BBELS goes to Fraser Island

BBELS students in front of the Wreck at Fraser Island

Last week Reuben, our activities and tour manager, organised a trip to Fraser Island in Queensland. For 3 days our students got to enjoy the amazing environment of the world’s biggest sand island.

Fraser Island is famous for its biodiversity. It has beautiful coloured lakes and creeks, forest, and plenty of beaches. It is a quiet place to chill and recharge with friends, ideal for our students who have spent several months studying English .

BBELS usually organises a trip to Fraser Island every 12 weeks. Our students always return to Byron Bay feeling refreshed and they have many stories about the great time they had there. We believe these trips help maintain students’ motivation while also helping them to appreciate the gorgeous Australian natural environment.

For more information about the BBELS courses and activities please visit our website.

 

Fantastic Cambridge Exam Results at BBELS

We are very happy to tell you that our June Cambridge exam students got really great results. 100% of our Cambridge Advanced in English (CAE) students passed their exam, and 90% of our First Certificate in English (FCE) students passed their exam.

These are fantastic results and we hope that the students are pleased with their success. They worked very hard during their 12-week preparation course here at Byron Bay English Language School. Their teachers also worked hard, doing many hours of overtime to help the students succeed.

Here at BBELS our Cambridge students always receive excellent preparation in the CPE, CAE, ad FCE exams. Our teachers are extremely experienced and attend to each of the students’ academic needs to help them pass the exam.

Our next Cambridge preparation courses start on 4th September. If you would like more information about the course please email us at info@bbels.com.au or visit our website.

 

BBELS: Cambridge Results and student testimonials

CPE

Results for our CPE students

The results from the March Cambridge exams have just been released and we are very proud of our students’ achievements. As you can see from the above graph our students did very well in the Cambridge English: Proficiency (CPE) exam. Congratulations to them and their hard-working teacher.

Below you can read some messages of gratitude written by the students to their CPE teacher:

Thank you very much for everything you did for me and our class. You were an amazing teacher and I am sure that you’re one of the main reasons why I passed the CPE. I remember doubting even trying to pass it, and now I nearly got a B-Grade! Thank you so much for believing in me. Just today, I sent in my application for uni and I’ve decided to become a secondary school teacher instead of teaching at a primaryschool. This gives me the opportunity to choose English as my main subject 🙂

And another:

I passed CPE ! With 214 points (B). Thank you for all your support. And for pushing me!

 

CAE

Results for our CAE students

Results for our Cambridge English: Advanced (CAE) students were also fantastic! Every student passed. Those 10-weeks of preparation with their teacher really helped our students reach their goals. Here are some more testimonials from our appreciative students:

I don’t know how but I got an A in writing and passed with 191. This wouldn’t have been possible without you! Big thanks to you again!

And one more:

I passed with 196! 🙂 I’m so glad about it, I think I’d have never passed with such a score without the help of your really good Cambridge course! Thank you so much for it 🙂

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Results for our FCE students

Finally a big congratulations to our Cambridge English: First (FCE) students. At the beginning of the 10-week course many students doubted they would pass the exam but with their determination and teacher’s guidance they achieved some great results.

These results show that Byron Bay English Language School is a great place to prepare for the Cambridge English exams. Our students get the chance to study with Cambridge teachers who have over 10 years experience in teaching English as a Second Language. One of the Cambridge teachers is a qualified Cambridge speaking examiner and so she can help our students considerably in this part of the exam.

Byron Bay is a beautiful town to live in and it is the perfect place to study. We hope to see you here for our next Cambridge Preparation Course start date on the 13th June.

Congratulations to our Cambridge students

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Cambridge September-December 2015

The results have just arrived for our last group of Cambridge students and we are extremely happy with their achievements.

Our Advanced Cambridge classes got a combined total of 84%, with one student receiving a grade “A”. The First Certificate class worked extremely hard, they received an average of 93%.

These are fantastic results and we are very proud of the students and their teachers. The results show that students can balance the fun atmosphere of Byron Bay with the hours of study that are needed to pass the Cambridge exams.

We hope that the certificates help our students in their future careers and studies. Well done everyone!

Why study the IELTS and Cambridge courses at BBELS

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Taking one of our test preparation courses at BBELS is a perfect way to pass the Cambridge and IELTS exam. Each of the teachers chosen to teach the courses have had years of experience in preparing students for the exams and therefore our students have a high pass rate.

