Most expatriates coming to work or study in Thailand do use English as their first language. English is one of the formal languages in the country. This article suggested by EFL Learning Centre will help you find the right English school in Chiang Mai and the steps you should follow when selecting the course.
5 Steps to Consider When Selecting an English Language School in Chiang Mai
1. Teacher Qualification
They are the first indicator of quality service. Their qualification, proficiency and curriculum sell more than any other aspect. Basic qualifications should include a graduate degree in either English language or literature, grammar test and teaching experience. Teaching international students and students from different age groups is an added advantage. It helps them know how to deal with the different clusters and offer personalised studies to each student.
2. Type of Courses Offered
Learning English as a foreign language requires specialised attention. The decision to choose a type of English course depends on the following:-
- Basic Communication – expatriates who do not have a background in English can enrol for a simple communication course to help them communicate better.
- History and Development – it is a deeper understanding of the language involving formation, growth and composition. This format is reserved for those who study it as a career.
- Time – it goes hand in hand with basic communication. Most expatriates who enrol in an English school in Chiang Mai have limited time. Short term English courses are ideal for them.
- Speciality – this type of approach mostly deal with people in a specific need, thanks to their work environment. They enrol to learn the keywords used in their environment and how to better their understanding of their job.
3. Learning Environment
The classroom and general environment significantly contribute to understanding. Amenities and people within the learning environment form part of the learning. It should be conducive, preferably with an open garden where students can relax after a lesson. Such gardens form social venues where students can interact and improve their grasp of English.
A library is also an essential installation in an English language school. It must have English dictionaries, encyclopaedias, translation books and storybooks. Translation books help further understand the English language by directly translating from their home language into English. Storybooks help in thinking and speaking in English.
4. Support for International Students
It mostly applies to students from non-English speaking countries who want to further their education in Thailand. Support services include linkages to Thai financial service providers, internship service, VISA processing, airport pickup, or enrolling in charity work. In case you plan on staying in Thailand for a while, consider the programs fronted by the school, which helps integrate faster into Thailand’s system.
Such services usually do not attract a facilitating fee and act as an incentive. If an English school in Chiang Mai offers such support services, consider joining.
The majority of English language schools advertise online. Try finding out what other students say about the school and its performance. It is the first research one does before physically visiting the premise. Good feedback is a positive indication of good service. If you can directly contact one of the former students for a person-to-person review, it can significantly contribute to the rating.