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EF reviews

3.40/5
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About
EF
ABOUT
Description not available at this time.
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Languages taught: English
Phone: (356) 2570 2000
Address: The Mayfair Complex, St George's Bay, STJ 02 Saint Julians, Malta
5 reviews
3.40 / 5 based on 5 reviews
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Useful  |  1
Gernot
Austria
Course: 2 weeks, 17 hours/week, residence, August 2021
Overall
I (52; male) just stayed 2 weeks in EF Malta (End of August 2021) and was in an apartment and NOT with a host family. 

A.) Upside

The first week I was in a great apartment in Baluba Bay which was unfortunately 25 minutes walking distance away from the language school + beach club. I asked EF Malta after a few days if I can have a closer apartment and at the beginning of the second week I got even an upgrade: I got a 3*** Hotel room (Doublebed) which was just 5 Minutes away (Hotel Allegro) with breakfast and rooftop pool. Many EF-students were in that Hotel too. The second week was perfect as I was able to fully participate in the social activities (events) organized by EF as well as joining the EF beach club in the afternoon where all the cool students hang around in late afternoon. The EF Beach club is just 2 Minutes away from the school. Thank you for that EF-team, that was so great!!!

The language school is located in Paceville (part of St. Julians) which is a big party area: 2 large clubs (Foodloose; Havanna) and about 10 smaller clubs/bars (Nordic bar, Native bar, etc.). I was out almost every night. Due to corona all clubs and bars had to close at 2 a.m. (but no other restrictions in the clubs/bars) which was Ok because some classes started at 8 a.m. next day. Many party people from UK and Scandinavia go out there beside of the language students. Mood was great.

The classes were OK, but the progress could have been 2 or 3 times faster. The focus was more on becoming fluent in speaking English and not so much on becoming better in grammer und vocabularies. Only a few grammer rules and new vocabularies were introduced every week, but then repeated a lot in excercices. Also the pronunciation was not in focus and never corrected by the teacher. So if you already have good grammer + vocabularie knowledge and want to become fluent in speaking english, I fully can recomend EF Malta (BUT: If you have to prepare for a written exam, there are probably better but surely more boring options. If you want to learn for live: Go to EF). You talk a lot in the 4 - 5 hours a day in the school as there are many exercise topics (e.g. Environment; Climate change: in which the introduced vocabularies and grammer should be used) which must be discussed and/or prepared with your neighbour or in small groups. And then it is important to go to the EF beach club to talk English with other students there (Do NOT talk with students of your home country in your mother tounge. I saw this unfortunately a lot). 
Following nationalites were there:

- 20% German, AT, SZ + NL

- 20% French + Belgium

- 20% Italy

- 20% Latins (10% Spain, Portugal + 10% Latin America)

- 10% Eastern Europe (Czech Republic, Russia, Ucraine, etc.)

- 10% Other (Far East, Near East, Africa)

As it is a very well balanced mix of central and western European culture which you can get to know in one spot for a few weeks. You may notice the cultural differences and learn a lot about Europe and the social live of neighbour contries.

About 75% of the students are female.

About 80% of the students were between 16 and 25 years old. If you are an older horse (like me) it is important that you are in good shape (as you want to cut a good figure on the EF beach club and at the beaches during the EF trips) and like to talk and connect with younger people. As I do this at home a lot I was able to get to know many people here too.

At the beach club it is also important to organize evening activities with other students. So you can talk and listen english also in the evening / night and get to know many differnt people. If you are doing good, you speak and listen up to 14 hours english a day directly face to face with your student colleges. I noticed one thing: The better the english level of a student was (>=B2) the more they were able or willing to get to know and connect with other students. The students on lower levels were usually the one who spoke with other students in their mother tounge. As I joinde C1 level classes (and passed the C2 level test at the end) I was able to connect with many other students. Everyone is friendly and likes to communicate (maybe not so much the one who are on the lower levels). But at least half of the students are B2 or higher.

Last but not least: If you may check the internet you will find out that EF also stands for "Easy Friends" which means that you can connect with other people quite easily. So far so good but it also goes beyond: It is not a secret (expecially in EF-Malta as I can confirm) EF also stands for "Easy Fxxx" which means you can find occasional, spontanious, likemindet people quite easily.

B.) Downside

I heard a lot of complaints from studendts which were in host families. There were maybe only 30% which were satisfied with their situation. Many wanted to change there host families as they were disappointed from the circumstances:

- no or bad food and water offered by the guest family; 
- dirty rooms and bed sheets (changed only monthly); 
- air condition does not work in sleeping rooms (no real intend by host family to repair it)

- 3 or more students share 1 small sleeping room <15 sqm); 
- family-guys enter the sleeping room without asking ar knocking the door also in the evening, or early morning (girls were very scared about that); 
- no one from the guest family is available for you for days (because they sometimes stick you in a substandard "guest house"); 
- guest family member watching TV in the living room (or hiding in there rooms in front of there PCs) the whole evening and do not talk with students; 
- house of guest family is 1,5 hours away from language school (--> which ressults in a daily transfer time of at least 3 hours and an exclusion from the night live and social activities organised by EF on the evening as some public transports lines already finish services at 10:00 p.m. or an weekends), 
- etc.

