Some people decide to work abroad, some decide to study abroad, some just want to learn a foreign language, or just need to brush up on their current skills. There are any number of reasons that people what to learn a second language. When it comes to choosing a school, the choices can be overwhelming. Here a few things to consider before you select a Language School.
School Reputation: There's no better way to judge a school than by its past successes. Any reputable school will be able to refer you to previous students that were happy with their service. If a school can't supply a list of testimonials, you have to ask yourself, why not? Class size: Class size is definitely one of the most important considerations in choosing a language school. As with any type of education, people tend to learn quicker in small groups.
Look for a school that will specify a maximum class size. Individual attention quickly disappears in classes of more than 10 - 12 students. One on One Instruction: Whilst one on one tuition can work very well for intense periods of revision or to work on a specific area of weakness.
In a general learning situation, especially with beginners, students tend to learn quicker when mixed with students on roughly the same level. Small Group Classes: In small groups of say, six to eight students, each student gets the benefit of learning from each others triumphs and failures. Plus the chances of getting individual attention when it may be required are much improved.
Smaller groups tend to bond better, and assist each other to a much higher degree than happens in larger groups. As in any other learning situation, repetition and reinforcement are the tried and tested methods that bring the fastest results. In small groups each student benefits from the opportunity to interact with others in the group more regularly than they would have the opportunity to in a larger group. Private Tuition Private tuition can be advantageous where a student has a particular problem such as with syntax, grammar or structure, that would benefit from some personal one on one attention.
Another instance where private classes would help are when an advanced student needs some intensive coaching in a particular area, eg. in relation to the specific needs of a particular profession. Standard versus Intensive Classes Many schools offer both Standard and Intensive courses. A Standard Class will typically run for 4 hours per day, and an Intensive Class for up to 6 hours. Both classes will cover the same syllabus, with the only difference being the extended time available for coaching. The Standard class is best suited to the requirements of most students, as it provides a good blend of class time and revision time.
This information should serve as a list of basic things for you to think about when you are looking to choose the language school that will best suit your individual needs. The single smartest thing you can do before making your final decision is to ask lots of questions, particularly about testimonials from people that speak your native language.
David Neehly writes on all aspects of the Language School industry on his website, where you'll find many more interesting articles. Don't forget to subscribe to his FREE newsletter, for expert advice, and the latest news on Language Schools.