October 2010 issue

Agency News
Agency Survey
Market Report
Special Report
Course Guide
Regional Focus

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Malta Feedback

With Asian student numbers affected by seasonality, Maltese language schools are looking towards alternative source markets like Central & Eastern Europe. Meanwhile, the standard of teaching was among the things students were most impressed by.

Malta Feedback at a glance

Total number of students: (female 38, male 20, unknown 5) 63
Average age in years:
Average length of programme in weeks:
Average number of students in class:
Average number of hours of language tuition per week:
% of students who found out about their course through an agent:
% of students who booked through an agent or adviser:
% of students who had been on another language programme:
% of students who would recommend their school:

Respondents by world region of origin Top nationalities
1. W Europe 67%
2. C & E Europe 19%
3. Middle East 3%
4. S America 1.5%
No reply 9.5%
1. Spanish 35%
2. Italian 19%
3. German 9.5%
4. Russian 6%
5. Bulgarian 3%
5. Libyan 3%
5. Polish 3%
5. Ukrainian 3%

In my class there are... How easy is it to practise your language skills with native speakers?
1. The right amount of students (46%)
2. Too many students who speak my language (25%)
2. Too many students from one other country (14%)
Too many students (6%)
No reply 9%
1. Quite easy (60%)
2. Quite hard (23%)
3. Very easy (14%)
4. Very hard (1.5%)
No reply 1.5%

How did you find your programme? Did you book your course through an agent or an educational adviser?
1. I found it on the Internet (51%)
2. Recommended by a friend/relative (19%)
3. Recommended by an agent (17%)
4. I saw it advertised 4%
Nor reply 9%
Yes (38%)
No (51%)
Unknown (11%)

Student reasons for school selection included:
“A quick reply, good price, clear info on Internet and helpfulness of staff”
“Good experience in the past, location and price”
“Not very big, more private, good price”
“Because of the study and work experience programme”
“Heard a lot of nice things about Malta”
“Because it was cheaper than the others and they had family courses”

Before looking for your course, did you know where you wanted to study?
Yes (65%)
No (30%)
Unknown (5%)

Yes (22%)
No (65%)
Unknown (13%)
Yes (19%)
No (70%)
Unknown (11%)

Student nationality
Just 13 different nationalities were present in this year’s Feedback survey of the Maltese English language teaching market, a majority of which were Western European. This world region has consistently supplied Malta’s language schools with a bulk of students over the last few years, accounting for 50 per cent of the student body in 2008 (see LTM October 2008, pages 20-21), 68 per cent in 2009 (see LTM November 2009, pages 28-29) and 67 per cent in 2010. Conversely, the number of Asian students studying English in Malta has dropped just as consistently, from 22 per cent in 2007 (see LTM September 2007, pages 18-19) to just nine per cent in 2008 and 2009. This year, Asian students were entirely absent from the poll. One provider noted that Asian enrolments were quite time sensitive given that Asian students prefer to come for longer periods, usually in the low season, whilst summer enrolments were typically favoured by Europeans. Elsewhere, Central & Eastern European numbers were up with representation from Belarus, Bulgaria, the Czech Republic, Poland, Russia and the Ukraine.

Student motivation
This year course length ranged from one to 20 weeks, averaging 3.4 weeks, compared with 4.8 in 2009. The sample majority (63 per cent), however, had plumped for a course lasting either two or three weeks. A greater proportion of respondents classed themselves as university or college students (40 per cent) this year, compared with 49 per cent in 2009. This statistic is supported by the fact that 54 per cent of students were presently using English for study purposes back home. Interestingly, teachers made up the second largest group of respondents (14 per cent), followed by high school students (10 per cent).

Student enrolment
Student respondents relied heavily on the Internet when planning their study abroad vacation this year (51 per cent compared with 53 per cent in 2009). Referrals also held sway, with 19 per cent relying on the advice of family and friends and a further 17 per cent relying on the guidance of an educational adviser. The number of students acting upon this advice and booking directly via an agency, however, dipped from 44 per cent to 38 per cent this year.

Standard of the schools
Language schools in Malta have shown a trend towards smaller class sizes in previous years and 2010 is no exception. Averaging seven persons per class a majority of the sample (46 per cent) said that they were happy with both class size and nationality mix. However, 25 per cent thought there were too many students that spoke their own language (63 per cent of which were Spanish) while a further 14 per cent thought there were too many students from one other country. When asked about the standard of the school’s teachers, 92 per cent of student repsondents thought that they were either excellent or good.

Living in Malta
Students were confident when it came to communicating with the locals, with 74 per cent finding this very easy or quite easy to converse, compared with 24.5 per cent who found it quite hard or very hard. Forty per cent of the sample found the cost of living to be lower than in their home country, which is surprising given that the majority were Western European. The average expenditure per week, including course and accommodation fees, was estimated to be e429 (US$550).

Thank you to the following schools for participating in our survey: Iels - LAL Malta, Sliema; inlingua Malta, Sliema; Alpha School of English, St. Paul’s Bay; International House Malta-Gozo, various; Clubclass Residential Language School, Swieqi; English Language Academy, Sliema; AClass Academy of English, Pembroke.
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.






Britannia Student
Hostel World  
International Students
Smart City Hostels  

English Australia  
IALC International  
International House
      World Organisation  
MEI Ireland 
NEAS Australia
Perth Education
Quality English

Alphe Conferences

Cambridge Esol  

Dr. Walter GmbH  
Student Guard

ICEF Agent
LTM Digital  

Cyprus Tourist
Malta Tourism

Almond Vocational
Professionals UK  

Ability Education  
Bond University  
Carrick Institute
      of Education  
La Trobe University  
Language Studies
NEAS Australia  
Pacific Gateway
      International College  
Perth Education
      International College
Universal English
      College (Global
      Village Sydney)  
University of
University of
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University of
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Ceran Lingua

Queen Margaret's
Student Guard
Vancouver English

Cyprus Tourist
Language Explorer
Xenion High

Mandarin House  

Almond Vocational
      Student Services
      Education Group 
Cambridge Esol
IALC International
International House
      World Organisation
      Students House  
Kaplan Aspect  
King Colleges  
LAL Central
      Marketing Office  
Language in Group
Malvern House
      College London  
Professionals UK  
Sedbergh School  
Spinnaker College  
St Giles Colleges  
Study Group  
Thames Valley
      Summer Schools  
Twin Group  
University of
      Essex -

Universite de
      Paris Sorbonne  

International House
      Berlin - Prolog  

Alpha College of
Hostel World  
MEI Ireland  

      Language School  
EC English
      Language Centre  
Malta Tourism

EAC Language
      Centres and
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Smart City Hostels
University of
Cape English
      Language School 

Malaga Si
      Spanish Courses

EF Language
      Colleges Ltd 

ELS Language
Hargrave Military
Zoni Language

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