- 01. Finding The Right English Course In Auckland
- 02. Finding The Right English Course In Wellington
- 03. Finding The Right English Course In Hamilton
- 04. Where to find ESOL courses in Tauranga
- 05. Hiring A Private Tutor to Learn English Anywhere In New Zealand
- 06. Tips For Finding The Best English Teacher For You – Anywhere in New Zealand
English is the default language spoken in New Zealand, and for the most part, New Zealanders are monolingual. While Maori is the native language, it was almost extinct until an active revival of Te Reo began in the 1980s. This means that no matter where in New Zealand you are planning on moving to, you will need to know English – and you will need to learn Kiwi English.
Finding The Right English Course In Auckland
The majority of the population is found in Auckland. It is home to the most used International Airport in New Zealand and where most people will fly into, whether it becomes their final destination or not.
As such, there are a number of options for English language classes. Whether you want to learn basic English through an ESOL course, or something more focused like a vocational English class, Auckland has the most options available. You can also find a number of options to learn English online, either as one-to-one tuition or through a class. Some of your options include:
Tertiary English Language Class
English classes taken at university or polytechnic are usually not for complete beginners but may offer more formal education options. They do have the added advantage of providing relatively easy access to a wide range of English speakers through various clubs and facilities that can be accessed by all enrolled students.
Some of the options here will include Auckland Institute of Technology (UNITEC), Auckland University of Technology (AUT) and The University of Auckland. However, there is also a range of different language schools that will provide an introduction to Academic English.
Read about how to learn English online here.
Practice your English anywhere in New Zealand. Image by Joan Neesgaard from Pixabay
Language Schools For Basic To Advanced English Courses
When you are looking for an English Language School in Auckland, the most reputable schools will highlight that they are a Category 1 school. This means that they abide by specific criteria set by New Zealand's government agency responsible for overseeing the educational facility, NZQA.
Each school has pros and cons, so it is a case of working through each one to see if they have the criteria that would be a good fit for your needs. Some offer accommodation, some are vocation focused, others more towards academics, and some have a strong emphasis on integration with Kiwi culture.
Some of your options include Auckland English Academy (AEA), English Language Centre (ELC), New Zealand Language Centres (NZLC) and LSI Auckland, but this is by no means an exhaustive list.
Finding The Right English Course In Wellington
As New Zealand's capital, Wellington, of course, has a large group of multilingual people. One of the benefits of this is that the range of options for learning English in Wellington varies from very informal community-based ESOL conversation groups to very formal academic qualifications and English certifications.
Read this article to find out about ESOL tutor in Hamilton
ESOL that joins the Wellington Community Together
The ESOL classes with Community Education Centre Wellington are funded through Adult Continuing Education (ACE). There is likely an English conversation group near where you are living, which provides the opportunity to meet other locals as well.
Formal English Learning Options
The most obvious option would be Victoria University who have "English as a Second Language" as well as other ESOL courses. There are also options such as New Zealand Language Centres (NZLC), which focus more on helping students pass the International English Language Testing System (IELTS). NZLC also runs teacher training for TESOL, TESCOL or CELTA.
Finding The Right English Course In Hamilton
While not immediately the first city that may spring to mind when the topic of learning English comes up, being just down the road from Auckland makes the short trip a really great option to find the perfect ESOL course in Hamilton.
Like Auckland and Wellington, Hamilton is also home to a world-class university and polytechnic, both of which have excellent English language courses. For example, Waikato Institute of Technology (Wintec) offers a range of courses that are suitable for absolute beginners to more advanced English speakers, and most of their dedicated English classes lead to formal qualifications.
Hamilton is also fortunate enough to support a number of excellent private English language schools, some of which offer accommodation options or provide guidance to assist students into part-time work.
