Learning for fun!
The International Society has a varied programme of classes that run throughout the year including the summer months. Our classes are fun, friendly and informal and are led by our amazing team of dedicated volunteer teachers. Click on the links below to see the current timetable of classes; read about our class policy and language levels or find out more about how to get involved as a volunteer teacher.
How do I register?
You can either register online, or you can drop into our office on Oxford Road and register there. Please be aware that our more popular classes can fill up very quickly so make sure to register as early as you can to avoid disappointment.
When Can I Register?
As soon as the details of a class are confirmed with the volunteer teacher, we will post them online and you will be able to register. Online registration will generally close when the first lesson starts; some classes will always be open for registration; please get in touch to clarify.
If online registration has closed with the first lesson, and you would still like to register, you will need to come into our office on Oxford Road where we may be able to allow you to register depending on space in the class and the preference of the teacher.
Where do the classes take place?
All our classes take place in our offices at Oxford Road. There is a map and a complete address on the contact info page. There are eight rooms around the building that we use for the classes; when you arrive for your first lesson there will be a noticeboard explaining which room your class is in.
How Much Does It Cost?
From September 2015, classes will cost £45 for members and £55 for non-members; this is the standard price for ten weeks of lessons, with one lesson of an hour and a half per week.
Some classes may have more (or less) lessons and the price would be increased or decreased to reflect that. The full payment must be made in order to join a class.
Can I try a class? (no!)
You must register in full for a class before you are able to attend. It is extremely disruptive for both students and teachers if people try to attend lessons without registering first. Our volunteer teachers will require students to show a confirmation and photo ID so anyone found trying to attend lessons without registering will be removed from the class and may be banned from attending classes at the International Society in the future.
How old do I have to be?
Our classes are strictly for adults (over-18’s) only. Unfortunately we are unable to provide classes for younger students.
Can I change class?
If you find that the class you have joined is not of a suitable level or you find that you can no longer attend for some reason, you can change to another class providing there is an available space in the class you’d like to move to.
Do I get a qualification?
We are not an accredited language school and cannot provide a formal qualification. However we are very happy to provide you with an official letter of attendance from the International Society.
Who are the teachers?
All of the language teachers at the International Society are volunteers. In many cases they have qualifications and/or experience as a teacher but also many may be teaching for the first time in order to gain experience. Please be supportive of the teachers as they are giving their time and energy for free.
How Do Refunds Work?
You can only claim a refund up to 24 hours after your second lesson. This enables you to attend two lessons and see if the class is suitable for you. You will get back the registration fee minus the cost of the class/es that have already taken place.
Also, if we have been unable to provide all the lessons paid for (due to teachers being ill for example) we will also refund you the cost of these lessons. We will generally try to rearrange any missed lessons but please note that rearranged lessons may not take place at the original day/time or within the original planned schedule.
We will notify you when refunds are available but you will be responsible for them being claimed. Refunds (and registrations) are not transferable to pay for another class or another service at the Society nor can they be transferred from one term to the next. Please note that all refunds are subject to a £1 admin charge.
Any more questions?
What's my level?
We use the European Language Levels as a rough guide to help you self-select your class. Unfortunately with so many different languages available we are unable to offer a testing system. Once you’ve joined a class, if you feel that you need a higher or lower level, then get in touch and we can move you to a more suitable class (if one is available).
(equivalent to European Language Level A1)
The student has had none or little contact with the language though the student might be familiar with a few words, expressions and grammar basics.
(equivalent to European Language Level A2)
Can understand and use familiar everyday expressions and very basic phrases aimed at the satisfaction of needs of a concrete type. Can introduce him/herself and others and can ask and answer questions about personal details such as where he/she lives, people he/she knows and things he/she has. Can interact in a simple way provided the other person talks slowly and clearly and is prepared to help.
(equivalent to European Language Level B1)
Can understand sentences and frequently used expressions related to areas of most immediate relevance (e.g. very basic personal and family information, shopping, local geography, employment). Can communicate in simple and routine tasks requiring a simple and direct exchange of information on familiar and routine matters. Can describe in simple terms aspects of his/her background, immediate environment and matters in areas of immediate need.
(equivalent to European Language Level B2)
Can understand the main points of clear standard input on familiar matters regularly encountered in work, school, leisure, etc. Can deal with most situations likely to arise whilst travelling in an area where the language is spoken. Can produce simple connected text on topics which are familiar or of personal interest. Can describe experiences and events, dreams, hopes & ambitions and briefly give reasons and explanations for opinions and plans.
(equivalent to European Language Level C1)
Can understand the main ideas of complex text on both concrete and abstract topics, including technical discussions in his/her field of specialisation. Can interact with a degree of fluency and spontaneity that makes regular interaction with native speakers quite possible without strain for either party.
Can produce clear, detailed text on a wide range of subjects and explain a viewpoint on a topical issue giving the advantages and disadvantages of various options.
(equivalent to European Language Level C2)
Can understand a wide range of demanding, longer texts, and recognise implicit meaning. Can express him/herself fluently and spontaneously without much obvious searching for expressions. Can use language flexibly and effectively for social, academic and professional purposes. Can produce clear, well-structured, detailed text on complex subjects, showing controlled use of organisational patterns, connectors and cohesive devices.
The International Society has up to 70 volunteer teachers teaching classes at any one time; and 100’s over the course of a year. Often teachers teach with us for many years. Our teachers are students at the universities in Greater Manchester who want to share something of their language and culture and get some teaching experience; some are teachers who are recently qualified and are looking for some practical experience and some are qualified teachers with years of experience.
You will be responsible for the content of the lessons that you teach and for checking the register and ID of your students. In return for teaching a class at the Society you can attend the other classes for free. In addition, there are teacher meetings, feedback sessions and free teaching training workshops where you can meet the other teachers, share experiences and learn something new.
We welcome applications to teach and recruit new teachers throughout the year.
To volunteer click the button and complete the volunteer form.
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William Kay House
327 Oxford Road
51 YEARS YOUNG
The International Society has been promoting international friendship and celebrating cultural diversity since 1966.
© International Society 2017