Study abroad. English language courses and other language courses, educational tours, higher education abroad.
Educational tours abroad – first of all, of course, language tours, have recently noticeably increased in volume. Their high efficiency contributes a lot to this growth in popularity: 100% immersion in Wednesday in a couple of weeks removes the notorious “language barrier”, over which Russian teachers of foreign languages sometimes struggle for years. See Collegetoppicks.com for information about Federal Polytechnic School of Zurich.
Today, Russian tour operators offer educational tours to almost 40 countries. For adults, individual and sometimes group tours are organized, children and adolescents under 17 years old are most often offered vacation programs, including daily morning language classes and sports and entertainment activities in the afternoon and evening. Group educational programs for children, of course, are cheaper than personal trips, but they impose a number of restrictions: students from the same group must be approximately the same age, and uniform training periods are rigidly set for the entire group.
For the little ones
Some schools accept children from the age of five to language programs, but only with their parents. This option can be selected in England or Malta. For children 7-12 years old there are children’s international camps, to which the child can be sent both individually and as part of a group for 2-4 weeks. And for schoolchildren from 13 years old – the widest choice of programs in all countries. By the way, in many countries it is possible to organize accommodation and education of parents with children directly in the families of teachers.
But still: if a child needs to improve his pronunciation or in serious preparation for entering an English school or university, it is the British schools that will provide him with the appropriate program.
In the UK, Canada and the US, Language Plus Sports programs are very popular. For example, studying at the David Beckham Football Academy in London (UK) and Los Angeles (USA). Eight- and fifteen-day programs are designed for girls and boys aged 11-16. Their training part was developed by the famous football player David Beckham and the famous children’s coach Eric Harrison, the former coach of the youth team of the Manchester United football club. It includes all aspects of the game: passing technique, ball interception, dribbling, heading, man marking, tactics and teamwork. There are specialized training programs for goalkeepers, defenders, midfielders and attackers. There are also theoretical classes on body physiology, health, fitness and proper nutrition. Classes at the academy can be limited to only football (1 week), or they can be expanded by studying English (1 week football + 1 week English) and excursions.
Seventeen and over
Young people over 17 and adults have much more freedom in terms of choosing educational programs. Firstly, a student of an “adult” school can choose between standard language classes or a special course. Secondly, he himself decides what to do in the afternoon. For those who strive for the most intense communication with native speakers, it is better to live in a family – local residents who have signed a contract with the school accept foreign students at home. For those who primarily value communication with peers, a residence is more suitable. Here it should be noted that the residence is not just a type of residence, but rather a lifestyle in which the student is not left alone for a minute. Around – peers from other countries, with whom he sits together in class, goes on excursions, swims in the pool and has fun at the disco. And you don’t need to drop everything at the most interesting moment and go to dinner “with the family”. Unfortunately, not all good adult schools have good residences.
Cambridge, Boston, London and Munich are suitable for adult business people with serious requirements both for the intensity and quality of training, and for the service and environment. Usually “aged students” prefer short but very intensive courses, preferably one-on-one with a teacher.
If we talk about the cost of programs in different countries, then all “educational” areas can be divided (of course, very conditionally) into three groups – expensive, affordable and economical. The first group includes Great Britain, Canada and Switzerland. In addition to the general standard of living in the country, the high price of their programs is due to accommodation in expensive boarding schools or universities, opportunities to play sports with professional coaches, an extensive excursion program and, last but not least, the prestige of educational institutions. The second group includes France, Italy, the USA, Australia and New Zealand (the last three – subject to long-term study). And finally, “economical” countries: Germany, Ireland, Spain and Malta. The latter is a clear leader among inexpensive programs.
Types of language courses for learning English
Standard course: 15-20 lessons per week, conducted at various levels. The goal is to give students the grammatical structures of the English language, sufficient vocabulary and, most importantly, to ensure the practical use of the knowledge gained in everyday everyday situations.
Intensive course: for people with different levels of training, from elementary to advanced. Each level has its own program. It is designed for serious applicants who want to make real progress in learning the language and are ready to make every effort to do so. The usual intensity of classes is 25-30 lessons per week, duration – from two weeks. In the classroom, there is an improvement in knowledge of grammar and an expansion of the vocabulary of both written and spoken speech, an active formulation of the correct pronunciation. Special lessons and exercises are introduced to develop the ability to use the language, to understand oral speech, as well as speaking, reading and writing.
Super-intensive course: for students of intermediate and advanced levels of language proficiency. This is a deep overview course for those who want to achieve the best results in the shortest possible time. As a rule, classes are held individually or in mini-groups (3-6 people) with an intensity of 40 lessons per week. The course lasts 2-4 weeks.
If we talk about the cost of programs in different countries, then all “educational” areas can be divided (of course, very conditionally) into three groups – expensive, affordable and economical.
Specialized courses are designed for different categories of professional workers who, by the nature of their activities, require a deep knowledge of the English language. The cost of such courses is higher than general English courses, but the approach to learning is more individual, and the study programs are more serious and intense. The number of students in a group is up to 6 people, language classes are 15-40 hours a week.
A business English course is not only about replenishing business vocabulary, developing spoken and written English with an emphasis on business topics. These are practical classes in which students master the skills of speaking in front of an audience, learn how to conduct business meetings and negotiations by phone, presentation strategies, master special vocabulary. To start studying in such courses, the level of English must be above average. The age of students is usually from 21 years old, but there are schools that accept students from 18 years old.
Holiday courses for children, teenagers and students of different levels of training. Each language school has several age groups, which allows children to study among their peers, feeling comfortable both in the classroom and during leisure time. The course is designed for those students who want to combine serious language learning with excursions, cultural and entertainment programs. Duration – at least two weeks, teaching load, as a rule – 15-20 hours per week.
Family courses allow you to relax with the whole family during your vacation, combining relaxation with learning English. Children attend language classes in youth groups, and their parents in groups for adults (or generally just relax). Entertainment programs for children and adults are organized separately. Duration – from two weeks, intensity of classes – from 15 to 25 hours a week.
Exams and certificates
Examinations and tests of many schools and colleges of English are recognized by universities. But besides such “final” language school exams, there are also official or equivalent ones. The results of official exams are recognized by organizations around the world. For admission to a college or university, for employment in foreign companies, it is often required to provide the results of one of them. These exams include, in particular:
- TOEFL (Test of English as a Foreign Language) is an exam for non-English speaking foreigners that determines the level of language proficiency. TOEFL tests are developed and conducted by the American organization ETS (Educational Testing Service).
- IELTS (International English Language Testing System) is an international English language testing system, the English analogue of TOEFL.
- KET (Key English test) – a key test of English, “Cambridge exam of the first level.”
- CAE (Cambridge in Advanced English) is an advanced Cambridge certificate, or “Cambridge Level 4 Exam”.
- CPE (Cambridge of Proficiency in English) – Cambridge Certificate of Proficiency in English, or “Cambridge Level 5 Exam”.