Language school

Language school

A language school is a school where one studies a foreign language. Classes at a language school are usually geared towards, but not limited to, communicative competence in a foreign language. Language learning in such schools typically supplements formal education or existing knowledge of a foreign language.

Students vary widely by age, educational background, work experience, and language proficiency.


As a general rule, new students take a placement test which enables teachers to determine which is the most appropriate level for the student. Courses can be organized in groups or for individuals (one-to-one lessons). These language schools, generally open all year round, are equipped with pedagogical material (books, tape recorders, videos, language laboratories, a library, etc).


Most language schools are private and for-profit. Fees vary depending on demand for the language in the area where a school is located. Language schools are either independent entities or corporate franchises.

Language teachers

Teachers are expected to possess native speaker fluency or acquired competence in their target languages; formal qualifications to become a language teacher, however, vary by school, region or country. Teachers may have graduated with a B.A, Master's degree or a Ph.D. Pedagogy, experience and strong teaching skills are the principal criteria during the recruitment of the language school's teachers.


Most language schools offer various kinds of accommodation to their students: host family (homestays), campus residences, shared housing, or even hotels.

Host families may live close to the selected school and students can go there walking or by public transport. The campuses and shared apartments, generally available for students aged over 18, offer various facilities such as an Internet access, TV sets, air conditioning or heating, and a shared kitchen.

International language exams

Language schools commonly offer specific programs to those wishing to prepare for internationally recognized language exams such as:
* TOEIC (English)
* TOEFL (English)
* University of Cambridge ESOL examinations (English)
* DELE (Spanish)
* JLPT (Japanese)
* KLPT (Korean)

Common languages and destinations

Study at a language school involves a wide range of languages and destinations. Common ones include: Fact|date=September 2008

* English (in the United Kingdom, in Ireland, in Malta, in Canada, in the United States, in Australia or in New Zealand)
*European languages:
** German (in Germany and Austria)
** French (in France, in Belgium or in Québec, Canada)
** Spanish (in Spain and Latin America)
** Italian (in Italy, Somalia and Albania)
** Portuguese (in Portugal and Brazil)
** Russian (in Russia)
* East Asian languages:
**Chinese (in China)
**Japanese (in Japan)
**Korean (in South Korea)
* Arabic (Arab world countries — including the Arabian Peninsula and North Africa)

Language travel

Some organizations combine language study with foreign travel in "exotic" destinations (Costa Rica, Malta, Morocco, etc), which allow greater immersion and understanding of the the destination country and language.

English language schools

Globally, English language schools have seen the greatest demand over schools for other languages. Over one billion people are said to be learning English in a second language or foreign language context. [ [ ESL Market Statistics - How many people learn English world wide] ] In the United States alone, ESL learners make up over one-third of all adult, non-academic learners. [ [ How large is the ESL market - English learning market statistics] ]

English language schools are among the most numerous in Asian countries such as China, Japan and South Korea, as Western culture influences the rising demand for English in business and cultural contexts.

Other language schools

Spanish is the second most popular language in the language travel market followed with some distance by French, Italian and German.Fact|date=September 2008 While demand for French, Italian and German is decreasing, the demand for other languages such as Chinese and Arabic has significantly increased within the last years. []


Thanks to the rising Chinese economy, Chinese is one of the largest growing languages among second or foreign language learners, and demand for such classes has typically followed suit. Language schools teaching Mandarin Chinese in the United States and the United Kingdom have increased in number over the last two decades.


Arabic has also grown in popularity in the last decade. Reasons include the continued growth of Islam worldwide (the Koran holy book is in Arabic), as well as cultural, economical and political reasons.

ee also

*Language education
*English language learning and teaching
*Teaching English as a Foreign Language
*Français langue étrangère
*Arabic language school
*Second language acquisition

External links

* [ Immersion English Learning]
* [ EuroLanguages - Book language courses online]
* [ ELT Banbury]
* [ East London School of English]
* [ Language Schools Worldwide]
* [ Foreign Language Schools]
* [ European Language Portfolio]
* [ Council of Europe, European]
* [ Spanish Language Schools worldwide]
* [ LanguageCourse.Net - Reviews of language schools]
* [ Language Schools Guide]
* [ Language Learning]


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