July 2006 issue

Travel News
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Agency Survey
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South Africa

South African English language schools are attracting students from a broader range of world regions as well as those with more serious language learning goals.

South Africa feedback at a glance
Total number of students: female 36, male 42, 78

Average age in years: 29

Average length of programme in weeks: 10.4

Average number of students in class: 5.6

Average number of hours of language tuition per week: 24.3

% of students who found their course through an agent: 42

% of students who booked through an agent or adviser: 49

% of students who had been on another lang. programme: 37

% of students who would recommend their school: 99

Respondents by world region of origin Top nationalities
W Europe (23%)
Asia (18%)
Africa (15%)
C & L America (9%)
C & E Europe (5%)
Unknown (4%)
1. German (15%)
1. Swiss (15%)
3. Japanese (8%)
3. Korean (8%)
5. Czech (5%)
5. Angolan (5%)
5. Brazilian (5%)
8. Dutch (4%)
8. French (4%)
8. Mozambican (4%)
8. Spanish (4%)

In my class there are... How will you use your English in the future?
Too many students (9%)
Too many students of my language (9%)
Too many students from one other countries (8%)
None of these (73%)
Unknown (1%)
Coll. study in South Africa (12%)
College study elsewhere (9%)
College study at home (17%)
Current or fututre work (54%)
For pleasure only (8%)

How did you find your programme? Standard of the teaching
It was recommended by an agent (42%)
II found it on the Internet (35%)
It was recommended by a friend/relative (20%)
I saw it advertised (3%)
Excellent (45%)
Good (45%)
Satisfactory (4%)
Unsatisfactory (1%)
Unknown (5%)

Standard of your academic programme Standard of your accommodation
Excellent (27%)
Good (37%)
Satisfactory (13%)
Poor (4%)
Unsatisfactory (3%)
Unknown (16%)
Excellent (23%)
Good (33%)
Satisfactory (24%)
Poor (5%)
Unsatisfactory (1%)
Unknown (14%)

Standard of your social programme? What is your accomodation while in South Africa?
Excellent (15%)
Good (32%)
Satisfactory (23%)
Poor (9%)
Unsatisfactory (31%)
Unknown (16%)
Host family (51%)
Residential/single room (26%)
Residential/dormitory (4%)
Other (13%)
No reply (6%)

Did you book your course through an agent or an educational adviser?
Yes (73%)
No (26%)
Unknown (1%)

Before looking for your course, did you know where you wanted to study?
Yes (67%)
No (32%)
Unknown (1%)
Yes (65%)
No (35%)
Yes (45%)
No (53%)
Unknown (2%)

Student nationality
Although the South African English teaching market continues to draw a large proportion of students from Western Europe, there are signs that a more diverse range of nationalities are choosing to study there. In this year’s South Africa Feedback survey, Western Europeans made up just under half of the total students who took part, down on the 57 per cent recorded in our last South Africa survey in July 2003 (see Language Travel Magazine, July 2003, pages 14-15). A greater number of Africans – up from six per cent in 2003 to 15 per cent this year – and Latin Americans – whose share jumped from three per cent to nine per cent – were evident this year.

Student motivation
The average age of students, at just under 29 years, was relatively high compared with other language travel destinations, such as the UK where the average is 24 (see Language Travel Magazine, April 2006, pages 16-17). This, coupled with the fact that over 60 per cent of respondents were in employment, resulted unsurprisingly in current or future work being the main reason for taking an English course in South Africa. With such serious goals, it also meant that the average hours of English studied per week – 24.3 hours – was relatively high. Among those with more academic motivations for learning English, 12 per cent were going on to study in South Africa (up on nine per cent in 2003), while a further nine per cent were hoping to study in another English-speaking country.

Student enrolment
The average length of stay increased this year, up from 9.3 weeks in 2003 to 10.3 weeks, which may be owing to South Africa’s increasing appeal as a serious language travel destination rather than a vacation location. Agents remain important to the South African market with 42 per cent of students saying they had found out about their school through an agent. However, although 49 per cent of respondents indicated that they had booked through an agency, this was down from 55 per cent in our previous survey.