Before allowing students into our testing courses we ask each student to complete a test which checks their levels. This 1 ½ hour test focuses on speaking, listening, grammar and writing. Students are then put into class depending on their test result. Students need to have completed studies at an Intermediate level in order to be accepted into our IELTS and FCE courses, and potential CAE students need to have completed an Upper-intermediate course. Our careful testing of all students at this early stage means that our classes flow smoothly throughout the duration of the course.

BBELS teachers have regular Professional Development sessions where they share ideas on teaching methodologies related to the various areas of the exams. These professional development sessions always result in the teachers creating new resources for the testing courses. In doing so, the teachers provide their students with lessons that are specifically tailored to the requirements of the exams and our students .

Each week students in the testing classes focus on individual points of grammar and vocabulary that allow them to successfully answer different parts of the exam. Classes are tested each week as a way to check individual student progress. This helps the teacher identify any weaknesses in the students’ comprehension of what has been studied. These tests also familiarise the students with the format of the Cambridge and IELTS exam.

Our testing courses run for 12 weeks with the exception of one 10-week course per year. We believe this is enough time for students to develop their skills in all areas of the exams. As we are an authorised Cambridge testing centre we are able to test our Cambridge students here at the school, this includes the paper-based exams and the speaking exam (this is subject to student numbers). This means our students can take the exam in a familiar environment allowing them to feel relaxed.

Our regular IELTS teacher is also an IELTS examiner so she knows exactly what the students need to know before they take the test. Because of this our IELTS students always do particularly well, with many of them continuing to study at universities in Australia and overseas.

Studying one of our testing courses at BBELS is also a great way for our students to make friends both in and out of the classroom. Students can study in a multicultural classroom with students from Europe, Asia, and the Americas. Outside of the classroom students can live in student-houses provided by the school. Here they can live with students from differentschool-classes and countries, expanding their circle of friends in Byron Bay.

BBELS holds regular Friday night parties at the school so that students can meet more people outside their classroom and share-house environment. This is a great way for students to unwind and recharge after a week of study and tests. Activities are also organised by the school each weekend which students can participate in, allowing the students to balance the demands of an exam course with a more relaxed lifestyle.

As Byron Bay is a small town everything is easily accessible by bike or on foot. Students often talk about the friendliness of the townspeople and so they make friends with locals quickly (if they are not too shy). It is common to see students and locals together at cafes and pubs, or surfing at one of our quiet beautiful beaches. Communicating with the locals builds the students’ confidence, something that is very important when they take the exam.

So on both academic and social levels students who choose to study a testing course at BBELS have the potential to do very well. We provide the framework for student success; the rest is up to the hard work and discipline of each individual student.

 

 

 

 

Congratulations to our Cambridge Exam Students

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Image courtesy of Cambridge English

Byron Bay English Language School has had fantastic news regarding the results of our June Cambridge exam students. We are proud of the students who studied so enthusiastically in both the CAE and FCE classes. We are also very proud of our Cambridge teachers who guided the students through the 12 week course.

Every student in the FCE class passed the exam with some exceptional results in all areas of the test. This is now the second time this year that we have had a 100% pass rate for each student taking the FCE exam.

The CAE class also had an extremely high success rate. In fact 30% of the students received a grade A or grade B. Well done!

The results show that Byron Bay English Language School is a place where students who are serious about passing exams will have the professional guidance to achieve their goals. Our school perfectly balances academia with healthy lifestyle experiences such as surfing, swimming, yoga outside of the classroom.

Choosing between the IELTS and Cambridge Courses

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Students at BBELS often ask us to describe the difference between the IELTS and Cambridge Mainsuite exams (FCE, CAE, CPE).

Choosing between the different courses is important, especially if your objective is related to future academic studies, sponsorhip or national citizenship.

Following is a guide to help you select the course which will provide you with the best outcome.

IELTS (International English Language Testing System):

Why is IELTS useful:

IELTS is important for students who are interested in entering TAFE colleges and Australian and international universities. IELTS is essential for students who wish to immigrate to Australia, Canada and New Zealand. If you want to work in a professional job in Australia, the USA or British commonwealth countries it is also neccessary to do the IELTS exam.

It is generally advised that academic institutions do not accept an IELTS report that is more than 2 years old.

What is the structure of the exam:

Students can elect to sit either the General IELTS exam or the Academic IELTS exam. The General IELTS exam is useful for immigration purposes and to enter non-academic training contexts. The Academic IELTS exam is suited for students who wish to enter universities and professions that use English in the workplace.

