
“We have seen a spike in our EFSET traffic from LinkedIn, so we trust that LinkedIn members see the value of EFSET and are responding to the prompt from LinkedIn and coming to our site,” he said.
The company is confident the prompt will boost the number test takers globally.
“What the EFSET does and I think what’s appealing about it is democratising English assessment, and it’s making it openly available at no cost to anyone,” he continued.
“So anyone can sign up for LinkedIn for free and create a professional profile and everyone can take the EFSET for free, so you can do both of those things at no cost to you at any time in your learning journey, when you feel like you’re ready to showcase your English skills in a professional setting and publicly.”
The EFSET was launched last autumn as a free alternative to established English language tests such as the IELTS and the TOEFL and is pegged to the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages.
“In the age of social networks, especially professional social networks, your reputation is at stake if you lie”
Unlike other tests, users do not have to pay for it and can take it online from home.
As such, there will be no way of verifying if the test as shown on a test taker’s LinkedIn profiles was taken fairly.
However, this is also the case for any claim made on the networking site Tran contended, adding that he thinks people’s desire to protect their professional reputation may discourage cheating.
“In the age of social networks, especially professional social networks, your reputation is at stake if you lie,” he commented.
“If you’re caught by an employer or a school lying on a LinkedIn profile, or if your colleagues see your profile and clearly you’ve misrepresented yourself, then people might not trust you or find you as reputable.”