Long term language courses in total immersion: Language studies abroad

The main pillar of the Gap Experience programmes is the ability to successfully communicate in the language of the country where you are taking your course. This first step is the primary goal of your long-term stay abroad. It also serves as a stepping-stone to further programmes presented in the following sections (work-study programmes, volunteer work, employment, etc.). Your future success is dependent upon your language abilities in the country of your stay.

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Trimester, semester or academic year
Fostering the ideal learning environment is something our partner schools take very seriously, which is why they feature benefits such as small classes, with roughly the same language level, as well as coming from a wide variety of nationalities. After the placement test given on day one, students are assigned classes according to their level. Students may move on to higher levels in accordance with their progress, providing increased motivation. The qualified, innovative teachers all hold degrees in language teaching and use modern, communication-based methods. Grammar is treated with a more practical approach, focused on communicating ideas, which your immersion experience will complement perfectly as you interact in everyday situations, putting into practise your new language skills. This allows you to pick up the language in a natural, participative manner throughout your stay.

A great way to finish up a longer language stay (a trimester or more) is with an internationally recognised language certificate. If you choose to pursue this, your course will only be slightly altered from the standard and intensive courses to include targeted exam practice. This also allows for you to surround yourself with peers who share a common goal. In today’s world, having official certificates is practically essential for your CV, and it also allows you to progress on to job training. These certificates are universally recognised reference points for your language skills and are highly desirable assets in the job world. There are set dates for these exams year round, and courses usually begin three months prior to the exam date. If you would like one of these exams to be the capstone of your experience, make sure to plan your language stay in accordance with the exam sessions.
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