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Language Schools for Expats in New Zealand

Submitted: October 2014

There are many English language schools in New Zealand and they are the main subject of this article. However it would be impossible not to mention Te Reo Māori (literally 'the language Maori'), which is spoken by about 150,000 people in the country and is one of three official languages of New Zealand. You are unlikely to find a situation where you will actually need to be able to speak Māori: all Māori speakers are almost certain to be fluent in English. However many New Zealanders slip a little Māori into their speech from time to time, so if you are going to be staying in New Zealand for an extended period, it might be nice to learn a little, even if it is only kia ora (‘hello’), mōrena (‘good morning’) and hei konā rā (‘goodbye’). If you want to learn some Māori, there is some information here.

If you want or need to learn English, the best way to jump-start the learning process is to spend some time back at school. This might involve attending evening classes after work; alternatively, you could attend a full time course. There are many such courses which run over the summer months in some beautiful locations in New Zealand. These also give you the opportunity to learn about New Zealand culture and do some sight-seeing at the same time. There is an excellent search engine for language schools here with filters which allow you to search by location and qualification, whether it is pilot’s English or university level preparation you are looking for.  It also allows you to find a school with snowboarding or skiing nearby, if that is of interest to you.

If you are looking for a qualification to show that you are proficient in English, you can attend any one of the following courses in New Zealand:

If you are intending to study for a course that is taught in English, you may find that one of these qualifications will be required for admission. Even if you do not particularly want any of the qualifications listed above, you can search for schools which provide them, as this may give you more confidence regarding the quality of the tuition at the school.

Choosing the right school for you depends on what you want to get out of it. If you are interested in more than just class-based learning, many schools provide sight-seeing tours, which not only help with your language development, but also give you more information regarding what you are looking at than you would get from a guide book.

Generally schools will run classes for students of all levels of ability, ranging from total beginners to accomplished speakers taking refresher courses. You will normally be assessed on arrival to see which class would be suitable, but you should always confirm that if you find yourself in a class that does not suit your ability, you can move freely into a more suitable class.

There are many different factors involved in the final choice of school. These include:

Many schools have their own websites, which give detailed information of courses offered.

 

 

 




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