Education in New York City

Language courses in New York City

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Professional passport or personal interest, studying a language is as much an asset as a necessity for any student or international traveller. Whether you decide to study a language in its original country, or you decide to improve your English closer to home, you will have several possibilities as described below:

English Immersion

For young people who take advantage of the school holidays to improve their foreign language skills, English immersion courses last for a few weeks. They are usually hosted by a local family with whom you board. Language courses in small groups usually include organised cultural activites and visits. This will cost you a minimum of $800/week (2 weeks stays are standard).

Sprachcaffe New York is a language school that offers individual or collective courses. The Sprachcaffe school is located in the centre of Manhattan in 5th Avenue, close to the prestigious Carnegie Hall and Hard Rock Cafe, and only 3 blocks from Central Park. Sprachcaffe New York offers standard courses (4 lessons a day) or intensive courses (6 lessons a day). Prices range from $1270 to $1550 for 2 weeks, according to the type of accommodation you choose.

Ofacil gives 13 to 18 years olds the chance to board with a family in Riverdale, New York. This costs 2050€ for 15 days and 3990€ for 1 month. For those over 18 years of age, the price is 1415€ to 3110€ (depending on whether you choose semi-intensive or intensive) for 2 to 4 weeks.

Intensive Courses

There are several language schools offering instensive courses in New York, some of which are mentioned below. When you choose a school, you will first have to take a test in order to be put into the right lclass for your level of English. This will be done at registration. Depending on the institution, prices range between $30 and $150 per hour according to the programme you choose.

A less expensive option (but one with a good reputation nonetheless) would be ZONI, below the Empire State Building and Macy's. Zoni is one of the world leaders in international language education. and runs several schools in the NY metropolis area with students coming from all over the world. They run intensive courses for TOEFL from Monday to Friday, with classes lasting 2 hours each, until 10pm. The cost of each cost is as follows :

  • Premium Intensive : From $390 for 2 weeks, 20 hours a week TOEFL
  • Intensive : From $540 for 4 weeks, 20 hours a week

ELS Language Centers have taught English for over 40 years. You can join thousands of students from more than 140 countries who have learned English and reached their personal and professional goals. Their intensive and semi-intensive programmes are certified by the Accrediting Council for Continuing Education & Training (ACCET / - a national organization for accredition supported by the American Secretary for Education. Semi-intensive courses of 20 lessons per week (4 weeks per session) cost $995 and intensive courses of 30 lessons per week (4 weeks per session) cost $1,395

ALCC specialises in teaching English as a Foreign Language (ESL) and in preparing for the TOEFL, and has done so for more than 27 years.

The Rennert Bilingual Institute, located in the heart of Manhattan, is close to all the best known places in New York: the lights of Times Square, shows in the Lincoln Center, the international diplomacy of the UNO, Broadway theatres, quiet Central Park, the night life of the East Village, cafes of Greenwich Village, shops in Soho and TriBeCa, and that's without even mentioning the world cuisine available at the multitude of restaurants. Transport is obviously quick and convenient. Prices vary from $199 to $820 a week (20 or 30 hours) depending on your choice. You can also prepare for the TOEFL exam or the Cambridge First Certificate. Rennert Bilingual offers an accommodation service with a local family or a youth hostel.

LSI New York is located in Manahttan on the campus of the Metropolitan College of New York (MCNY), in the heart of Soho and close to the business centre. LSI offers standard courses of 20 lessons a week. This deals with all the key points of the language, i.e. pronounciation, grammar and vocabulary, giving you the tools necessary for the practice of the 4 main areas of a language (listening, writing, talking and reading). They also offer intensive standard courses of 30 lessons a week. This course is particularly designed for people who want to study intensively and discover the language and the country from the inside. Students who choose this option follow a standard course in the morning that they enhance with another course in the afternoon. LSI also offers individual courses tailored to your individual needs, as well as group courses and living with a family who will converse with you. LSI prepares students for the TOEFL and Cambridge certificates.

Hunter College [] & Baruch College [] also teach ESL courses (English as a Second Language) and TOEFL (Test of English as a Foreign Language).

These colleges, like most of the colleges and institiutions mentioned, are authorised by the INS (American service for Immigration) to submit the I-20 form necessary to obtain the F1 visa for students.

Focus On Career organises ESL courses (English as a Second Language) in small groups. Thanks to this unique method, you can improve your English in a welcoming environment under the guidence of a teacher with over 30 years teaching experience. This costs $525 for 10 sessions of 2 hours each.

Focus on Career also allows you to improve your English using hypnosis! With a small group of 4 to 6 people you can talk about your difficulties to a teacher. The price is $150 for 3 sessions.

Individual courses

Individual courses are offered by some of the organisation mentioned above.

Focus on Career offers a programme with English conversation over the phone. Beginners, Intermediate or Advanced. Lessons are 30 minutes on the phone, and a package of 6 lessons costs $180 (or $300 for 10 lessons with the 11th lesson for free). In addition it offers correspondence courses in English with 3 emails per week for 1 month; each email being a 1 page letter on a subject determined in advance with the teacher according to your level. The price for this is $99.



The Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) has been the reference point for more than 40 years. Each year nearly 800 000 candidates around the world register for the exam and test their skills in in writing, listening and reading in the English language .

The test has several sections:

  • Listening and understanding
  • Grammar
  • Reading
  • Writing

Your score will be given in a number of points for each section. In several institutions a minimum of 500 points for the test is on paper and 250 is on computer.

Preparing the TOEFL is recommended for students with an advanced level in English and who want to follow university courses. The TOEFL is demanded by all American universities for foreign students who want to study in the USA. The preparatory course for the TOEFL exam includes a test to assess the level of the student and his/her ability to follow the programme.

Cambridge (ESOL)

English for Speakers of Other Languages Cambridge University (ESOL) is taken by 1.5 million people each year in more than 135 countries. This exam allows you to become a teacher of English and is internationally recognised.

For more information please go to the official website :

Update 16/09/2007


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