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Contents - July 2009

Special report
In the loop
Being a member of a language school association certainly has its advantages. Speaking with a unified voice, these associations help regulate the industry and create synergy across the board, promoting quality education, best practice and supporting member schools in all aspects of regulatory advocacy. Nicola Hancox looks at the benefits of being kept in the loop.

Market Report
Fingers crossed in the UK
Language schools in the UK are cautious in forecasting a great year in 2009, what with the world still in recession and teething troubles with the new visa system. But they all acknowledge that the weakened pound has led to buoyant business in a year when many might not have expected such results. Amy Baker reports.

City Focus
Beauty of Cape Town
Cape Town in South Africa is one of the world’s must-see cities, with its mountains and beaches, sunny disposition and a beautifully eclectic mix of architectures. Gillian Evans takes a look.

Hard to resist

I’ve been contemplating buying an iphone for sometime but have recently decided that I can wait no longer – I need constant contact with the online world; what was that I was saying in a previous editorial about enjoying getting away from it all?!

The lure of the online world is increasingly evident in the study abroad industry, and more stories this month testify to this fact. Kaplan are now publishing iphone applications for Toefl students while Cambridge Esol has announced that one million visitors have visited its website, where language learners can keep track of their achievements online using an “ePortfolio” . Meanwhile, one hostel provider is promising to be the cheapest accommodation booking site on the web and vouching a money-back offer if proved wrong .

The Internet can offer a lot, increasingly so, but one thing that it cannot offer is a qualified recommendation, which as we all know is why agencies continue to be so important in the distribution chain. The many agent-oriented events held in the spring serve as a reminder as to the importance that educators continue to place on good agent networks , while in our UK Market Report, the only school reporting an upward trend on Korean enrolments attests this is due to focusing time and energy on agent partnerships and attending agent events in this country .

Good education agents like to be as clued up as possible about industry trends and course offerings, so we hope that our guide to targeted 50-plus programmes around the world will prove useful in your work . And another interesting topic touched upon this month is the issue of “green” credentials at language schools, or commitment to sustainability, which Canadian expert Terry Rogocki, who provided a lot of useful background information for this feature, defines as, “Taking responsibility to continuously develop a balance between social, environmental and economic considerations”.

Finding out about a school’s efforts towards sustainability is difficult to do online; this is often a subtle direction that schools are taking that is not marketed visibly as a selling point. This is because many schools feel a green approach to operations is not, in itself, a selling point, but an ethical belief. That said, I think this will become more commonplace until the appeal is hard to resist, much like the iphone, although the other end of the spectrum of things to care about!

Hard to resist

Spring workshop season upbeat
IH World welcomes NYC
STS celebrates one million customers
New six-month work/study clause in NZ
Australia increases English requirement for catering trade jobs
Twin Group in the UK expands to USA

Agency News
HSI/Into organise exclusive agent event in Korea
Agency associations organise student fairs

Agency Survey
Japan loses pace
Despite the gloom and doom of Japan’s economic outlook, agents have identified potential growth areas in the language travel market for this year.

South Africa
This issue’s South Africa Feedback survey reveals a greater proportion of students from other African countries studying English in South Africa, mainly so they can continue their tertiary studies there.

Uni prep in the USA
University prep courses are specifically designed for students who are considering tertiary education in a foreign country. Offering a fast and academically sound route into higher education, they aim to prepare students for all the rigmaroles of university life. In some cases, language schools work in conjunction with an established university while some tertiary providers prefer to administer their own programme. Nicola Hancox reports.

Course Guide
50-plus courses
Courses aimed at the more mature student differ from general language programmes in that they are specifically designed with an older audience in mind.
Learning with students of a similar age, candidates can also enjoy extra-curricular activities that are targeted specifically at their age group, from food and wine appreciation to walking.

Australia 2008
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.

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