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Contents - December 2011


Special Report
The Global Market 2010
2010 for the English language teaching market was not without its challenges. Immigration shakeups, currency fluctuations and the tail-end of the global economic slowdown all played their part. And while there is evidence of an overall decline in student intake and global revenue, this year’s analysis of global market statistics goes some way to prove what an economically viable industry it still is. Nicola Hancox reports.


Direction
Japanese language market
Japanese language schools suffered in the aftermath of the devastating disaster that struck the country in March, but students are returning, reports Matthew Knott.



Destination
Naturally New Zealand
Well-known for its pristine natural environment, New Zealand has much to offer students in the way of great outdoor opportunities and some unusual activities. Gillian Evans takes a look.




Vital statistics

I love statistics. Yes, that’s right. I love them (I also love excel spreadsheets). And this month my head is full of statistics (and spreadsheets) as we chart the rise and fall of the eight main English language teaching destinations in the world. I must say, there are a few surprises in our annual report (which our avid readers may have noticed has moved from its regular November slot) that looks at 2010 business trends. After several years of rapid growth the USA applied the brakes and posted an overall decline in student numbers and student weeks (see page 24). However, I recently spoke with a US language school association who were pleased to report phenomenal growth this year. Reasons for growth included China’s burgeoning middle class, the influx of Saudi students travelling to the US as part of the King Abdullah Scholarship Programme and the US dollar depreciating. It will be interesting to chart this market’s return to form in 12 months time.

Meanwhile, another ELT destination faced a challenge far greater than any economic phenomena. Not one but two devastating earthquakes struck New Zealand in quick succession. And while analysis of last year’s market indicates that the impact of the September 2010 quake appeared to be minimal, we will have to wait until next year to garner what long-term impact the second quake in February 2011 has had. Early forecasts do not look good, however. Christchurch was at the very epicentre of it all, a city considered a hub of New Zealand’s English language teaching industry (a large number of schools are located there), but the ripple affect will have been felt across the entire country. Pertinent too, then, that in this same issue we bring news of how one Christchurch-based school has, after undergoing several months of repair, reopened (see page 8). It is truly encouraging to see the city, and indeed the country, returning to some semblance of normality.

Japan too is having to repair the damage made to both its infrastructure (I was personally in awe at how quickly the Japanese authorities sprang into action and repaired a main highway just six days after the earthquake and resultant tsunami obliterated parts of the country) and its reputation. The press coverage by the world’s media in the aftermath of the disaster was branded as scaremongering by the Japanese government who, to their credit, went straight into damage limitation mode and now appear to be doing everything in their power to encourage students to return (see pages 36-37).


Opinion
Vital statistics


News
Irish Prime Minister attends MEI workshop
New councils for international education
New Zealand looks to toughen college English tests
Consumer protection in Australia, calls for UK to follow
Spanish school targets Chinese market
Latin America comes together

Business Focus
Languages International return to Christchurch
New camps and programmes for Tamwood
Rebrand and expansion for Bristol Language Centre

Advisor Survey
Kazakhstan grows
With a rapidly expanding economy, Kazakhstan is keen for its next generation to have solid, and international, academic credentials. And, with tuition fees at home universities on the rise, Kazakh parents are looking abroad more frequently for educational opportunities.

Feedback
USA
Although the proportion of students who first found out about their course through an agent was similar to last year, the proportion of students who actually booked through an education advisor was much lower.

Courseguide
TestDAF prep in Germany
TestDAF is the standardised test for German as a foreign language. Preparatory courses that adequately prepare students for the final exam are recommended.

Spotlight
Executive English in Australia
With an economy that has weathered the global recession better than most and a host of institutions offering flexible study options, Australia is a prime destination for executive English courses, as Matthew Knott discovers.

Status
Italy 2010



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