Language Schools Abroad: Choosing The Right One

With the ever-increasing importance of having multi-lingual abilities, more and more students are seeking new and more effective ways to learn foreign languages – whether it’s attending a class at the local community college, buying foreign language tapes, or attending language schools abroad.

While the first two options can be equally effective, language schools abroad offer students a unique opportunity: to immerse themselves both in the language and in the culture of their host country. In fact, if you’re planning to study abroad but don’t have the adequate language skills, you may find that a language school abroad could be the best way to learn and hone your skills.

One of the biggest benefits of language schools abroad is they offer complete immersion courses, also referred to as intensive courses. These intensive courses generally run anywhere from a week to a full year, depending on your needs and your budget. Intensive courses allow you to learn the language quickly but in a very intense setting.

You must be mentally prepared for an intense course, but the good news is you can walk into an intensive language (One hit) course knowing not an ounce of the foreign language, and you’ll leave feeling confident in your abilities to speak at least the basics.

Your first step, if your considering learning a foreign language at one of these languages schools abroad, is to determine what language you want to study, where you want to study abroad, and how long you want to study abroad.

After you decide which language you want to study and where you want to study abroad, you must decide how long you want to be at the language school abroad, taking your budget into consideration. Do you want to spend a week in Paris? A month in Madrid? Two months in Japan? You have plenty of options for language schools abroad, so take time to carefully consider your options.

Don’t choose the first language school abroad that looks good to you; rather, give yourself sufficient time to research each school thoroughly.

You’ll want to consider several factors when choosing a language school (7 hits) abroad:

Testing. Most language (2 hits) schools abroad require you to take some sort of test – whether written or oral – to assess your level of fluency. Such a test is essential because you don’t want to find yourself in a class that is too slow for you. Alternately, you don’t want to end up in a class too advanced for your skills.

Syllabus. Before you choose a language school abroad, ensure you see the syllabus for the classes you are considering, which will benefit you in several ways. First, you’ll have a good idea of what you’re going to learn. Second, you’ll be able to assess if the course is actually what you want and need.

If any of the language schools abroad can’t provide you with a syllabus, cross them off of your list. Every well-organized school – whether it’s a language school abroad, a high school science class or a university course – works with a syllabus.

Extras. Do the language schools abroad you’re considering offer field trips or any other type of activities for international students? You don’t want to just find yourself stuck in a classroom the whole time. Getting to know the culture of your host country is an important component of your whole experience.

Once you embark on your journey to one of the language schools abroad, have fun and remember you’ll be rewarded in more ways than becoming fluent in a foreign language -you’ll immerse yourself in the culture and make lifelong friends.