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Frequently Asked Questions

All about EC English

Your FAQs About Learning English Abroad

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  • Why should I choose to study abroad?

    You will get to know new people from interesting places, broaden your cultural horizons, build friendships, and make memories that last a lifetime. Our teachers have been trained to deliver fun and effective learning and you will have the opportunity to explore a new destination!

    The Orange Carpet Experience

    We are with you every step of the way!

    Your adventure will start with EC Online, before you leave home. We will share all the information about your chosen EC school and location with you, and upon arrival, either an EC representative at our residence or the host of your homestay will welcome you with open arms!

    Throughout your course, you will receive personalised learning as we believe that everyone learns at their own pace and in their own way. At the beginning and end of your course, you will take the EC Online Placement Test so you can clearly see your progress and that your progress has been externally validated.

    When all your hard work is over, we’ll present you with your certificate, photograph you with your new friends and celebrate all that you’ve accomplished.

    Learn more about The Orange Carpet Experience

  • What is MyEC?

    From the moment you book until you leave us, you will have access to MyEC, your personal toolkit which helps you manage your learning progress. MyEC is how you’ll test your current English level, track your progress, get insight into your strengths and weaknesses, gain access to online practice materials at your level. It also has loads of useful information to help you prepare for your trip and how to maximise your learning at EC schools.

    Learn more about MyEC

  • Do you offer any activities?

    With a combination of lessons and activities, your days are filled with opportunities to practise your English. Lessons provide you with direct learning, while excursions, free language workshops and activities allow you to learn vocabulary and practice new language in day-to-day life, offering you a balanced and thorough learning schedule.

    Free Language Workshops

    Add that extra finishing touch to your course with additional teacher-led workshops. Offered in all EC schools, this is your chance to add to your learning with extra language guidance outside the classroom. Free lessons occur at different times in each school so please check with your chosen destination. Click here to see a sample of the activity calendar from EC Brighton detailing activities in orange and language workshops in blue. Both are free of charge!

    See an example monthly social activity calendar from EC Brighton


  • What is included in the price?

    Your course, registration fee, accommodation (if selected), course material, welcome activity, certificate of attendance, WiFi, Orange Carpet Experience, MyEC Placement Test, English language activities and workshops, and social and cultural activities.

    For many of our schools, the price also includes airport transfer from and/or to the airport if you book a package with accommodation. Please check with your chosen school or booking agent.

  • Can I have the quotation in my local currency?

    You can have an estimate of the quotation expressed in your local currency by checking here:





  • What are the accommodation options?

    We offer host family or residence/student apartments. 

    The accommodation can be booked in the following categories:

    Room Only: There are no meal provisions and facilities for cooking are not available.

    Self-Catering: Students have access to a kitchen or kitchenette to prepare all their own meals.

    Bed & Breakfast (B&B): Breakfast is provided but students must make their own arrangements for other meals.

    Half-Board: Breakfast and dinner included. Students must make their own arrangements for lunch.

    Full-Board: Breakfast, lunch and dinner included.

    Read more about EC accommodation

  • Bathroom terminology

    En Suite: A bathroom that is connected to a bedroom, forming part of the same overall room. Both a single and a twin room can be en suite.

    Private Bathroom: A bathroom that is for the exclusive use of a student in a designated room that is not en suite. Applies to single rooms only.

    Semi-Private Bathroom: A bathroom that is designated for students in a specific room(s). A maximum of two students may share a semi-private bathroom.

    Shared Bathroom: A bathroom that is shared by three or more students. Only one student occupies the bathroom at any time.

    Communal Bathroom: A bathroom that is shared by multiple students, normally on the same residence floor. The large room will contain multiple toilet stalls and separate shower stalls. Multiple students may use this facility at the same time.

  • If I have chosen the shared-bedroom option, who will I be sharing with?

    You will be sharing with another, same-gender student of EC. When students are sharing rooms, we try our best to place students together from different countries or languages. Please note that during high season this cannot be guaranteed.

  • Can I keep staying at EC accommodation before/after my English course?

    The accommodation is only available for the duration of the course. Accommodation is usually booked from Saturday to Saturday.

  • How do you assign the host family?

    This is based on availability and any special requirements you might have. Please make sure that all your requests are expressed at the time of the booking.

  • Can I change my host family?

    The host family is assigned according to your requirements. After your arrival, we only change host families if there are some serious complaints.

  • When will I receive the profile of the family?