Standard of the schools
The quality of the language schools that took part in our survey was exceptionally high, evidenced by the fact that 99 per cent of students said they would recommend their school to other students (the other one per cent did not reply). Looking at individual aspects of the study experience, the teachers scored highly, with 90 per cent of students saying they were good or excellent. Accommodation was also rated highly, with 80 per cent of students saying it was at least satisfactory. Indeed, host family accommodation, which accounted for the living arrangements of just over half of the students, received outstanding commendations, with 75 per cent of those staying with host families saying the standard of accommodation was good or excellent.

Living in South Africa
South Africa represents good value for money in comparison with many other English language destinations, so it comes as no surprise that 47 per cent of students found the cost of living to be lower in South Africa than in their home countries, 76 per cent of whom were Western Europeans and a further 14 per cent from Asia. The average cost for a course plus accommodation was US$311 per week.

Thank you to the following schools for participating in our survey:
Boston Language College, Cape Town; Cape Studies, Cape Town; Eurocentres, Cape Town; Good Hope Studies, City Centre and Southern Suburbs; Interlink School of Languages, Cape Town; International House, Durban; Wits Language School, Johannesburg.

Contact any advertiser in the this issue now

The following language schools, associations and accommodation providers advertised in the latest edition of Language Travel Magazine. If you would like more information on any of these advertisers, tick the relevant boxes, fill out your details and send.




Asociación Gallega
       de Escuelas de
       Español - AGAES
Education New
       Zealand Trust
English Australia
English UK
Quality English
Turlingua -
       Consortium of
       Travel and Tourism

       Star Awards

Malta Tourism
Language Travel

English Australia
Sydney West
       International College

Central de
       - Come 2 Brazil
IDIOMA Escola de
STB - Student Travel
       Bureau - Inbound

Access International

Mandarin House

Anglolang Academy
       of English
Aspect (Australia,
       Canada, England,
       France, Germany,
       Ireland, Malta,
       New Zealand,
       Scotland, South
       Africa, Spain, USA)
Beet Language
Bell International
       (Malta, UK)
Bristol Language
Cambridge Academy
       of English
Churchill House
Cicero Languages
Eastbourne School
       of English
Eckersley School of
English Language
       Centre Brighton &
English UK
Excel English
       Language School

Frances King
       School of English
King Street College
Lake School of
LAL Language and
       (England, Malta,
       South Africa, USA)
Languages Out
       There (England,
       Germany, Ireland,
       Italy, Spain)
London School of
Malvern House
       Language School
Oxford Brookes
Quality English
Queen Ethelburga's
St Giles Colleges
       (UK, USA)
Study Group
       (Australia, Canada,
       England, France,
       Germany, Ireland,
       Italy, New Zealand,
       South Africa,
       Spain, USA)
University of
       Sheffield (England)
West London
       Business College
Wimbledon School
       of English

Prolog- International
       House Berlin

Cork Language
       Centre International
Linguaviva Centre

International English
       Language Centre
Malta Tourism

Home Language
       Australia, Austria,
       Brazil, Canada,
       Chile, China,
       England, France,
       Germany, Holland,
       Italy, Japan, Malta,
       New Zealand,
       Portugal, Russia,
       Spain, USA)

Auckland English
Education New
       Zealand Trust
Rotorua English
       Language Academy

York School

Language Link,
Liden & Denz
       Language Centre

Cape Studies -
       Pacific Gateway
       Study Group
Interlink School of
International House
       - Durban
Jeffrey's Bay
       Language Centre
South African
       School of English

Asociación Gallega
       de Escuelas de
       Español - AGAES
Kingsbrook -
       Spanish for
Pamplona Learningn
       Spanish Institute
Turlingua -
       Consortium of
       Language Travel
       and Tourism

EF Language
       Colleges Ltd
       (Australia, Canada,
       China, Ecuador,
       England, France,
       Germany, Ireland,
       Italy, Malta, New
       Zealand, Russia,
       Scotland, Spain,

American Language
California State
California State
       San Marcos
Kaplan Educational
       Centers (Canada,
       England, USA)
University of
       California Santa
University of
University of
       Nebraska at Omaha
Zoni Language


St Paul's
       International School

Richmond School
       District #38

Oxford Brookes

University of

Xincon Technology