One of the most amazing things about the United Kingdom is its incredibly rich and varied cultural heritage. The nations that today are part of it used to be very distinct settlements, with their own language, their own stories and their own people. We even used to fight very passionately in the past, and now for powerful reasons we have unified under the Queen. However, each place has its own story, its own heritage and its own personality.
The English language was introduced in Ireland a few centuries ago, and later it would become the most widely spoken language in both Northern Ireland and the Republic. From the many ancient langauges spoken in the land of the Celts, Irish has survived and is now recognized as an official language in the Republic of Ireland. There are schools, TV broadcasts and websites which use the Irish language.
However, today English is more widely used, and so Ireland is a great place to study it. Any English-speaking country is great for mastering this language because the school that you choose will be inserted in an English-speaking environment. It is much better and efficient to acquire language proficiency when you are constantly surounded by the daily use of said language. International students who travel to Ireland in order to learn English will have free practice classes with native teachers all the time: all they have to do is go to a drugstore, a restaurant, a shop, or just walk down the street. They will hear - and have to use - English all the time.
English is widely used in Ireland, as well as the Irish language, and there are many Irish English academies that accept international students. Ireland is a fabulous place for learning English, pretty much because it is a fabulous place for anything. This country has a very strong cultural heritage and it has contributed to the world's culture, especially narrative and art. There is a very vibrant, very magic, very inspired atmosphere in this country, and if you choose to engage in an English course either in Northern Ireland or the Republic of Ireland, you will definitely catch some of that inspiration for yourself.
This country might not be the first choice of many international stutents when they consider traveling overseas to study English. Common sense says that the best place for learning a language is the country where that language was born, so many will target England as the preferred place for their English oversea course, even if now the United States and their American version of our language are increasingly popular as an option.
However, Ireland is an amazing place to learn and master English. You will find native speakers everywhere, so you can have an immersion experience with daily practice and constant challenges. Also, there are plenty of certified English academies that accept international students, from within and outside the European Union.
Many English academies, including most top courses, are gathered in a large body known as Marketing English in Ireland. This association struggles to push English institutes in Ireland towards meeting high level standards, as well as promotes Ireland as a great place for studying English. If you want to study English in Ireland, you should look for an English academy that is a member of Marketing English in Ireland, because that's an extra guarantee of educational quality.
The world of English schools in Ireland has been shaken recently due to a long awaited reform that will affect many English academies. This reform was promoted by the government in order to further control and regulate the educational level of English courses for international students in Ireland. The Minister of Justice was concerned that some poor courses were used as an excuse for getting student visas, without having any actual academic level. The purpose of this reform was also to fight this situation even at the cost of closing down some English schools which would not meet the new standards.
There are pros and cons for English language courses under a recent reform in Ireland, because even if this measure is aimed to increase the general quality of international English education in the country, some English institutes will close their doors. In January a list of institutions which meet the new criteria will be published by the government, and those who aren't on that list will have to either change their internal structure and contents in order to meet the new regulations, or dissappear from the market.
Studying English in Ireland will become an even better experience for you, so if you are interested in the language we suggest that you take Ireland as an option.
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