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Contents - July 2011


Special Report
Hands-on learning
The vocational education sector covers a vast range of subjects and qualifications and is increasingly of interest for those wanting job-ready skills. Jane Vernon Smith reports.


Direction
UK’s Tier 4 student visa reforms
The recent student visa review in the UK has had far reaching consequences for those involved in the study abroad industry. Bethan Norris talks to some of those affected and finds out what the changes will mean to students, advisors and schools.



Destination
Spain’s magic
A language stay in Spain is a colourful treat for all the senses, as Gillian Evans reports.




Recognition

The excitement is mounting in the STM office as we announce that the voting period for the LTM Star Awards has now closed. The votes are now being counted and nominees will soon be informed of their success. The enthusiasm with which individuals greet the news that they have been nominated for a Star Award is always rewarding for us all in the office and reminds us that everyone in all levels of the study abroad industry appreciates being recognised for all their hard work.

For the first time this year we have decided to introduce a LTM Star Award category for vocational colleges and the votes for colleges in this sector revealed how the boundary between language and education travel is continually blurring. Many of the vocational colleges offer a range of language as well as vocational programmes and it is interesting to see how the vocational sector is developing to cater for those wanting to gain a vocational qualification while also perfecting their language skills. Our Special Report on the vocational education sector (page 26) highlights that demand for vocational programmes from international students around the world is growing, whether as a stepping stone from language programmes to other educational goals or as job-ready qualifications in their own right.

An understanding of the role of vocational education in international study travel is key for those involved in government policy making, particularly for those governments that view international students entering the vocational education sector as migrants looking for an easy way into the country. The UK’s recent Tier 4 visa review has introduced some challenging changes in the system recently, not least of which is the different criteria for those wanting to study in government-funded universities and colleges and those studying in the private sector (page 38). Two UK associations for language schools and private colleges are currently challenging the new changes (page 6), which penalise those applying for a visa to study in the private sector. For those businesses already struggling in the current economic climate, being penalised by the visa authorities simply for being a private business seems unfair and ignores the economic contribution such enterprises bring to the country. Many language schools and private colleges in the UK are calling for a level playing field when it comes to students applying for visas to study in the country and it seems unfair that this is not already the case.


Opinion
Recognition


News
Associations challenge UKBA legislation
EAC launches new venue for language camps
Dublin school ceases trading
Nacac members to vote on advisor usage
Global Village to rebrand as Lexis English
Academies Australasia acquires Benchmark College

Business Focus
New indexing system measures English skills
ExpoBelta welcomes record numbers of attendees
English Australia guide for agents

Advisor Survey
Japan rights itself
2010 proved a fruitful year for Japanese study abroad advisories, with some variation in favoured English-speaking destinations. While forecasts for 2011 are somewhat bleak, there are some positives to be gleaned.

Feedback
Canada
This issue’s Canada Feedback survey reveals a high proportion of Asian students studying English for their further studies either in Canada or another English-speaking country.

Courseguide
Russian language programmes
There are a number of options for Russian language learners and with language schools in Russia, the Ukraine and Latvia, students have the opportunity to embrace a number of different cultures during their studies. The schools below offer a range of language programmes, including opportunities for students to immerse themslves in local life by volunteering or studying in a teacher’s home.


Spotlight
English plus sports in Malta
Given its Mediterranean locale, English language schools in Malta are well placed to offer combination courses such as English plus sailing and English plus kayaking. Land-based sporting combos such as English plus golf are also available.

Status
Australia 2010



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