One of these listed issues would already be enough to be feel bad. But very often you can expect few or more of these issues come along in one package and no easy way out.

Especially for "underage student" (below 19) it was often a tough situation with their host families as they can't change their situation quickly by themselves (e.g. changing the host family). I heared that the situation with guest families became worse the last 15 years as communication skills and interest in foreign people decreases due to this arise of socieal media pandemic. 
Of course EF Malta does not have full control over the host families to which they allocate their students. BUT: They could (should) eliminate 50% of their host families as they know which one are the "black sheeps". Of course this could shake more than a little bit the business model of EF as finally they would not be able to find enough high quality host families and as a result they could not sell as many student places as they do now.

So if you are reading this and are parent who wants to "save money" (because guest familiy hosting is cheaper than accomodation with EF) really think twice if you want to stick your teenager to a host family. Just invest a few hundred Euros more and provide an accomodation at the EF - school and you are on the upper side. Your kids will also get to know much more other students if they live at an accomodation. Your kids will love you.

C.) Conclusion (for me):

    Anyway: for me it was one of my top 10 vacations of my life.    -
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My progress
Speaking
Listening
Reading
Writing
Pros
See above: A.) Upside
Cons
See above: B.) Downside
Useful  |  8
Álvaro
Pamplona, Spain
Course: 4 weeks, 12 hours/week, residence, July 2006
Overall
Doing my stance in Malta at EF School, I could improve my English but not as good as I wish it. It was a great School, but at the same time I think that it was not very well organized. We were divided in different groups depending on each level. But the problem was that I wasn't belong the level I was suposed to be. I told to the organization about my problem and they moved me to another level at the second week. In the end as I said before it was a helpful experience for me; nowadays my English is quite more fluent and I also got the opportunity to be familiar with other different cultures. That is why now I can define  my profile much more international than before I had this abroad experience.
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My progress
Speaking
Listening
Reading
Writing
Pros
The team was very friendly and helpful, and the atmosphere was great. They taught us to work at a team.
Cons
The organization in different levels.
Useful  |  4
Kasper
Madrid, Spain
Course: 23 weeks, 20 hours/week, residence, February 2015
Overall
Ef Malta was the worst chose of my life that will cost me a lot of student depths for nothing, not only to pay a massive fee for a school that gives u an education in slow motion and childlike learning. I don't really know where to start, E was the first official that I met, and he is literally crazy, many girls are afraid off him, because he dos not knock, and if a girl is standing shirtless he won't bother to turn his head around, he will be looking straight at you. Many girls are very concerned about his next move, he asked for girls numbers and many other things that made a lot of people uncomfortable especially younger girls. NOBODY TRUSTS OR LIKE HIM, so if you have a massive problem there is no one with authority to turn to because the one with authority is the one that they are afraid of at night. The only one at the school that is casually listening to your needs is the principal. 
Its all about money for them, every trip, everything. the cleaning ladies have to work 7 days a week, and EF don't care about that, and that they don't care is horrible. They had new cleaning ladies every month because so many couldn't take the pressure. 
The school is a way to expensive for their learning programs, the teachers have big problems with pronunciation, and sometimes even grammar, especially in classes that are lower than a B2 level. They also say that Malta is an English speaking country, which it's not really, people have very poor English speaking skills, so I had to go to England after 3 months to finish my 6 months of grade because my high English level didn't get any better in Malta. 
If you want to change classes or upgrade to a higher level, there is no way that anyone will help you ever. The receptionist "P" hasn't smiled since the 18 hundred century, S or is always "beach" facing everyone and the sales office in your country probably lied and lied and lied all and all over again. 
Malta is a poor choose but I think that Ef is even worst, chose other cheaper schools next time. There is a lot more to tell, but I don't have time, for example when a teacher was my weed dealer, but I liked that guy so I won't mansion any names. 
The school was not about learning but about, money party and tourism in Malta
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My progress
Speaking
Listening
Reading
Writing
Pros
small classrooms
Cons
a book selection of 10. and it cost 10 € to rent.
Useful  |  2
Leo
Switzerland
Course: 6 weeks, 32 hours/week, homestay, February 2021
Overall
The EF are a good an helpful school. Befor you leave, you do a test to check your English level. You can choos a lot of preference to get your individually lessons. If you  think you can move up your level, you can do a Test. If you passed it, you can change the class. You have enough freetime to spend it with friends or EF-activitys.
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My progress
Speaking
Listening
Reading
Writing
Pros
the school is modern
Cons
sometimes we're 14 students in a small classroom
Useful  |  7
Francisco
Milan, Italy
Course: 24 weeks, 20 hours/week, homestay, February 2009
Overall
Serious school and new structure: fresh and enjoyable environment. Teachers always available to any need from students. The school is in the city center, 150 from the beach.
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My progress
Speaking
Listening
Reading
Writing
Pros
High level of specialization on teachers.

Specific programms for different necessities of learning.
Cons
Not to many activities to know the maltese culture.
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