In prior articles, we have largely discussed the importance of a mid to high proficiency level in English. We have described how it allows people to communicate around the world, close commercial and non-profit deals, learn more about all fields of expertise, exchange ideas and points of view, make new friends, travel, study, work and progress in life. It pushes back the boundaries of what we can do, and for this reason, everybody should develop their language proficiency, especially when it comes to English, present day's universal language.
Educational institutions and country governments are starting to see the importance of this. Language learning isn't just an option for a better future, but rather a need that is created in modern times. With millions of people relocating every year, be them refugees, voluntary expats or go-getters, it becomes necessary to study different languages for the sake of social inclusion. Education can be the difference between a marginal life that can only lead to crime and poverty, and a successful career or job history.
For these reasons, schools are rushing to hire more bilingual teachers. In countries where there is a strong immigration trend, like the United States, educative centers and schools have started to gather private funds in order to face the increasing demand of teachers that can be inclusive for people who speak different languages. Many refugees flee awful life conditions and threatening wars, and they all deserve the chance to go to school and become qualified professionals. How could this be possible if they can't understand the classes and the teachers when they're six years old?
Being bilingual is more of an advantage in several job niches than it has ever been, so taking time to perfect your English is a true investment in your economical and professional future.
Language classes have been quite the same for a long time. One teacher standing in front of a class, reciting the lesson of the day, the students repeating after the teacher, then solving some exercises on their workbooks, and then sitting down at home to review the lessons. It's simple and well known, but as education advances, new teaching techniques prove to be much better. Not only do the students learn faster and easier, but also they show a much better performance in the real world, where language is meant to be used anyway.
In other words, with the traditional teaching method, several students would have great grades on their highly structured written and oral tests, but then they would struggle in a real life situation when recurring to English. Accents and dialects change, people speak faster and use coloquial expressions, and the list of colours and days of the week isn't used as often in real life as it is in the classroom.
This new approach of teaching is actually much more similar to real life learning experiences. Immersion courses aren't based in a classroom scheme, even if they could feature some traditional classes like those in order to complement the students' learning. The base of an immersion course is that the student is constantly surounded by the target language in a real life environment, which is non-structured, continuous and has realistic challenges.
There are various companies offering Immersion courses because they are of proven efficiency. They are intense indeed, as students spend many hours a day - sometimes literally all the time - in an English speaking environment. This way, they are forced to interact in English and can't rely on their first language to communicate. Also, they are continuously exposed to English, so they are constantly assimilating the sound, phrasing, tone and words of an English conversation.
Immersion courses take the students to real life situations: walking on the street, going to stores or restaurants, purchasing everyday objects, taking transport, visiting landmarks and even chatting in English during the meals. Of course, they are not always alone in this. Specialized native teachers go with them all the time and point out their mistakes. Then, they work over such mistakes until the student has overcome these obstacles and progressed in their learning of English.
We suggest that you take an immersion course, because it is much more useful than a traditional course where you'll sit down on a chair and listen to your teacher or some tapes telling you that the pen is on the table and the cat is near the box. Real life situations only await in real life, and that is where you have to go get them.
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