When choosing a study academy, parents must take into account everything from the qualifications of the teaching staff to the ratio of students.
Does your child want to learn a new language? Do you need reinforcement with a school subject? Or are you older and want to take an exam or enroll in a course to complement your training? In those cases you will need to look for a good study academy.
In Spain there are hundreds of centers, but as in everything, some are better than others. Our advice is that you do not let yourself be guided by advertising, or by the price, or even by the comments of acquaintances. Just as you did when you chose your children’s school , when choosing a study academy you must take into account a series of characteristics.
CHOOSING THE BEST STUDY ACADEMY: WHAT YOU SHOULD LOOK FOR
First of all, you must make sure that the academy has the official accreditation that certifies its quality. See if you have the authorization of the City Council and the Government in sight.
Similarly, it is important to know what training and qualifications teachers have . In the case of English teachers, for example, do not be satisfied with being told that they are native speakers. In addition, they must have some type of accreditation such as TESOL or CELTA (Certificate in Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages), as they are the ones that certify that they are suitable for teaching.
They also have to understand Spanish very well so that they can interact with the students and answer all their questions.
Some study centers become so famous that their classes are overcrowded. In order for the teacher to attend to all the students correctly, the ideal number is between 8 and 12 students per class.
If your children only need the study academy as reinforcement, it is evident that they will not receive any degree or certificate. But in the case of languages or some training course, the validity of the title is very important.
We return to take an English academy as an example. In this case, the official degree must be recognized within the European Framework of Reference for Languages. Therefore, it is not worth that the diploma says “advanced level” or “basic”. You must specify one of the following levels:
- A1 and A2: Basic level
- B1 and B2: Independent
- C1 and C2: Proficient
Special attention must be paid to the methodology used in the classes. Are they all theoretical? Do theory and practice alternate? How long is each class? Is support material offered?
Another aspect that you can take into account is the quantity and quality of technological resources that the academy has. Are there enough devices for all students?
In line with the previous point, it goes without saying that the facilities must offer a minimum of hygiene and comfort. Air conditioning, heating, WiFi and cleaning are the minimums that must be covered.
We have put this variable last, since, sometimes, the difference between what a slightly more expensive study academy offers and what a slightly cheaper one provides is abysmal. We are talking about a few euros that can mean a great improvement in the education of your children .
You can always ask for several budgets (in writing, with the registration fee plus monthly payment separately and with taxes included) and balance the pros and cons to stay with the center that offers the best value for money.
In the case of courses that can be financed, take a good look at the interest rate that will be applied to you, the commissions that you will have to pay and the amortization period.
THE ADVANTAGES OFFERED BY A STUDY ACADEMY
Now that you know what you should look for when choosing a study academy for your children, we are going to list the advantages that these centers offer.
- Children get that extra support they need to improve their grades in school.
- A personalized follow-up of the students is carried out, in such a way that the subject that costs them the most will be reinforced.
- They teach children effective ways to make studying more productive.
- Children acquire daily study routines that will be very useful to them as they grow older.
- In general, in the academies, children are more motivated to do their homework and study than if they are at home.