    You will receive the profile at least two weeks prior to your arrival date.


  • What is your teaching methodology?

    Our teaching methodology is how our teachers can guide you on your English language journey. Our Approach aims to put you, our students, at the centre of the learning process - The Communicative Approach with a twist!

    As well as incorporating all the key elements of the Communicative Approach – learner-centred classes, a focus on communication in real-life situations and an engaging classroom atmosphere, we have also implemented the latest research into learning. This ensures that each student is fully involved in their learning process – so you will:

    ✓ Know what you are learning.

    ✓ Know why you are learning it.

    ✓ Learn how you can use it in real life.

    ✓ Know what success will look like.

    ✓ Spend time learning how you can learn more effectively.

  • Maximum Support

    A team of at least two teachers will support you throughout your time learning English with EC.

    Through ongoing assessment designed to provide the feedback that drives your progress, your teachers will focus on your learning experience, monitoring your needs and offering the resources you need to make progress.

  • Measuring Satisfaction

    We are one of the only English schools using the highly regarded Net Promoter Score (NPS) system to gather feedback constantly and act swiftly to correct anything reported as being less than perfect.

  • Academic Team

    We have a dedicated Academic Development team made up of industry professionals including a published author and an educational technologist. We are continually researching the latest trends and methods to ensure you have the most effective learning experience.

    We also contribute regularly to international conferences, journals, and magazines.

  • Free Language Workshops

    In addition to the core components of your course, we offer teacher-led sessions which are available free of charge. These language workshops and leisure activities make your learning experience as broad and varied as possible.

  • What is the EC Promise?

    Here at EC, our aim is simple. We're here to help you set achievable goals and give you the support you need to reach them. We provide the knowledge of language learning, the learning environment and the social programme you need to make the most of your stay.

    Our unique EC Promise means that, if you follow your personalised learning programme, we promise that your English will improve.

  • What is an exam for international linguistic certification?

    It is a test that certifies your language level, and it is required by various universities and institutions around the world. There are several types, the best known of these are IELTS, TOEFL, FCE, CAE, CPE. We offer preparation courses for all these exams.

    Learn more about our IELTS exam course

    Learn more about our TOEFL exam course

    Learn more about our Cambridge exam course

    Learn more about our TOEIC course

  • How will I know if the course I chose is right for my level?

    The Standard, Semi-Intensive and Intensive courses are suitable for all levels, while the courses below require students to be of other minimum levels:

    English for Work: Pre-Intermediate level

    IELTS / TOEFL / TOEIC: Intermediate

    FCE: Intermediate

    CAE: Pre-Advanced

    CPE: Advanced

    All students take a level test on the first day of class or before arrival through our EC Online, after which they are placed in the class most appropriate to their level.

    You can also test your level here:

  • At the end of the course, will I be given a certificate?

    Yes, at the end of each course you will be given a certificate of participation, which states the dates you attended your course, the name of your course, and the language level achieved. It is recognised by the accreditations here.

    Kindly note that you need to attend a minimum of 80% of your course to be eligible to for your certificate.

    Intensive Academic Year students are awarded with an EC Diploma at the end of their course, and Semi-intensive or General Academic Year students receive an EC Certificate of Merit.

    You may also take an exit test on MyEC. This test is certified by and is accredited by the British Council.

  • I am a former student. Do I have to take the language level test again in case of new registration?

    It depends on how long it has been since you completed your course. If less than 3, months you should not have to re-test. If over 3 months you should re-test.

  • What is the difference between English For Work and Business English at London 30+ and Malta 30+?

    Please see the breakdown of both offerings below.

     English For Work

    Requires Pre-Intermediate level of English.

    Combination of 20 lessons of General English + 4 or 10 lessons of English For Work.

    Classes are max. 12, average 10 students.

    In General English, you will be learning the fundamental language skills from provided study materials.

    The example contents of English For Work lessons are: language of business meetings, making presentations, critical thinking and problem solving, conducting negotiations, writing reports, emails and letters.


    Business English

    Available for 30+ students only.

    Requires Upper-Intermediate level of English.

    20 lessons per week/15 hours.

    Mini Group with a maximum of 6 students.

    Example Contents: Communications, Crisis Management, Team Building, Finance, International Business, Business Ethics and CSR.

  • What focus lessons do you offer?

    Focus lessons vary from school to school, but they are mainly four and already included in the price:

    Speaking with Confidence
    Develop confidence while practicing conversation. Increase fluency and improve your speaking, listening and pronunciation skills.

