FAQ’s / Frequently asked questions

Who comes to 'ELC' English and why?

Our students and mature people of all ages come from all over the world – we frequently have more than 15 different nationalities studying with us. Students study for pleasure and progress in English and to prepare for examinations in general and business English for entry into higher education in England such as Private Independent Schools, colleges, Universities, Defence Forces, Police Forces, Fire services and Companies.

How long are the courses?

‘ELC’ offers year round courses from 2 to 36+ weeks. We have a continuous entry system so that after entrance testing, students can start on any day with the group of their English level.

What is the minimum age for attending your courses?

We accept students from 18 years old until 88 years old.

Where can I find your dates and fees?

You will find the dates and fees information for a particular course on our website. Prices 2022

If I cannot study for 15 hours per week, what can I do?

Students who are unable to attend everyday may join classes for two or more sessions per week, mornings, from September to June. This flexible concession is payable for 10 classes, billed after your first morning. If you can not attend classes any week, having paid then e-mail ‘ELC’ English by 9:30am and we shall give you a ‘time credit’ so you do not lose your time nor money- this is very fair.

Does 'ELC' English have Entrance Level Testing?

Yes. All students take an ‘ELC’ English online placement test together with a student profile needs analysis, to determine their level of ability in English. They then join the group appropriate to their level.

Does 'ELC' English offer Certificates and Reports?

Yes. At the end of the course all students will be given a graded certificate of attendance and progress (2 weeks study minimum). On request a detailed report can be sent every month to parents or sponsoring organisations – click for a sample.

Does 'ELC' English assist with Visa Applications?

Students who need a visa for entry into Britain will be sent a Short Term  Study  visa letter on payment  of the fees for the length of their course for up to 6 or 11 months.  Fees will be refunded, less a handling charge of £275.00 if a visa is not granted – see  Terms and Conditions.

Can I extend my visa if I want to stay longer?

Short Term Study visas cannot  be extended in the UK under UKVI rules. However, if you have an unconditional offer from a higher education institution e.g. College / University because you have achieved the appropriate IELTS score, you may apply for another visa while you are in the UK.

Can I work part time while I am studying?

Under UKVI  rules you are not allowed to work part time if you are a non-EEA / EU student on a Short Term Study  visa.

Do I have to make full payment before the course starts?

All Non-EU students requiring a UK visa must pay school fees (host family and DHL services if applicable) in full, in advance for the period booked. This must be shown on the ‘ELC’ English visa letter, with UK postal address and amount of fees paid.

How should I make payment?

Payment may be made online by bank transfer, by bank cheque drawn on a UK branch bank, Western Union, MoneyGram or cash in the office.

How much will my accommodation cost?

Room , breakfast and dinner ( minimum stay 2 weeks ) – £195.00 per week (7 nights).

Not available at the moment, due to Covid-19. For students from 18 years old.

Click section ‘Accommodation

How far is the 'Homestay' from 'ELC' English ?

‘ELC’ English has personally selected and inspected all homestays. A few homestays are within walking distance of the school. Others may be up to 30 minutes bus ride from the school.

Can I stay in my accommodation for longer than the course?

Not normally as accommodation is arranged for those students studying at our school. In exceptional cases special arrangements may be made.

What can I expect from my host family?

* A welcoming environment to ensure your welfare is always considered and awareness of cultural differences and customs.
* A clean and tidy bedroom with wardrobe, small table and chair for studying.
* Breakfast and evening meal.
* At least one shower or bath per day.
* At least one laundry service per week.
* Door key on request.

What does the family expect from me?

1) A call or email from you a few days before you come to confirm your arrival time.
2) Respect for the family home and house rules – no phone calls in the house after 10 pm except for emergencies – no visitors in the house without permission from the hosts – keep your bedroom tidy and leave the bathroom dry and clean.
3) Call the family if you are going to be home late for dinner or late in the evening. No self-catering (cooking) unless agreed by the host landlady – the kitchen is her special & private area!.

How do I get to Reading town in central southern England?
Should I arrange insurance?

We strongly advise you to arrange insurance before you leave home.

Term / Semester Dates 2024

Winter / Spring TermOpen: am 8th January
Closed: pm 29th March
Easter vacationClosed: 29th March
Open: am 8th April
Summer / Autumn TermOpen: am 8th April
Closed: pm 13th December
National Public Holidays29th March & 1st April, 6th & 27th May, 26th August.
2025Open: am 13th January 2025

I have a great memory of all at ‘ELC’, excellent teachers, friendly staff and meeting lots of new friends.

