Learn English

Are online or in-person English classes better?

English classes

Currently, and as a result of the covid-19 crisis, the offer of online classes has skyrocketed. Now, because of this, (although we had seen it previously to a lesser extent), we find that many academies offer their English classes in this modality or in person modality. Although both are valid and practical depending on various circumstances, we are going to do an analysis to see which is more recommended or if both are depending on the student's needs.

Points to take into account to choose the modality that best suits you in your English course

There are a series of factors to take into account when choosing whether you prefer your English classes in person or online, such as time, price, effectiveness, etc. We summarize them below:

  1. Time you have for your classes

In a society that lives stressed and in a hurry, time is something extremely valuable that should not be wasted under any circumstances. That is why many people choose the online modality, since you invest less time in getting home, turning on the computer, and taking your English class, than in having to travel to an English academy. Let's remember that there are people who decide to learn the language as adults, having different work schedules, children, etc., and they cannot be investing extra time in going to a English academy in Cartagena or wherever.

2. Comfort when receiving classes

If we can choose between giving a class in our pajamas at home and with a coffee on the side if you feel like it, or giving it in an academy, I think most of us will choose online classes again. Above all, taking into account that the chairs in schools, institutes, academies, etc., are not exactly comfortable.

3. Price of English classes

This depends a lot on the English academy, whether the teacher who teaches the class is native or not, and the hours of class you teach per week. A lesson with a private native English teacher will cost more or less €15 or €20 per hour, while in an academy you will pay about €25 per hour for a class of these characteristics, since the academy has to take care of the expenses of the premises, energy and equipment.

4. Learning quality

Here there is a diversity of opinions on the matter, since there are teachers who prefer the English classes in person (the vast majority) and others who prefer them online.

There are professionals who affirm that taking the student out of their “comfort zone” is very useful so that they do not feel supported by the fact of being in their country, with people who speak their language and where the foreigner is the teacher. The student goes from speaking in Spanish to “being forced” to speak in English, which strengthens their ability to communicate orally.

On the other hand, practically all teachers agree that one of the fundamental bases of learning is the ability to interact and express oneself with others. In this sense, Face-to-face classes are very suitable for leaving shame aside of having a conversation in English with another person and that insecurity that most people have when we have to do it. Through practice and effort, everything is achieved.

Yes, it is true that having a group online English class has the advantage that, in effect, Spanish is not spoken because the students cannot maintain conversations with each other, but it can encourage confusion and lack of concentration when having more distractions at your fingertips.

5. Screen time

We spend more and more time in front of a screen and this is a reality. This leads to vision problems, back problems, sleep disturbances and much more. One of the few areas of our lives that was not “contaminated” excessively by technology was teaching. But as a result of the pandemic, English classes and all other subjects began to be given entirely online.

For health reasons, it is not healthy to spend so much time in front of a screen, and in this case it is the in-person English classes that win the battle. It is exhausting to spend too much time in front of the screen, because there comes a point where our brain collapses and we do not learn in the same way, it is more difficult for us.

6. Contact with the teacher

Although this is something very general and there are teachers of all types and in all areas, it is true that having direct and close contact with your teacher is much more effective when it comes to asking questions and learning in general. Having a professional nearby with whom you can express your doubts, your concerns with the language and being close to him is something other than necessary, very successful in terms of the student's predisposition. Teaching an online class, where communication with the teacher is not so fluid, where sometimes we feel inhibited by being in front of a camera in front of our classmates, is not the same as having him in front of him and having him ask you or give you confidence and the comfort of speaking and expressing yourself freely.

So, in conclusion, there is no type of English class that is better than another; The ideal would be to combine them, but when choosing one or the other, many factors come into play that make online English classes the most appropriate for some people, due to their pace of life, which is less flexible for a face-to-face modality, or because any personal circumstance, and for others, face-to-face is better due to the closeness and contact with both the teacher and classmates with whom they can practice the language.