Frequently asked Questions – for students

Study English in the UK - Frequently asked Questions for students

Staying with a tutor and having private tuition is the best way to learn a language.  The Language List is only for students of 18 years of age or older.  With The Language List you can choose the tutor that suits you best, from a wide selection of qualified teachers.  Some tutors allow you to bring your partner or a friend.  All your meals are provided and you will be looked after and treated as one of the family.  You will be able to use the tutor’s washing machine.

By using the language list, you are agreeing to our Terms and Conditions.

Getting started - finding a tutor

How do I search for tutors?

You can browse our tutors on the our tutor page .  Each tutor has a detailed profile.  You can filter your results using the options on the left hand column (e.g. by location or interests, or if they have pets in the house).

Once you find a tutor you like, fill out a CONTACT THIS TUTOR form.  We will put you in touch with the tutor.  You can then ask them any questions.

Could you recommend a tutor for me?

If you feel there is too much choice, we can recommend a tutor for you. If you want to do this, fill out a “RECOMMEND A TUTOR FOR ME” form and we will help.

 

How do I know if a tutor is available?

Fill out a booking enquiry.  This does not commit you.  The form will be sent to the tutor, and they can answer any questions you have.  Filling out the form will also show you the total cost of your homestay.

Some tutors set a minimum and a maximum time that they will host a student.  If you want to stay for several weeks, you may need to divide your stay between more than one tutor.

Your Account

What is my account?

Your account is where your tutor profile information, contact details, calendar, communications and bank details are held.  You have access to this at all times.  You can have an account even if your listing as a tutor is not live.

How can I cancel my account?

You can request to de-list at any time, although you must honour the bookings you have already accepted or cancel them.  If you cancel them, you may incur a cancellation fee, depending on the reason for your cancellation.  See the Terms and Conditions – cancellations.

Your bookings

How do I make a booking?

On the Booking Enquiry on the tutor’s profile enter how many hours tuition you want per day, and the dates you want to stay then click “CHECK AVAILABILITY”.

If you want to make contact with the tutor before doing this, click the “CONTACT THIS TUTOR” button

You only have to pay when you make a booking.  You do not need to pay anything when you make a booking request.

How much time does a tutor have to respond to my booking request?

The tutor does not have to respond to you within a set time.  However we encourage tutors to respond quickly.  If you fell you have waited too long, you can send a booking request to another tutor.  If both tutors accept your booking request, you can choose which one you want to stay with.

Can I speak to a tutor before booking?

Yes you can.  Or you might prefer to make contact by e-mail.

When do I pay for my homestay?

You must pay the entire fee to confirm the booking.

Can I cancel a booking request?

Yes.  If you change your mind and decide to go with a different tutor, or to go at a different time, you can cancel the request.

What happens if my booking request is declined (if the tutor says “no”)?

If your booking request is declined, you can request tuition from another tutor.

Can I make booking requests to more than one tutor?

Yes, there is nothing to stop you sending booking requests to more than one tutor for the same dates.  If they both say yes, you can choose which one you want to stay with.  Also, you may want to stay with more than one tutor when you are in the UK. The system will not allow you to “double book” yourself (this means to pay to stay with two tutors at the same time).

Will I be charged if my booking request isn’t accepted by the tutor?

No.  The booking fee is only charged when you confirm a booking.

Can I make changes to a confirmed booking?

If you need to change the date of your visit, you must contact your tutor.  If they can accept the change then they will contact us.  If your tutor cannot accept the change you request, then you may have to cancel your booking.  See the cancellation policy.

Problems and cancellations

What is the cancellation policy / what happens if I need to cancel my tuition?

  • If you cancel more than one week before your date of arrival, you will receive a 50% refund, minus the 15% booking fee and any bank charges.
  • If you cancel less than a week before your arrival date, you will receive no refund. You are advised to take out an insurance policy to cover this loss if you are concerned about this possibility. If your current travel insurance doesn’t cover tuition fees, then there are a variety of specialist insurances (e.g. Student Studyguard).

What if I don’t find the accommodation to be suitable?

You should look carefully at the photos of your tutor’s accommodation carefully before booking. Tutors are required to use accurate photos. If the accommodation is not as shown or described in the tutor’s profile, please contact contact@thelanguagelist.co.uk.  We will aim to resolve the problem.

