Language learning

Posts on learning a foreign language

Online learning vs Classroom learning

We think the most effective option for learning a language is full immersion, supplemented by structured classes, in a country where the target language is widely spoken. The next best option is to attend face-to-face classes while you are in New Zealand, guided by an experienced native teacher using...

Why is Australia ahead in language-learning?

VISION! This is so important. And vision doesn’t just happen. Strong leadership is critical. Which is why I’m pretty impressed with what Australia is doing. Our mates held the Australia 2020 Summit over the weekend. The Summit brought together community leaders, business people and ordinary folk, to talk about...

Why teach languages in schools?

I stumbled upon a survey currently conducted by an Australian online journal debating social and political issues of interest. The May 08 topic for discussion is “What’s the point of language teaching?” Is it just economic, or are the biggest benefits intrinsic? What languages should be taught, how should...

The laid-back life of the English speaker

Business trip to Asia? Of course, they’ll have someone there who speaks English. Holiday in Europe? Well, they all learn English at school, don’t they? And all the signs will be in English. And even if they don’t want to speak English, at least...

Are women really better at learning a language?

A recent article in Scientific American outlined results from a study showing that girls completing a linguistic abilities task showed greater activity in brain areas implicated specifically in language encoding, which decipher information abstractly. Boys, on the other hand, showed a lot of activity in regions tied to visual...

50 million learning a foreign language in China

I’m amazed to find out that China has nearly 50 million people who are currently learning foreign languages. According to a Chinese Ministry of Education official, 900 colleges offer an English major, and of those, more than 600 can confer a bachelor’s degree and more than 200 can confer...

Why a blog on language and culture?

We have been thinking about sharing some of our thoughts for a while. It recently dawned on me that we have access to a community of over 2000 New Zealanders, who have completed a course with us sometime over the past 5 years. Our team members have unique perspectives...