Contents - August 2008

Special report
Taking the industry’s pulse
What are the longer-term prospects for the language travel industry? Good – according to industry professionals and research analysts, although some expect a change in the way products are delivered or the languages that will be in vogue. Amy Baker reports.

LTM Star Awards contenders
The votes are in and counted and the shortlist is announced. This year’s contenders for the LTM Star Awards are revealed below and we talk to some of the shortlisted companies themselves to discover their reaction and find out why they think they did so well. 

Über-cool Germany
Germany has a lot to offer students in terms of natural landscapes, dynamic cities and an open-minded urban population. Jane Vernon Smith reports.


International allure

There is a TV show here in the UK called The Apprentice, which is my favourite TV programme – contestants prove their business acumen in tasks to win a coveted job. It finished this year with a candidate who had previously lied on his CV about his educational background scooping the prize job of UK£100,000 (US$200,000).

He was embarrased about his educational background (or lack of it) in the workplace, he said, suggesting that it is commonplace in the UK to have a degree when working in a professional context. Indeed, with close to 50 per cent of students in the UK now entering higher education, this seems a reasonable claim. And it is not only the UK which is exhibiting such an appetite for higher-level learning.

In our article on the prospects for longevity in the industry, we report high demand for university places in countries with rapidly developing populations and economies – such as China, Vietnam and India – is one reason for the rising demand for English language tuition. Many students in such countries are turning their attentions to education options overseas – predominantly in an English-speaking country but not exclusively – because their chances of studying at home are low.

As well as established education providers such as the UK and USA, Asian and Middle Eastern destinations are increasingly likely to be considered, given their English-medium education offered, as well as European countries such as the Netherlands and Germany, where fees are low and education provision can be bilingual or in English.

How easy it is to enter a country is of course a consideration for international students along with many other factors such as price, culture and connections with a particular place. For this reason, it is understandable that a major change to the UK visa system – expected to happen in next spring – has UK schools worried about a possible impact on enrolments, given that a slight fee increase is likely .

They will be pleased to discover, then, that agencies are sanguine that this will have no real adverse effect on business; rather, a transparent visa system might be a good thing

Talking of connections with a country, I think the decision by Aussie company, Navitas, to enlist a famous Australian cricketer to promote its programmes to an Asian audience is a great marketing tactic. Linking a cricket fanbase – which is sizable – to aspirational education in Australia might score very highly indeed.

International allure

UK schools must pay to use new visa system
Cricketer, Steve Waugh, to promote Navitas in Asia
New websites for Gaela and Seltic
Study Group launches Wales International Study Centre Nafsa celebrates 60th anniversary conference
Pearson acquires schools in China

Agency News
New Nordic agency association - Nalta
ELS hosts Chinese agents in USA
EduGlobal China to market Aussie education online

Agency Survey
Korea consistent
Growing demand for English study is fuelling demand for study abroad programmes in Korea, although destination trends show that Korean students are becoming increasingly concerned about the cost of travelling overseas for study purposes.

Central and Eastern European students were far more numerous in this year’s Feedback survey on Spain. Meanwhile, agent usage remains low and average length of stay dipped a little.

Executive courses in the USA
Demand for executive language courses in the USA shows no sign of slowing down and schools are increasingly led by their clients’ needs when developing new programmes. Flexibility and a highly intensive style of language learning are prerequisites for most executive-focused courses.

Course Guide
UK foundation
International students realise the importance of preparation when it comes to further education in Britain and UK foundation programmes offer a perfect university pathway.

USA 2007
The Status survey is a venture by Language Travel Magazine that aims to gather specific market data about all of the main language teaching markets in the world. Through our initiative, it is now possible to compare world market statistics.