This advertorial was published in The Jakarta Post on March 5, 2008.
With globalization, the world is not only becoming more interconnected but the role of English as an international language has become increasingly important to adults.
This has led to the appearance of English learning centers not only in major cities but also in towns all over the country, each promoting its own methods for teaching the language. Regardless of the approach, the speed with which the language can be learned varies from one person to another. Most importantly, people learning the language need to keep up with the pace of learning.
Wall Street Institute School of English for Adults offers a unique system where each student can learn English at his or her own pace. It means that they can come to their classes as often as they like without worrying that they will miss anything since the school adapts itself to its students’ timetable.
Headquartered in New York, the Wall Street Institute has enjoyed worldwide success as there are more than 350 centers spreading into 27 countries since the first establishment 35 years ago. Not only are the institute’s native English-speaking teachers and staff professionally trained, but also the school’s unique teaching method, the use of multimedia technology, small classrooms and exciting social activities are well-designed to allow students to learn English in a natural and friendly environment.
In Asia, the success of the school has for more than four years been marked by a tremendous progress of those learning to speak, read and write English in China, Hong Kong, Taiwan, Korea, Singapore, Thailand and being the most recently put on the map, Indonesia.
Having been operated since February 2007 and situated in the Ratu Plaza of southern Jakarta’s main business district, the first Wall Street Institute Indonesia center has attracted many of those wanting to learn and improve the English language. Looking at the fact that there are more than 1,200 active students from twelve different nations enrolled and with the second center in La Piazza of Kelapa Gading is about to open, Wall Street Institute Indonesia has undoubtedly made a great success.
But the success here is not just about business. How the Wall Street Institute’s method allows students to improve their confidence in using English really matters, William J.G. Daniel, the Wall Street Institute Indonesia’s president director, explained to The Jakarta Post. “The Wall Street Institute’s mission is to be the best English language school for adults, measured by how quickly and conveniently students learn to speak English with confidence.”
“Most English programs teach students general rules of English even though they actually cover all aspects of the language; speaking, listening, reading and writing. Knowing the rules of English and being able to speak it are two different things. That’s why we are different. Our method is a unique one. It is a blended method of the best of different learning approaches, which can help our students not only achieve a deeper understanding of English but also able to use the language confidently.”
The school offers 6 stages (17 different levels altogether) of coursework ranging from Survival, where students are provided the basic framework of day-to-day language usage, to Mastery (highly advanced English), the stage that ensures students to continually improve their advanced skills.
Initially, students start with an interactive lesson, which teaches new vocabulary, grammar and idioms to be applied in real life situations. The interactive lessons take the form of state-of-the-art multimedia platform, which can be conveniently accessed either in the center’s multimedia lab or on-line.
The school’s amazing software program, which has been well-developed and improvements are continually being made, has proven to be effective to cater students’ learning needs. With the technology used, everything is tracked, minute by minute. Everything is recorded; not only the lessons in the multimedia lab but also the classes conducted with teachers. “By doing this, both the Wall Street Institute and the student can effortlessly track progress and easily identify points for improvement,” Daniel said.
Particularly for those keen to improve their English but impeded by their busy schedules, the school’s uniquely effective programs are set in accordance to the students’ need. Daniel said that the flexibility of the schedule was one of the reasons what makes adult learners choose to study English at the Wall Street. “Learning English at a place with a fix schedule is very difficult for those living in big cities like Jakarta, particularly the business people. They tend to get trapped with conditions potential to hinder their learning progress. Conditions such as traffic jams, busy working schedule, raining and unpredicted meeting are just a few to name.”
In response to such conditions, the Wall Street Institute designs a flexible timetable where students can choose their own class schedule. The students can attend a small class taught by experienced native English-speaking teachers. Having delivered in a small cozy glassy class, this so called Encounter is crucial in building both the student’s communication skills and self-confidence in using English, Daniel continued.
“And we also offer additional conversation classes called Complementary class for those wanting to hone their skills by talking with other students from a similar level with a variety of topics.”
The size of the class can determine the learning outcome. Speaking of class size, Daniel further explained that the number of students in any class could play a great role in determining the usefulness of the lesson. It is proven that many English learning centers, despite having good curricula are not successful due to placing too many students in a class. To achieve optimum conditions, many experts agree that a maximum of 5 students is recommended. The Wall Street Institute School of English is a good example since they limit classes to a maximum of four students. “And our current average number of students in class is 2.7,” Daniel said.
To enhance the student’s skills in the knowledge of grammar and structure, the school’s Student Manual provides written exercises based on the learning points in the interactive lesson. After completing the exercises, whether they’re done at home or in the center, students bring the exercises for the teachers to review.
In addition to learning at the multimedia lab, attending encounter and complementary classes and studying the student manual, students at the Wall Street Institute can engage in various styles of interactive activities at the social club and chat corners.
“It’s a Total English Environment!” the school’s president director gestured excitedly.
What he meant was that everybody must speak in English. The school’s social clubs and chat corners can indeed simulate an English-speaking environment that is potential to develop the student’s speaking skills. In addition, through a variety of social events and activities like futsal or special trips, students can learn to communicate to each other, Daniel added.
Also, students can practice speaking through an Internet community. “Students can practice speaking English 24 hours a day with students from Wall Street Institute School of English all over the world. And when you practice speaking, simultaneously you engage in listening practice as well,” said Daniel.
Having talked with a number of students at the school, The Jakarta Post found that despite different reasons of why these students prefer Wall Street to other institutions, all agree that their new journey to learning English has sharpened their speaking skills.
“Wall Street is very different from other English institutions I’ve ever attended,” Ricky Tupanwael, an accountant who is now in the Waystage 3 (a level comparable to Early Intermediate), expressed his satisfaction with the school. “What I have so far learned, especially in speaking, is beyond my expectations. It really works as I now can speak English with more confident than before I enrolled in the program 4 months ago.”
Mia Sutranina Hambali said that the flexibility schedule really fits her need. “No more missed classes! I can drop by anytime I want and choose from their many approaches, depending on how I want to learn English that day.” The charming fresh university graduate has joined the Wall Street Institute since June last year and has shown her positive attitude toward both the school’s students and teachers. “The students are motivated to learn on their own and teachers are always available should students need help. The result…I can speak better now.”
For Hyejun Jeon, learning to speak is very important. This Korean student started attending the Wall Street Institute in August last year and now feels much happier because she said she was given more opportunity to speak compared when she took English course at other institutions. “I have learned grammar for a long time, but it didn’t make me speak the language. And after a few months joining Wall Street, my speaking has substantially improved. So is my confidence.”
She added, “I really appreciate how individualized and self-paced the approach is. And the school’s friendly atmosphere is the one that makes everybody enjoy the learning.”
It’s true, though, that the most important aspect in learning the language is that you have to enjoy the learning process. Knowing English means you have a communication skill that can open the door not only to knowing other cultures, but also to better career opportunities. And Wall Street Institute is opening its doors to anyone wanting to learn and improve English with its unique and effective method that is fast, fun and flexible.”