What is the Berlitz Method?
Invented by our founder, Maximilian Berlitz, the Berlitz Method is the first-known immersive teaching method and has shaken up traditional language learning styles since its inception. Since the beginning of the Berlitz Method, it has been proven by academic studies that it is more successful than traditional theoretical foreign language learning techniques.
How the Berlitz Method developed
The Berlitz Method, like many great discoveries, came about by chance and a creative mind. While teaching in the United States, Maximilian Berlitz hired a young Frenchman, Joly, as his assistant. However, upon Joly’s arrival in the United States, Berlitz learned that his new assistant could not speak a word of English.
Berlitz fell seriously ill during the days when Joly started working as his assistant. Therefore, Berlitz had no choice but to let Joly take over his teaching duties. Berlitz asked Joly to use gestures to express the meaning of foreign words, and to use words in context to help French students understand the meaning.
Six weeks later, Berlitz recovered from his illness and returned to school with concerns that his students were too far behind. On the contrary, he was surprised to find that his students were speaking better French than ever before.
The fact that students took lessons from someone who only spoke French accelerated their learning. As a result, a completely new and highly effective teaching method, the Berlitz Method, was born.
The Berlitz Method, which has been used for more than 140 years, has enabled millions of people to speak a foreign language fluently in more than 70 countries around the world.
The Berlitz Method today
The Berlitz Method is still the most effective way to learn a foreign language and continues to be used today.
Key Elements of the Berlitz Method
Only the target language is used in the Berlitz Method
Your instructor only teaches and speaks in your target language. Language is taught using real-life situations with a focus on grammar and vocabulary.
The Berlitz Method is Goal-Oriented
In the Berlitz method, each lesson is task-oriented with specific learning objectives. For example, if you’re learning business English, your lesson might be “setting the agenda for a meeting”. If you’re learning General English, your lesson might be “check-in at the airport”. Thus, you can immediately use your newly learned language in real life.
Present, practice and perform
To help you absorb the foreign language, each lesson follows a certain structure and Berlitz teachers are experts in using this structure.
New content is presented by your instructor, you take part in both guided practice and general practice, and then you are encouraged to use what you have learned.
Thus, you will not only learn the theoretical knowledge, but also practice the knowledge you have learned by speaking and be ready to use it in real life.