You can start whenever you want – on any day.
Yes. Enrolment is completely free for all our courses.
You will take an online level test when you enrol. You will also have a speaking test with a teacher on Zoom or at the school.
Our level test is not an exam, it just tells us which is the best level for you. You cannot ‘fail’ the test. There are 36 questions in the online level test and it takes up to one hour. The speaking test takes about 10 minutes.
Yes. Just ask at reception or contact us
For adult courses, 16 years old. We have had students from age 16 to age 72. Most students are in their 20s or 30s.
It depends. For most classes, our maximum class size is 12 but there are usually less students than this. Afternoon Small Group classes have a maximum of 4 students. You can ask at reception for the number of students attending class this week.
Most classes are 1 hour and 40 minutes (50 minute lesson + 10 minute break + 50 minute lesson).
Small group afternoon classes are 2 hours and 5 minutes (1 hour lesson + ten minute break + 1 hour 5 minutes lesson)
All our teachers are native speakers or have native-level proficiency.
Yes. We have General English classes from Beginner to Advanced. We have Starter (A1), Elementary (A2), Pre-Intermediate (B1), Intermediate (B1+), Upper-Intermediate (B2) and Advanced (C1). We also have exam preparation classes (FCE, CAE, CPE and IELTS). Find the best course for you here.
It depends. Do you study at home? Do you practise your English outside of class? Do you speak English at work? Are you living with English speakers?
Your level is assessed regularly by your teacher. When your English reaches the next level, your teacher or the Academic Director will speak with you directly.
If you want to change level, fill in an ‘Assessment Form’ at reception. Your English will then be assessed and the School Director or Senior Teacher will decide if you should change level.
Students have different knowledge and abilities so sometimes you may combine classes from two different levels at the same time (depending on what grammar and vocabulary you need to practise).
It depends. How much time do you have? How much money do you want to spend? Do you want to improve quickly?
– Studying for a few weeks? Most people choose 10 or 14 classes (16 hours 40 minutes or 25 hours) per week.
– Living and working in Edinburgh long-term? Most people choose 2 – 5 classes (3 hours 20 – 8 hours 20 minutes) per week.
Yes. You can take 1 – 5 private lessons per week. Contact us for more information.
Yes. You must take the same number of classes per week, but if you’re a part-time student, you can change the day and time you take your classes.
If you are studying for longer than 4 weeks, you can take a holiday and not lose your classes. Talk to us at reception or email email@example.com at least one week before you want to pause your classes.
You don’t lose your money. You can take your classes over a longer period of time. For example, 2 classes/week for 10 weeks instead of 5 classes/week for 4 weeks. Talk to us at reception with at least one week’s notice.
Yes, within the same week. You cannot…
We can arrange a ‘meet and greet’ service with a taxi driver, but there is a charge. Click here for prices of Airport Transfers.
Yes. Some of our homestay families don’t have children or pets.
Talk to reception, who will arrange an appointment with the School Director, Chris Russell.
You can pay by cash, credit card or bank transfer.
In the UK/Edinburgh:
From outside the UK:
We don’t add any charges for non-UK credit/debit card payments or international bank transfers using a service like Wise or FlyWire. Your own bank may charge you , please check with them. For traditional bank transfers, we charge an extra £7.
Yes. We accept most overseas cards.
If you cancel within the first 7 days of your contract, you will be given a full refund (less any classes taken). If you need to cancel after this time, refunds are generally not possible. However, you could pause your course for up to 12 months.
For Pay Monthly courses, you can cancel your payments at any time directly by going to the WorldPay website.
For courses booked from outside the UK, your refund depends on when you cancel.
Please make sure you have insurance to cover the cost of unexpected circumstances such as illness.
Please see the Terms and Conditions for our full cancellation policy.
Yes. Please tell reception and your certificate will be prepared before you finish your course.
It depends on your level and your reason for taking an exam:
Talk to us at reception or with a teacher during your speaking test for advice!
Many kinds. We have events from live music gigs and Ceilidhs (Scottish dancing) to BBQs, cinema visits and climbing Arthur’s Seat (a big hill with beautiful views).
Our current and former students. You can also bring your friends or family (unless it is an ‘exclusive’ event for current Alba students).
It varies. We make sure some are free for those on a tight budget. They rarely cost more than £10. Alba English School does not make any profit from the Social Programme.
Tell reception that you want to attend.
It is a weekly session where a teacher meets with students to check their English CVs.
Please come to reception. You will receive a CV checklist, email us your CV and then have a one-to-one revision session with a teacher.
The Alba Student Portal is our wonderful online learning portal for our students. You can:
Don’t worry, come and talk to us at reception. We can show you!