Classroom learningBeing back in a classroom may recall horrible memories of learning Latin or French by rote at school, but it’s a great all-round approach to a new language. A good teacher will cover all the skills you require – reading, speaking, writing and listening.

In addition to this, there is instant feedback on pronunciation and what you are doing wrong (and right!). Plus, you know when and where you will be learning each week, so the time is already set aside for you to do so. There is also the opportunity to become friendly with your classmates and converse outside of the class.

However, those who don’t feel comfortable in a group setting and speaking aloud in front of others may find the class setting overwhelming. A class also has to adapt to the various levels of ability within it, so a faster learner may feel held back whilst a slower learner may feel too rushed. There is the option of one-to-one classes, which may speed up improvement and make the student more comfortable. However, the cost of classes also has to be considered.

There is the cost of the classes themselves, but also any texts you may need, and the travel to and from the school. In addition, you need to find a class at a time that will be convenient and fit in with your other commitments.

Rob from Sheffield has been taking classes in German:

After finding out that I’d been accepted into a student exchange program in Germany, I figured I’d better learn enough of the language to get by. The Language Museum classes fit around my uni schedule, and I learned as much about the culture as I did about how to speak German. I’m now in the third week of the programme, and am even relaxed enough to have organised my first date!

(Note: learning a language does not guarantee you a date!)

Next time… the podcast.