Since 1989 we have designed and delivered tailor-made language courses throughout the world in English and other languages. We have over twenty-five years’ experience, four quality awards from UK Trade and Investment, certification to ISO 9001 and accreditation by The British Council, so you can be sure that you’ll be working with one of the best providers of global language training in the world.
Our language training courses are
- Effective – Our carefully selected experienced native-speaker trainers are qualified teachers who will make your learning effective, quick and enjoyable.
- Flexible – Choice of locations and flexible schedule: you can study at our well-equipped language centre in the picturesque town of Twyford (only an hour from Heathrow airport), at your company’s premises or in the comfort of your own home. Lessons can take place at any time to suit you.
- Relevant – We will establish your requirements by phone at a training needs analysis interview, following which we’ll send you a course specification, carefully designed with your objectives in mind. Your course will be completely personalised to your needs, so no time will be wasted.
Our teaching methodology
Our founder and Director of Training Services, Bob Robertson, has a PGCE* in languages and worked for 10 years in teacher training and language course design before founding Robertson Languages in 1989. The two senior managers in the Training Department have CELTA* and DELTA* qualifications. Our teachers and course managers receive professional development training to keep up to date with current practices.
Robertson Languages has clear and well-tried methods for language teaching that have stood the test of time and have won us national awards. Our guiding principles are that learning must be learner-centred, practical and useful. We also believe that there are three aspects to learning a language: learning facts (eg words, verb endings, genders, etc), understanding how the language works (eg when to use which tense, what is formal or informal language) and developing the skill to use it to communicate effectively in a real situation.
To achieve these ends we use the following methods in ways that are sensitive to trainees’ learning styles:
The Communicative Method:
The course content is based around what the learner needs or wants to communicate in the settings and situations that he finds himself in. This is why we conduct a Training Needs Analysis to establish the functions (what you want to achieve), the notions (what you want to talk about) the settings (the circumstances in which you will be communicating) and the level (the standard of competence you wish to achieve). We do this by finding out:
- Why you want to communicate
e.g. to make sales, chair meetings, give presentations, go on business trips, relocate to another country
- How you want to communicate
e.g. verbally (face-to-face or by telephone?), writing (emails or reports?), reading
- Who you want to communicate with
e.g. clients, colleagues, suppliers, neighbours, friends
- When you want to communicate
e.g. socially or at work, in the office or entertaining clients
- What you want to talk about
e.g. sales, finance, HR issues, customer care or social interaction
- How correctly you want to communicate
e.g. at natural speed or are you happy to speak more slowly? How concerned are you about grammatical correctness that does not affect how well people understand you?
Once we have answers to these questions, we design teaching materials and classroom activities that teach you the vocabulary and grammar that you need to say what you want in the situations that you find yourself in. We therefore use role plays and practical exercises in the classroom and for self-study between lessons.
The Direct Method:
By this method, the target language (i.e. the language the trainee wishes to learn) is used in the classroom, and the learner learns from what he hears around him even if he does not understand everything, in the same way that a child learns his mother tongue. This is the assumption on which Immersion Training is based and why learning in-country can faster than learning at home – or why classroom learning is more effective than self-study alone. The weakness in this method is that it does not give sufficient credit for learning skills that most adults have acquired, and can underestimate the sense of bewilderment that may be felt by a beginner. Robertson Languages therefore uses this method in a sensitive and pragmatic way, using the foreign language in the classroom as much as possible without discouraging the learner or wasting time. In practice this is a difficult balancing act that requires considerable skill and experience from the teacher, which is why our trainers have teaching qualifications. In our view, just being a native speaker does not mean you can teach.
Using the direct method means that we do not teach in an academic way about the language but give you practical skills in how to use and understand the language in real situations. We therefore use the latest technology to bring the language to life in the classroom. We also recognise that language is spoken in a cultural framework, so we include tips and information about cultural matters – such as manners, habits and customs – in our lessons.
For a free training needs analysis or to discuss your requirements please contact us on +44 118 934 6000 or fill in our contact form.
WHAT OUR CLIENTS ARE SAYING
When quality and results matters, talk to us in any language.
Gillian made me feel very comfortable at the same time as challenging my existing level of French. She helped me realise that I remember much more that I thought possible and she has given me great enthusiasm for the future!
I wanted to say thanks to Robertson Languages for good classes of Portuguese I had. They are helping me a lot especially now when I am in Brazil.
I need to tell you guys, your Arabic trainer is a wonderful teacher. I think the best I’ve ever had. He really gives 100 percent every lesson. Just wanted to let you know he’s doing a great job!