How to find the best online English course

Online learning

What’s the best way to learn English online?

So you’re considering learning English, or perhaps improving existing skills, but you’re not sure the best way to do it. How easy is it to learn English online? How much does it cost? Most importantly, which is the best online English course when there are so many to choose from?

You’ll find some answers simply by asking yourself a few key questions. For example, if you know what you want to achieve and how important it is to you, then you’ll be half-way there. Think also about how you learn best, how much you want to spend and how much time you have available. Here are a few tips to get you started on your path to learning English.

Self-study English

If you think you might prefer a self-study course, there are some excellent free courses and resources available to help you learn English by yourself. As well as enrolling on a course, be sure to watch English films and TV shows, listen to music and read online English publications.  You do need to be very self-motivated to learn on your own so try to set aside a fixed period of time each day when you can focus undisturbed.

Learn with a teacher

If you don’t feel you’re sufficiently motivated to learn independently, and need some extra support, then learning with a teacher may be a better option.  A good teacher will provide constant feedback, so you know where you’re going wrong and how much you’re improving. However, there’s a bewildering number of language schools and private teachers and tutors offering English language courses and classes so do take time to work out your budget, timeframe and your own personal goals.

Of course, it’s also important you get on with your teacher. Find out who your teacher will be before you start lessons, and if possible, book a one-off lesson to get to know each other.

How much are online English courses?

To coin a great British phrase, ‘how long is a piece of string?’!  The cost varies enormously, depending on whether you go to a recognised international school, the quality of teaching and how long your course is. When you compare costs, be sure to check the length of lessons too – some may seem cheaper but may only be for 45 minutes, rather than an hour.

Should I book individual or group lessons?

With one-to-one individual English lessons, your teacher will be able to personalise your course so you learn quicker. Whether you want to focus on conversation skills, or academic or business English, your course will be specific to your needs. Joining group lessons is, of course, cheaper, but as there will inevitably be different levels within the group, and fewer opportunities to speak, progress is likely to be slower.

A popular low-cost option with our students is arranging a private teacher for a small group – say 3 or 4 of you. The others may be friends, fellow students or business colleagues who have the same learning objectives and are a similar level. The advantage is that you choose your lesson schedule, and the teacher will create a tailormade course specifically for your group.

What about online English courses for children and teenagers?

Much of this also applies to children and young adults. Most importantly, however, do check whether your teacher has worked with children before. Whatever age your children, they’ll learn more quickly from a teacher they like and have fun with. Again, if you want to keep costs down, why not check to see if they have any friends who would like to get involved in a small group class?

Want to know more? Read more about Lingua Holidays online English courses, the cost of lessons and the best course for you.