New TOEFL Test Format

The TOEFL test has been shortened with immediate effect. All test takers will now take the new, shorter version of the test. The scoring system remains the same. All sections of the test – reading, listening, speaking and writing – are scored out of 30, and the maximum total score is 120. The writing section has not been changed. All the other sections have been reduced in length.

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The best apps for language learning - as recommended by our teachers!

We recently asked our English teachers to give us their recommendations for the best language learning apps. (Note: these apps are great for extra practice or to build holiday vocabulary, but of course they can never replace personalised language lessons with a qualified teacher.

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Time management on the GMAT

Time management is one of the most important keys to success on the GMAT. Of course, time management is very important in all exams, but it is particularly vital on the GMAT. The goal of the test makers is to slow you down at every opportunity. In this blog you will find some advice that will make the time management a bit easier for you.

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Is the IELTS or the TOEFL test easier?

Different authorities require different tests. Some institutions require the TOEFL; some require the IELTS. In general, educational institutes prefer the TOEFL, and government agencies prefer the IELTS for immigration purposes or to assess whether potential workers have a high enough level of English to work successfully in their adopted country.
Find out which test suits you better in this blog!

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Should I take a BEC (Business English Certificate) or a general English exam (FCE, CAE, CPE,...)?

Does your job require a knowledge of business-focussed terms, or would you prefer to improve your wider general English vocabulary? Read more about the differences between the exams.

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Learn how German speakers can improve their English in 5 minutes!

Progress past sign language!

Progress past sign language!

1. One of the most important differences between German and English is in the use of the present perfect tense.

For example, “I have worked for the company for ten years”.  This means you still work for the company. The action started in the past, and is still true in the present.

If you translated this sentence directly word for word into German, it would read: “ich habe für die Firma für zehn Jahren gearbeitet”. This would mean that you no longer work for the company.

Do you see the difference? If not, send an e-mail with your question to our grammar expert, who will explain further. 

2. The difference between “for” and “since”.

Since is used with points in time. For example, since yesterday, since 4pm, since Tuesday, since 2013.

For is used with periods of time. For example, for ten minutes, for two hours, for three days, for six weeks.

3. The four conditionals:

Zero conditional: If it rains, I use an umbrella.

First conditional: If it rains this afternoon, I will use an umbrella.

Second conditional: If it rained this afternoon, I would use an umbrella.

Third conditional: If it had rained, I would have used an umbrella.


4. Every tense in English has two forms – simple and continuous.

For example:

Present simple                  Present continuous

 I talk                                      I am talking

Past simple                       Past continuous 

I talked                                 I was talking


5.     Adverbs in English are usually formed by adding –ly to adjectives. For example, quick – quickly.  Slow – slowly.

Adjectives modify nouns.

For example: It is a clear explanation.


Adverbs modify verbs, adjectives or other adverbs.

For example: She speaks clearly.

Today was extremely hot.

He walks extremely quickly. 


If it took you longer than 5 minutes to understand this, you could consider booking English lessons with us!