Q1:As a Native American, and as a former Philippines school teacher, what do you think of effectiveness of Philippines English schools?
By now most people in the world are very familiar with studying English in the Philippines. When I first found the schools here and saw how they were doing things I was very amazed. I quickly understood why so many students were choosing to study in the Philippines rather than more traditional choices like Singapore, Canada, America, and Australia. There are very big differences and there’s no doubt in my mind that you can improve and get much more value for your investment by studying in the Philippines.
Q２:What are positive points of Philippines study in comparison to study in English language schools in Western countries such as US and U.K.
Many students choose to study in schools based in English speaking countries but are extremely disappointed with their expectations and results afterwards. The most obvious problems is that many of these schools don’t offer 1:1 classes. Instead, they offer larger group classes that really don’t give students enough time to practice and improve their fluency and confidence in the language. At the same time, these schools are often at least twice as expensive and the majority of these students just end up spending time with students who speak their native tongue. This is not the way to improve spoken English. The Philippines offers 1:1 classes supported by small group classes and this is truly the way to get more experience with the language and learn at a much faster pace.
Q3：What do you think of the unique man-to-man-class system in Philippines?
This is the biggest difference. This is what makes students who study in the Philippines improve at much faster rates than those in other Native English-speaking countries. In the end, if you are working one on one with a teacher and they are giving you all of their attention you have no place to go but up. It means that this is YOUR time and not divided into just a few minutes between a large group class.
Q4: What are negative points of Philippines study in comparison to study in English language schools in Western countries such as US and U.K.？
There are a few negative points but I’m not sure they are very negative. It’s true that if you study in another country you will be immersed completely in English. But I believe the Philippines offers a similar atmosphere. All menus, road signs, universities, and conversation between tourists and locals is all in English. I feel like the Philippines also offers a huge English atmosphere. There’s very much American culture entrenched in the Philippines and you can see it everywhere you go. ( I have a 5 year old son here in the Philippines and he ONLY speaks English. Because most people and most schools also use English he doesn’t have any problems at all)
Q5: Do you have any comments on so-called “peculiar accent” or “dialect” noticed by some Philippines English teachers.
Filipino teachers are not native teachers. With that said, the Philippines has a strong American culture historically. They grow up watching American movies and tv shows and this is the English that they have the most influence from. Also, the schools in the Philippines have very strict hiring standards when it comes to their Filipino teachers. In my experience, I never saw this as a big problem. I always tell my students, you will never sound exactly like me and that’s ok. For example, in America there are many different people who come from different places with different accents. The goal is to speak clear, understandable English and there’s no problem with that when learning from Filipino teachers.
Q6: Is there any English proficiency gap between them?
The native language in the Philippines is not English. They are not native speakers. That is not a bad thing. Filipinos are excellent with grammar and other subjects. Not just speaking. Some Filipinos speak English exactly like Americans. What I’ve noticed about the schools in the Philippines Is that they are very good at recognizing the strengths of their teachers. If you are learning speaking from a Filipino teacher you are definitely learning from a well-qualified teacher in that area.
Q7: How long does it take for English beginners to be able to speak a basic English conversation in Philippines language schools?
This is a very broad question but there is an easy answer. Beginners will always see the most improvement in the quickest amount of time. I was always so proud of my students who were almost 0 English-speakers and then after just a few weeks we were already able to have basic conversation. Each person is different but with the one on one attention you will see incredibly improvements in a short amount of time.
Q8: Is there any suggestion for better English educating and guiding system of Philippines English schools?
After working in this industry for many years now I think the system is already perfect. They say there’s always room for improvement and that’s why schools in the Philippines are always focusing on extended education for their teachers but overall the system Is wondeful. For a fraction of the cost of other countries students can come here and really see and feel improvement in less time. I think this is why there has been such a sharp decrease of the number of students studying in Australia, Canada, and America．The Philippines is the new leader of studying ESL and test-prep English