The sprawling Southern California city of Los Angeles is better known as the epicentre of America’s film and television industry than for its educational institutions. Yet beyond its iconic landmarks and places of interest, such as the Hollywood sign, the Walk of Fame and Paramount Pictures studios, LA is also a popular base for those wanting to learn English.
There are many excellent reasons for choosing Los Angeles as your place of language learning, not least the city’s buzzing nightlife which offers plenty of extra-curricular entertainment. And while LA’s wide range of language schools may be overshadowed by its more glitzy attractions, many nonetheless come with an impressive reputation for excellence. We’ve picked out 5 of the best English Language schools that the city has to offer.
POLY Languages Institute
Established in 1970, POLY Languages Institute is one of California’s best regarded language schools. Its Los Angeles location offers numerous courses catering for a wide range of student needs, including ESL courses, General English courses, Business English, a TOEFL preparation program and private instruction. The school’s curriculum is suited for both short-term and long-term visitors, with a total of 12 terms, each 4 weeks long. Intensive Programs involve 28 hours per week, semi-intensive programs 20 hours per week, and non-intensive programs 8 hours per week. Whichever program a student joins, these terms remain the same. As for learning facilities, the school has 8 classrooms and a computer lab. There’s also a dedicated student accommodation service as well as regular events designed to encourage students to meet and socialise.
A F International College
Situated on Wilshire Boulevard, one of Los Angeles’ most famous avenues and in many ways its symbolic spine, A F International College places students at the heart of city life. The school offers five levels of ESL courses to help you develop your English at your own pace, with classes incorporating practical conversation skills designed to make daily activities and communication easier. For students keen to improve specific areas of their language skills, there are a number of focused courses including English for Professionals, English for Communication, English Plus Fun and Accent Reduction. The school also offers tutoring, student job advice and a dedicated housing service which helps students find their preferred type of accommodation.
Boasting an enviable location just around the corner from the Walk of Fame, together with a suitably buzzing vibe in keeping with its surroundings, this distinguished language institution offers numerous pre-sessional English courses. Among them are Intensive Courses, English Plus Film, Compact Courses and Vacation Courses, many of which cater for students coming to Los Angeles on a short-term basis. For those seeking somewhere to live during their stay, the school also offers some on campus residential accommodation, as well as excellent additional residential housing that’s within easy reach of the campus.
California Language School
Centrally positioned in the Koreatown area of Los Angeles, next to the Wilshire & Vermont Metro Station and surrounded by great restaurants & cafes, the California Language School combines an impressive location with an exceptional learning environment. The school offers Beginner, Intermediate, and Advanced ESL classes, as well as TOEFL preparatory classes. For students planning a shorter stay in LA who want to learn English for a month or two, it’s very easy to enroll and the tuition is only $500 per month, on a month-to-month basis. Providing maximum flexibility, students can choose between daytime or evening classes – ideal for those wishing to either work or explore LA during the day – and if you wake up late you can simply attend an evening class instead. As for amenities, the school boasts the very latest audio and video equipment, with computers, speakers, headsets with microphone, LCD monitors, and large flat screen TV’s in every classroom. Frequent social activities including monthly field trips and student parties take place, too.
Build My English
With a strong focus on speaking English during classes and personal attention for every student – the latter achieved in part through keeping classes small – Build My English has become a highly regarded language school since its creation in 2012. Located in the San Fernando Valley, a 20-minute drive northwest of central LA, the school offers several courses catering for all abilities. Classes are kept to between 3 and 10 students, and instead of grammar monopolising the curriculum lessons heavily revolve around talking and interacting with teachers and each other.