In the previous post, we were talking about the ....
'Our IELTS Course is only 12 hours' syndrome.
I made the point that these courses cannot possibly prepare you for the IELTS test. The natural question is, 'So why are these super-short courses offered?' Well, for example, a 12-hour course can be 'just' $12,000 NT, seemingly cheaper than a 40-hour course at $15,000. But the first course is extremely bad value (costing $1000/hour, making the teacher or the school a lot of money, right?). And it can waste your time, also. As always, the problem results from two factors: (1) money, and (2) the demand for a quick IELTS answers. People can make money by providing students with a quick and seemingly short answer - but this answer is an illusion.
So, remember, when comparing IELTS courses among schools, ...
- always calculate the cost per hour [not just the cost of the course], and ...
- remember that short courses are short for a reason, and ...
- keep in mind that the most important aspect is the TEACHER, and his/her qualifications and credentials, so check that out carefully.
So, let's look at my studio: 'Andrew's IELTS Studio' (AIS). At AIS, the 'total' preparation for all skills (Writing, Reading, Listening, and Speaking) consists of about 80 hours of direct teaching by the teacher, given in 25 individual lessons, each lasting 3 1/4 hours (and often longer). Each of the lessons is full of teaching, ideas, and practice, and the pace is fast, and delivered efficiently and effectively with very sophisticated PowerPoint programs.
There is another important point. There is homework in every lesson, consisting of reading (of passages and tips from the book), writing (9 pieces), and vocabulary exercises (from all the books), and independent research. The document below shows the minimum amount of classes needed (25), based on my assessment and my experience of teaching IELTS Preparation [and that's over 20 years of it!]. Click on the document for a closer look. Any IELTS Course shorter than this would leave you NOT prepared to the degree that I, as the teacher, expect - and I cannot do that. The point is, many people can!
So, don't fall for that trick, right?
Find the meaning of the underlined words, also repeated below.
- syndrome (n)
- illusion (n)
- to calculate(v)
- credentials (n)
- pace (n)
- sophisticated (adj)
Click on the above document for a closer look.