Here is how to find English class in Auckland
Where to find ESOL courses in Tauranga
The rapidly growing city of Tauranga has strong community groups that support English language learners, with free Christian based English courses run through Churches, ESOL schools and conversational groups – meaning that no matter what your English ability, you'll find a way to learn English in Tauranga.
Beyond the various group-based learning options, there are also a number of one-on-one tuition learning options as well; both online and in-person.
You can find out about English teachers in Wellington here.
Unlike the other major cities in New Zealand, Tauranga doesn't yet, have its own university. The population growth here has been sudden over the last decade, so while New Zealand's first University, The University of Otago, was founded in 1869, the country's newest Uni, the University of Waikato, wasn't opened until 1964. However, Massey University has established a satellite campus, as has Waikato University, and Auckland University has established a clinical campus-based out of Tauranga hospital. What all of this means is that although learning English in Tauranga doesn't have the official language courses that can be found in other major cities. You still have access to well-educated tutors who are able to work within your needs.
More formal English language qualifications are available through education facilities like Toi Ohomai. Here you'll find ESOL classes that are comparable to the Common European Framework of Reference (CEFR).
Hiring A Private Tutor to Learn English Anywhere In New Zealand
Although English is the dominant language of New Zealand, this doesn't mean that everyone who can speak English can also teach it. However, you will have access to a great range of people with various qualifications who can provide one-on-one tuition.
Look for an ESOL teacher with previous teaching experience, preferably one with experience teaching languages. While you can find English tutors through social media such as Facebook and WhatsApp, working through a more established service such as Superprof allows students to see reviews, feedback and have a little more security about who they are inviting into their home.
If you are enjoying living in small-town New Zealand, you may find your access to world-class English tutors more limited than if you were in a large city. However, you can still work with a private tutor to achieve your English language goals. New Zealanders are well known for their love of travel, so you may find that your Superprof English tutor is already travelling through your area on a regular basis. Otherwise, the majority of tutors will offer lessons through Zoom or your online communications tool of choice.
Beautiful Queenstown is a great backdrop for full immersion English. Image by Siggy Nowak from Pixabay
Tips For Finding The Best English Teacher For You – Anywhere in New Zealand
With so many options available for you to choose from, how do you choose where you should go? Many of the options are either pre-paid with Immigration New Zealand before arrival or are free to New Zealand citizens and residents, so what should your criteria be?
While qualifications are important, private English classes in New Zealand aren't required to be taught by registered teachers. This also applies to ESOL tutors. However, most do have ESOL qualifications, such as:
- Cambridge Certificate in English Language Teaching for Adults (CELTA)
- Certificate in TESOL
- Cambridge Diploma in English Language Teaching for Adults (DELTA)
In order to teach English within the New Zealand education system, whether at primary or high school, ESOL teachers must first be qualified teachers who are registered with the NZ Teaching Council. Teachers also need to have additional qualifications such as:
- a graduate or postgraduate certificate or diploma in Teaching of English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL) or second-language teaching.
- a Master's degree in TESOL, second-language teaching or applied linguistics
What is your learning style? Do you prefer to be actively learning, or would you rather see someone else complete a task, and you then copy? Do you need to be able to watch someone in person to understand their body language and gestures? Do you find it easier to be the centre of focused attention, or does the comradery of learning with others who are at the same level appeal more?
While a dedicated student can, and will, learn under almost any circumstances, finding the right environment makes language learning significantly easier. One of the advantages of learning English through a class is that you are provided with an opportunity to be supported by people in the same position and level as you.
However, if you have concerns about navigating your new city to reach a class, have time constraints, or have religious restraints, in-home tuition is usually a better option. Private tuition can also be used to augment your group conversation classes, allowing you to focus on exactly what you want to learn.
Sometimes it may be a case of trial and error. Try starting with a class at the beginner level, move to private tuition, and then join a conversational community group once your English skills are at a comfortable level. Learning English in New Zealand isn't just about mastering the language; it's a chance to enjoy learning about the Kiwi culture too.
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