Gabriela, Italy

Read More Testimonials

‘ELC’ experience for me it has been an amazing experience because I'm confident person when I speak English with people. ‘ELC’ is a friendly school. I recommend ‘ELC’ because I hve learnt a lot, the teachers are very professional. Mr McBurney is a good man. I love ‘ELC’ school.

Alison, Spain

Read More Testimonials

I improved my English day after day. Thanks to ‘ELC’. Reading is a very nice town, great, lively and quiet. I chose ‘ELC’ as my best friend advised me.
I would recommend ‘ELC’ as it is interesting to meet people from different countries and there is nice, friendly atmosphere here.

Adrien, France

Read More Testimonials

Thank you ‘ELC’ for the period I spent with you. It was one of the best experience of my life.
I would like to greet Mr McBurney and fantastic teachers when I return to Reading.

Alessandro, Italy

Read More Testimonials

I have met some good friends at ‘ELC’ from other countries. I will always keep in touch with them. When I came to England my English was rubbish. I see, it’s better now.
Bianca and Mr McBurney are really good teachers. Especially, McBurney teaches very well. I will never forget his different stories and vocabularies. Thank you ‘ELC’.


Read More Testimonials

I have had a great experience at ‘ELC’ school not only about the professional teachers but also about the organisation in general. Olena and Mr McBurney, both are very helpful and kind people and they provide you with the best option to attend your classes and also the best home stay accommodation. I strongly recommend the college and the tutors to anyone to coming in UK to learning English.


Read More Testimonials

I learnt a lot of valuable skills and information. The course content met my expectations. The teachers were very knowledgeable in the subject and presentation of lessons was easy to follow and understand. The teachers made course interesting and stimulating. Thanks ‘ELC’. I had a very good time.


Read More Testimonials

I arrived here by coincidence and I couldn’t be happier. I met a lot of great people and had fun in the classes and I learnt a lot of English too. I would recommend ‘ELC’ if you want to learn English it is the best way to do it, it’s not like learn in a job, because they can correct your mistakes. You meet a lot of people with more or less the same level of English as you and it makes it easier to go out and communicate with other people.


Read More Testimonials
Husain Abdul Wahid

On my first day at ‘ELC’, I was afraid that I might not have what it takes to get the grade I needed, but as soon as I met the whole staff, teachers and the principal it all changed . I didn’t thought that they will be so friendly and helpful . When I started to study, teachers really helped me to work on my weak points and to improve what I am good at. Whenever I had a question they always make sure to give me that I need. I recommend ELC to any student who wants to learn English in an academic and a friendly environment. I am sure that all students will feel like home and if you are a student you will get excited to attend every class and every debate.

Husain Abdul Wahid

Read More Testimonials

‘ELC’ is a good combination of intensive, productive work and a friendly atmosphere. I improved my English and it makes me feeling more confident.

Above all, tutors and all staff of ‘ELC’ is very attentive to every student, every question and wish.

Reading is a small, nice and beautiful town, situated on the river, not far from London, Oxford and Windsor, so you can combine both studying and a good rest, going sightseeing. Life in Reading is calm and slow and people are polite and friendly, I like it very much.

At the same time you can find everything here – nice restaurants and pubs, shopping centres and concert halls. I’d strongly recommend ‘ELC’ because you feel at home here from the 1st day of classes. You get attention both as a student and a person. Personal of ‘ELC’ is high qualified. At the same time price is very reasonable. Location is also very good – in the centre of the town with its infrastructure. So, it’s the best school so far. If I have chance to come back to ‘ELC’ again, I’ll be happy! Thank you, ‘ELC’!


Read More Testimonials

Ellie's class is perfect for me. I really like her and her teaching style and I learned a lot during my stay in 2012. Therefore, I am very happy to continue in Ellie's class. I haven't taken any of IELTS/TOEFL/Cambridge exams yet, because my University here in Germany didn't accept any of them. The University has its one placement examination which one has to pass in order to study English. Would you recommend that I take one of them? And if yes, which one?

I really look forward to coming back.


Read More Testimonials

Dear Mr. Mc Burney,

I hope you are fine and in good health.
I am one of your students I had my best English course ever in 2011, you may not remember me but l'll never forget you. You just came across my mind and I can't stop smiling while remembering all that happy moments you let us feel. I really wish to study with you again and wish you all the best Mr. Mc Burney.


Read More Testimonials