With a huge selection of language schools in Cologne-Bonn it's not always easy to choose the right one. We give you an essential check list of criteria to make that decision easier.
1. Aims and time frame
What do you want to achieve and in what time frame? As a rule of thumb, taking lessons once or twice a week is good for mid- to long-term language competence, while intensive courses are good for fast, goal-oriented learning.
2. The costs
Courses offered by state-run schools are cheaper but private schools offer more tailor-made courses. A good way of comparing prices is to calculate the cost per hour.
3. Quality of advice
Does the school take the trouble to offer advice, needs assessment and grading? Is it possible to have a free, no-obligation trial lesson?
4. The teacher
What qualifications and experience does the teacher have? It´s normally better to have lessons from a native speaker but teaching skills are also important.
5. A change of teacher
It´s important to ask whether you´ll get the same teacher for your lessons or different ones each time. A change of teacher is an advantage in intensive (daily) courses. It´s best to have the same teacher for weekly courses.
6. Class sizes
Ask how big the classes will be. A small group of 2 to 6 students is ideal. A prerequisite for good learning success in larger groups is the homogeneity of the group, i.e. that all participants have similar background knowledge and goals.
7. Teaching methods
You´ll do much better with lessons that suit your personal learning goals and your individual learning style. Some language schools use role playing and multimedia in their lessons.
8. Practice makes perfect
Regardless of which course you choose, take the opportunity to practice your foreign language skills outside the classroom. Good luck and have fun!