    Real Life Listening
    Develop your ability to understand and respond in English in real-life situations. Expand your vocabulary by listening to conversations, music, videos, and podcasts.

    Expand Your Vocabulary
    Develop your vocabulary through topic-based lessons.

    Global Awareness
    Develop your critical thinking so you have a better understanding of what's happening in current events and world issues. Increase your awareness of different cultures and how communication can vary between them.

  • What is a Free Workshop?

    You will have the opportunity to keep on learning thanks to some free workshops we offer at our schools.

    Conversation Sessions
    You pick the topic and flex your conversation skills with other students from various classes, levels, and nationalities.

    Skills Clinics
    Your chance to pick up tips and pointers to master different language skills. Clinics are in grammar, pronunciation, writing and reading.

    Additional workshops are offered and adapted to meet the needs of the students at each school.

    Learn interesting facts and practise listening skills, note-taking, and summary writing.

    Exam Skills
    Practise and master key exam skills to help you attain a better score in your English language exams.

    Breaking News
    Team up with other students to discuss and debate the local and international issues of the day.

    Work/CV Clinic
    This clinic will help you develop the skills needed to apply and interview for jobs in English.

    Local Conversation Partners
    Match with a native speaker in the local area to meet and chat on a regular basis.

    Writing Clinic
    Practise your written English and develop a practical understanding of both formal and informal writing styles.

    Homework Club
    Meet with other students to help each other with homework and practise your English in a group setting.

    Improvisation Hour
    Improve your speaking skills while gaining confidence and having fun through improvisation activities.

    The 'Hood'
    Learn to speak like a local! Learn how literature, history and political movements have shaped the city you're studying in.

  • What does a typical lesson look like?

    Setting Clear Objectives
    Class begins with your teacher discussing the objective for the lesson with the class. You are encouraged to think about how what you learn today will help you in your life outside the class. For example, the objective for today is to be better able to order food in a restaurant.

    Language Development
    The class listens to an example of two people ordering food. Analyse this conversation with your partner, learning adjectives for describing food, how to ask questions about the menu politely and how to order food naturally. Throughout the lesson, work on your pronunciation and intonation.

    What Does Success Look Like?
    Before practising the conversation, you discuss what a successful conversation looks like and decide what you want to focus on in your practice. You may decide to focus on your natural pronunciation and intonation, while your partner chooses to focus on their use of adjectives.

    Practicing the Language
    Practise the language with your partner so they can give you feedback on your pronunciation, and so you can give them feedback on the adjectives they use. Based on this feedback, practise the conversation again.

    Getting Feedback
    Your teacher gives you feedback on how you’ve done. The lesson ends by returning to the lesson objective and discussing what you have learned and how you can use it outside the classroom.

    Real Life Practice
    After class you will go to Dinner Club on the social programme or go out with friends and order food in a real-life setting. During dinner, you discuss your experience with one friend from class. The next day, discuss the conversation in class with what you used from the lesson the day before.

  • Do you only offer English classes?

    Our schools are in English-speaking countries, so our main focus is on English. However, we also offer French classes at EC Montreal. Learn more at EC French

  • Do you offer courses online?

    Yes! EC Virtual brings English language learning to the comfort of your home using the innovative EC curriculum, and at a very competitive price. Learn more: EC Virtual

    EC Virtual's Frequently Asked Questions



  • Are there courses held at the weekends?

    All our courses are held Monday to Friday. Schools will be closed on public/bank holidays.

  • How long is a lesson?

    Standard: 20 lessons = 15 hours / week

    Semi-Intensive: 24 lessons = 18 hours / week

    Intensive: 30 lessons = 22.5 hours / week

  • School Timetables

    At EC we use a double banking timetable. This format alternates between morning and afternoon lessons, so that one day you will have class in the morning, and the following day it will be in the afternoon. The day after this, classes are in the morning again and so on.

    Please note, some of our schools are switching to a single banking timetable during the low seasons. This means lessons are scheduled only in the mornings. Please contact us for further information about your timetable.

  • When booking flights, when should I plan to arrive and depart?

    All our programs start on the Monday morning, so we recommend you arrive on the Saturday or Sunday before your start date. All our programs finish on Friday, however you do not have to leave the accommodation until noon on the Saturday, so we recommend you plan to depart on Saturday. 

    Extra nights are available upon request.


Need more information? 

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