What if I don’t find the tutor to be suitable?

Ideally you and your tutor will have spoken on skype before your stay.  This should be a good opportunity for you to decide if your tutor will be suitable, and for your tutor to decide if you will be suitable.  It also helps the tutor prepare a suitable course for you, before your arrival.  You should not pay for your homestay before you are confident that the tutor is right for you.  However, if you do find you do not get on with your tutor and you want move to another, we will try arrange this for you.  Contact us on contact@thelanguagelist.co.uk and we will arrange to speak to you and your tutor as soon as possible.

Can tutors ask me to sign a contract?

No.  The tutor should not ask you to sign a contract. If a tutor asks you to sign a contract, please contact The Language List on contact@thelanguagelist.co.uk

How do I make my travel arrangements?

You are responsible for making your own travel arrangements to the UK.  The tutor may offer to pick you up from the airport or station or arrange for a taxi for you.  You should ask your tutor about this in advance.

Can I book on behalf of a friend or family member?

Yes you can. You must put in your payment details into the students account.

Your course

How can I tell if my English has improved?

Your teacher is likely to assess your English on arrival and at the end of your stay.  Many tutors will want to get an idea of how well you speak English before you come to the UK, so they can prepare a course for you.

For your own interest, you could take a test before your stay, and repeat it afterwards.  An example is the Cambridge test.  This test has 25 multiple test questions and you can print a copy of your results.

If you want to take an English exam, ask your tutor if they could arrange this for you.

Do the teachers provide text books?

All teachers use their own teaching materials.  Some tutors may provide you with text books, some may not.  If this is important to you, ask before you book.

Which certificates do the language teachers hold?

All tutors on The Language List have at least one relevant qualification. We have copies of all tutors’ certificates. Over 75% percent of tutors have the CELTA qualification.  (Certificate in English Language Teaching to Adults).  If they do not have the CELTA, they are likely to have TEFL (Teaching English as a Foreign Language) or TESOL (Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages) instead.  Approximately 17% have TEFL and 12% have TESOL.  Many also have a degree in English (BA) or a Degree in teaching (BEd).

Your tutor’s qualifications are listed on their profile.

Are trips / excursions / activities included in my stay?

If going on visits to interesting places is important to you, you will want to stay with a tutor who also offers a “cultural experience”.  Their profile will say how they will provide this experience.  You will have to pay the cost of entrance tickets and public transport (e.g. train) for both yourself and your tutor.

The time spent with your tutor on visits will also be valuable for learning English, but this is not included in the tuition hours you pay for in your booking.  Tuition time is when you are sitting in your lesson area having lessons.

Feedback

What are the review / feedback guidelines?

We want to know if your homestay experience was good or not.  We ask you to comment on this after your stay.  This is known as “leaving feedback”.  Your feedback is very important to The Language List.  It is an important part of building trust.

Your feedback comments will help other students decide whether your tutor will be good for them. Write what you thought about the teaching you got from your tutor.  Say what it was like to stay with them.  Was the food nice?  Were other people in the house nice?  Did you do interesting things?  Did you have fun as well as learn English?

Only say things that are true.  Do not say anything which is rude or offensive.  We will not remove or change your feedback unless it is rude or offensive.

If your tutor behaved badly or there is anything bad or important that you think we should know about your tutor, it is very important that you tell us.  Please contact us on contact@thelanguagelist.co.uk and we will arrange to speak to you about your experience.

Can the tutor say anything about me?

Yes, your tutor can leave feedback about you.

Trust and Safety

What shall I do if I have a problem or complaint?

If you have a problem contact us on contact@thelanguagelist.co.uk.  Give us a telephone number or better still a skype address and we will call you.

What if I am ill during my stay?

Your tutor will look after you if you become ill.   If you become very ill, your tutor will take you to a doctor, or if necessary to hospital.

Are tutors reference checked and police checked?

We ask all tutors to declare whether they have had any criminal convictions.  We do not accept tutors who have a criminal record.

Which certification do the teachers hold?

Tutors must hold relevant teaching qualifications, and safety certificates for their house.  We do not let any tutor on The Language List unless we have this information.