Thinking of really learning French? If you’re seriously considering joining the French-speaking world, you might want to consider going to a French school. I’m not talking about talking a French class – no, if you are serious about learning French fast, a French school in a foreign country can help you achieve your dream.
When picking a French school, you want to be sure to choose the school that’s right for you. You wouldn’t want to waste your resources on a school that promises the sky but delivers nothing but fluffy clouds. I plan more information of French school in the near-future, for now here are some things you need to consider when selecting a French-learning school:
- Know your needs – Some schools offer excellent courses for beginners; others provide excellent training for more advanced French learners who have had prior experience and exposure to French. Which course type is best for you? You have to honestly assess your level and consider it when scouting for a school. Don’t be over-confident when estimating your French skills! When you have a fair idea where your French level is at, you’d be in a better position to start your research or discuss your options with an advisor.
- Check the school’s reputation – Language schools are big businesses. Reputation is important to assure current and prospective students of the quality of learning the institution offers. How do you determine what a French school’s reputation is in education and learning circles? Check its affiliations and accreditations. School’s endorsed by reputable organizations are likely to be more effective at teaching French. You can be sure that their curriculum and methodology are up to scratch and up-to-date.
- Consider the size of the school – This one is a bit tricky. On the one hand, large French language schools would normally have better facilities. Smaller schools, though, have more one-on-one instructor time for students. Then again, larger schools tend to have more homogeneous learner groups which may help students learn the language faster because they can practice it more often. So in deciding whether to go with a small or large school, do your research. Look the school up online and check out reviews. Ultimately, the school’s effectiveness in teaching French should be your main consideration.
- Check the school’s facilities – When you sign up for a French school, your goal is fluency. Acquiring fluency is a skill you must work hard to develop. To do this, you need constant correct practice. Developing clear, understandable command of spoken French and being able to understand a native speaker is important in communicating in a new language. For this reason, speech labs are necessary. Students need to be able to practice with instructors looking on (or more aptly, listening), with their own language partners, and by themselves. When you can listen to how you pronounce the words, you can then check on how well or badly you’re progress with your lessons.
- Do the Math – If there’s one thing shopping for shoes should have taught you by now, it’s that you get what you pay for. The same is true of language schools. Some schools offer lessons for the price of a whistle and a song while others demand heftier price tags. Naturally, you would want to learn from the best. But does the best fit your budget? So before you sign up for a school, take the time to go over how much you can afford to pay. Then, look up how much different schools charge. The fact that French language schools are abundant works in your favor. You can whittle your search down to language schools in countries where the cost of living is cheaper – Canada, for example, or Argentina.
Other considerations, such as location of the school or accessibility, are factors that don’t directly relate to language learning but which you might feel necessary as a student. Ultimately, your choice will have to be made based on personal circumstances, needs, or preferences.