UK College to Introduce Hinglish as a Course

Hinglish will be taught as a course by Portsmouth College in the United Kingdom in the next academic year from September.


Hinglish — a fusion of Hindi and English language commonly used across media and everyday conversation in India — will be taught as a course by Portsmouth College in the United Kingdom, the Hindustan Times reported. The institute is said to be the first one to introduce a course focused on it.

Hinglish is increasingly being preferred as the mode of communication by India’s booming business community. The course is designed for students looking for international opportunities in the world’s rapidly growing seventh largest economy, the Telegraph reported. An example of a Hinglish sentence would be: “I have hazaar things on my mind right now.” Hazaar is a word that denotes thousand.

James Watters, the head of curriculum at the college, was quoted as saying: “We were quite surprised to receive the interest and case load when we launched the pilot project. Its feedback means that we will offer a longer duration course to all students in the next academic year from September.”

According to Watters, the idea is to offer a course that is included in the college’s modern business language and culture program to raise awareness of Hinglish and how it is used in society and business. “The course’s focus was on culture and reference to headlines and text in adverts, films and newspapers. Students learned some Hindi and practiced speaking during lesson time individually, in pairs and as a group,” he said.

The course, which is going to be offered to high achieving A level students, was introduced in preparation for those who may take up jobs in India and Indian companies based in the United Kingdom. The course will be taught by an Indian-origin teacher, Viraj Shah.

“It was really interesting to learn about a new culture and how businesses operate, particularly in the technology industry. I would like to visit India, particularly Mumbai. I have never seen a Bollywood film but some were suggested in the course,” student Evelyn Murray told the Hindustan Times.

Hinglish involves seamless merging of Hindi and English. This is different from the “Indian English” genre of writing, which is the distinct Indian way in which English is used in literature, news discourse and everyday interaction.

The growth of Hinglish has been such that it has led to linguists such as David Crystal suggesting that it may outnumber the number of English-speaking people across the globe as India’s influence increases globally.

Hinglish is not the only fusion language that has gained prominence. West African Pidgin English is spoken by millions in countries such as Nigeria, Ghana, Equatorial Guinea and Cameroon. While this is not an official language in any country, its popularity is such that BBC launched a Pidgin news service in August last year.

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