In this blog I want to talk about the promises that Language Schools make that they are unable to deliver.

Riding the streets of Ho Chi Minh City I see banners attached to the walls of chain language schools stating IELTS 8.5,  IELTS 8.0 Guaranteed and all I can do is shake my head in utter disbelief.

No school can guarantee an IELTS score.  It cannot be bought or bargained for.  No school should make such guarantee claims.  Next, the effectiveness of the course is based on two primary points. Firstly, does the school provided syllabus allow teachers the flexibility to teach intensive skills. Secondly, do the teachers have at minimum 4 years experience teaching IELTS.

From my experience with language schools the syllabus is provided and teachers are expected to finish each lesson on time.  The problem with this approach is that it does not adequately provide students with the proper training or allow time to absorb important skill sets related to the exam.   In other words, the course is taught at an uncomfortably rapid and haphazard pace.  I will add that in my 6 years of teaching IELTS in Viet Nam that not one school teaches to the test descriptors.  And I will tell you unequivocally that understanding them is paramount to your success on the exam.

I also want to be clear by saying there are some very good teachers teaching IELTS at the various HCMC schools. However the vast majority lack the knowledge, passion and commitment, as they are only passing through the country.  As a result, it is by pure chance that you will get a good teacher when enrolling in a language school.

This is especially true at the larger more popular centers, as they often hire just to fill a demand for native speaking teachers.  So, do you really want to take that chance.

To make matters enough worse some high profile language schools have a Vietnamese teacher teaching writing and reading while the native English speaking teacher teaches speaking and listening.  This method is unconscionable and not in your best interest.

Non-native teachers do not have a strong command of the language. They lack the naturalness, formation and the ease of vocabulary and delivery.  They do not have a good grasp of idioms and colloquialisms, and while they can create a sentence, struggle with paragraphing and structure. These are aspects of the language that are inherent to native speakers and cannot be taught based on grammar rules.

Furthermore, just because you are a native English speaker does not mean that you can teach an English language proficiency test preparation course. The fact of the matter is, it takes years of dedicated teaching experience to fully understand IELTS,  including how to teach to the exam, and equally important,  how the scoring process works.

Will Academy makes only this guarantee. I will teach you everything that you need to achieve a very high band score on the exam, while building speaking and writing confidence, all awhile teaching to the descriptors.

You are serious about IELTS because you need a 6.5 or 7.0 or even higher.   Place your trust in Will Academy and I will help you achieve your goal of studying abroad.


William Leach