The IELTS exam tests 4 skills: speaking, listening, reading, writing. The Academic IELTS exam tests students’ reading and writing ability at a higher level than the General IELTS exam.

Speaking: is divided into General Topics, One Prepared Topic and a Discussion with the examiner.

Listening: consists of a variety of question styles. Using correct spelling is important.

Reading: consists of 3 passages. Question styles include include multiple choice, writing words, matching and summarizing.

Writing: Students will be expected to write papers which Present and Support an Opinion; Discuss Problems/Solutions; balance Two Arguments

Who can study the IELTS preparation course:

The course is open to full-time students in the Upper-intermediate-Advanced levels. Depending on the time of year the course runs for 10-12 weeks. It is a requirement that students commence in the first week of the course for a minimum of 8 weeks. Students must also sit a pre-entry test before commencing the course.

The IELTS test can be taken at the Gold Coast, approximately one hour from Byron Bay.

Cambridge 3
Graduation Day for one of our First Certificate in English classes.

The Cambridge Mainsuite Exams:

Why are the Cambridge exams useful:

The Cambridge exams are useful for work and acdemic purposes.

A pass in the First Certificate in English exam (equivalent to level B2 of the CEFR) indicates an everyday written and spoken ability in English. This is recognised by many international companies and educational institutions.

The Certificate in Advanced English is recognised by over 10,000 employers and colleges worldwide. Furthermore it is approved by the Australian government for student visas.

The Certificate of Proficiency in English is recognised by prestigious universities around the world as evidence of a high level in academic and social English.

The CAE and CPE exams are extremely difficult to pass without studying in a preparation course beforehand.

What is the structure of the exams:
There are 5 sections to the tests: Reading, Writing, Use of English, Listening, and Speaking.

Reading: There are long and short passages with different types of questions. Texts range from newspapers, fiction stories, interviews, advertisements and other media.

Writing: Two different types of writing are required. Possible formats include letters, reports, reviews, essays or short stories.

Use of English: Tasks that show grammar and vocabulary control are tested in this section.

Listening: Questions are asked about a range of recordings including news programs, presentations and conversations.

Speaking: This involves direct answers to an examiner, descriptions of pictures, pair work.

There is no expiry limit to the Cambridge reports.

Who can study the Cambridge preparation course:

The Cambridge courses are open to full-time students in the Upper-intermediate to Advanced levels. Depending on the time of year the courses run for 10-12 weeks. It is a requirement that students commence in the first week of the course. Students must also sit a pre-entry test before commencing the course.

Students are either tested here at BBELS or at the Gold Coast (approximately one hour from Byron Bay).

Our IELTS and Cambridge students always report that their vocabulary and grammatical accuracy improves dramatically throughout the preparation courses. The skills learned in the courses make our students much more employable both here in Australia and in their home country. Students also comment about the sincere friendships that are formed during the 3 months spent studying together.

If you would like to know more about our testing courses please contact today!

 

 

 

 

FCE, CAE & IELTS CLASSES STARTING 10 SEPTEMBER

Feedback from our last Cambridge class:

“That every person you meet is so friendly and warmhearted and you feel as if you are part of a big family.”

“I liked the location and the teachers.”

“I liked the activities and the school party. And everybody is so friendly and the teachers are motivated to teach the students. I had a great time here.”

“My favourite classes were in Cambridge class, good nationality mix, teachers and classmates.”

We have First Certificate in English FCE, Cambridge Advanced English CAE and International English Language Testing System IELTS classes starting from the 10 September.

Our Cambridge and IELTS classes are always very popular due to our wonderful teachers, the course and you the students.

There is not much about Cambridge and IELTS that our teachers don’t know. Frank the Cambridge coordinator is also a Cambridge examiner and Liese is an IELTS examiner.

If you want to join Cambridge or IELTS please see Siobhan or go to reception.

Cambridge Graduation


All good things must come to an end and so we had to say goodbye to the Cambridge classes of September 2011.
In true BBELS style we ended the course with a BBQ at Clarke’s beach and a graduation ceremony.

This year we had the First Certificate (FCE) in English class taught by Robin, Cambridge Advanced English (CAE) taught by Frank and Lisa and Cambridge English Proficiency (CPE) taught by Frank and Deborah.

It was a bit windy at Clarke’s however; everybody had a great time with plenty of sausages to go around