Building on the base of StudyPortals’ higher education sites and backed by €150,000 in funding from the European Commission, the project aims to have 100,000 unique visitors by the end of the year and already lists over 1,500 language courses.
“We’ve got a great working concept but the language learning market doesn’t really have a very comprehensive overview of all language courses yet making it relatively untransparent,” commented Joran van Aart, Director of Student Value at StudyPortals.
“The language learning market doesn’t really have a very comprehensive overview of all language courses yet making it relatively untransparent”
“Students find it hard to know the difference between one course and another and to actually identify all the options. So we have solved this for higher education and we believe we can do it for languages as well.”
The format will be similar to the company’s other websites; students will be able to search for schools based on their language and location of interest. Initially courses for all 24 European languages will be made available with plans to expand globally beyond these languages in 2015.
Through the site, the company also aims to promote multilingualism by posting articles about the benefits of learning another language and information on accreditation and quality labels.
The initiative has been developed in collaboration with language training consultancy firm Linguaid and University of Southampton’s LLAS Centre for languages, linguistics and area studies, as part of the “Hello! Home of European Language Learning Opportunities” project under the European Commission’s Lifelong Learning Programme.
With over 10,000 language schools worldwide, the company is also working with its partners to establish a framework in order to ensure quality among listed schools.
“The difference in quality among language schools is far higher than among universities”
“We want to enable students to choose quality courses and we feel confident that we can make this happen for language learning, even though bringing transparency to language learning options is even more challenging than with higher education programmes.” commented Rob Jansen, project manager at StudyPortals.
“The difference in quality among language schools is far higher than among universities – perhaps even up to the power of 100”.
Listings on the portal are free with the option of buying a premium service that includes a profile page with multimedia features and priority in search results.
The launch on September 26th will coincide with the European Day of Languages and will be accompanied with a free online webinar about effective online marketing of language and foundation courses.