This page contains comments from Prolingua instructors, comments from students who have taken Prolingua courses, and an evaluation made by an independent research company.

Comments from Instructors:

All Prolingua instructors are professionals who must have a minimum of 4,000 hours of teaching experience before being employed by Prolingua. This experience is chiefly acquired at other training institutions in Tokyo, making our instructors uniquely qualified to make comparisons between Prolingua and other training companies. We present these comments because we feel they constitute invaluable information for training managers in Tokyo who are trying to sort out the wheat from the chaff.

Note: Some Prolingua instructors currently work part time for other training companies, and because of this, it is inappropriate to include their names. Additionally, comments made in anonymity are often the most honest.

"For the last six years I have been teaching in Tokyo. I have seen the English industry change and evolve from a post bubble economy leisure service to a serious competitive based industry. The current recession has effectively been weeding out the schools of lesser content. Prolingua has proven itself to me to be one of the schools that is coming out on top. For teachers, since our livelihood is dependent on schools that have a future, this is most important. My personal experience has been that unlike most schools that I have worked for where the lessons are concentrated on making sure the students have a good time, and learn a little too, Prolingua's approach actually works. The course material is well designed and balanced to be both enjoyable and effective. The students actually learn and improve their English, while still being in an environment that is pleasant for both the students and the teachers. I am happy to work for a company that is so dedicated to education and maintains it's commitment to its students and teachers."

"I am proud to work for Prolingua. The other companies I worked for in Tokyo left me often embarrassed teaching what I thought was a useless, inane curriculum. I believe that they were taking advantage of the overwhelming demand to learn English, but responding to that demand with little or no genuine effort to produce significant results, except on their own financial statements. Prolingua is immeasurably superior. I have seen the difference between teaching with the outstandingly creative and useful Prolingua curriculum and teaching with the others' far inferior material. Without exception, students respond best to Prolingua classes. An inordinate amount of effort by many talented, hardworking, professional people has resulted in what I sincerely believe to be the best English-training company in Tokyo."

"Absolutely the best material I have ever used. I am proud to work for this company."

"I have been teaching English in Japan for seven years and the Prolingua English teaching system is the best I have come across. In my view, there are two basic reasons for this. Firstly, most English schools rely on teachers robotically following a generalized text book. This is useful when the instructor is inexperienced and is just off the plane, but it has disadvantages - the worst one occurs when the students hit a point of confusion and the teacher continues to plow through his/ her text, leading students into a mental bog and consequent disillusionment. In Prolingua, the instructor is firstly, experienced enough to notice when students hit some confusion and secondly, with this system, the instructor can push the students through the perplexing parts until they reach the light of understanding. Secondly, the Prolingua system (particularly IFPAD) is rapidly paced so students are fully extended in lessons and learn faster, unlike other methods which can be slow and dreary."

"I have been in Japan eleven years now, and during that time have worked for a lot of companies and institutions. None of them come near Prolingua in terms of professionalism: in the way the company treats its employees, in its approach to the client, and in its mission to offer the best possible service. Prolingua is also a demanding company; of its teaching staff and of its clients, and the students in the classroom. But this is how excellence is achieved, as Prolingua is leading the way."

"I have been an English communications trainer in Japan for over nine years. I have worked for a number of firms, but I find that Prolingua's methods are the most innovative and effective that I've seen."

"I have taught for a few companies specializing in instructing business people. The big difference has been the quality of the texts. I feel comfortable in the classroom using Prolingua texts because they are geared to the needs of Japanese people. I feel like a fraud using some of the other companies texts because they are either off-the-shelf generalized texts or of very low quality."

"The back up support at Prolingua is excellent. When I go back to Prolingua staff and ask them to change the materials because they are not suited to the students needs, I get a flurry of activity and more appropriate materials. When I go back to staff at some other companies I get excuses and a directive to do my best."

"One company I have worked for charges clients a much higher rate, but pays the teacher 3,500 yen per hour. Prolingua charges less, provides high quality texts and pays its teachers 40% more. As a teacher, I would recommend Prolingua without hesitation."

"A company at which I once taught full time, regularly advertises in the Japan Times. It gets many inexperienced teachers and with minimal training sends them out to teach. The teachers who do very well move on to better companies after a short period of time. The average teachers stay with the company and the very poor quality teachers are not given more work. Prolingua only takes proven performers with 4000 hours of experience. If I were to chose a company to teach my employees, which company do you think I would chose?"

"Appropriate curriculum geared toward students needs which truly improves students' English."

Comments From Students:

The following comments come from questionnaires that are filled out by students at the end of their courses.

"The instructor created a very enjoyable atmosphere that encouraged all students to participate and get good speaking practice. This training was the best that I have ever taken. It was a strict class, but it really taught me how to express my ideas more effectively."

"In our class, we learned a great amount of useful expressions for Business English. Another good thing about Prolingua lessons is that we learn about western business culture, as well as current business topics, for example, we learned about finance and computers."

"All materials were highly relevant to our work and we can put what we learned into practice immediately."

"Not only learning "Negotiation Skills" but also doing IFPAD was an excellent system because we had to practice the useful expressions for negotiations until we could speak them fluently. IFPAD® really helped us to improve our listening comprehension skills."

"In previous training classes I have taken, the time went by slowly, but Prolingua uses a variety of fast paced oral drills and interactive materials that make the time in our two-hour class fly by."

"The instructor spoke only in English, so we had to really concentrate in our lessons. I think this is a good system and that is why I prefer native instructors to Japanese instructors. It was a very fun class. The explanations were easy to understand and I learned a lot."

"The instructor knows Japanese people and our business very well. His sense of humor was great."

"This was a very enjoyable class. I was encouraged to speak English without being overly concerned about making grammar mistakes."

"The instructor takes into account each student's level and structures the class to accommodate us."

"The Instructor answered all of our questions very clearly. I thought this was really a great course."

"In my private lessons, my instructor writes down my mistakes on a note pad and gives it to me at the end of each lesson. I am supposed to write these down in my own notebook so that I can remember the grammar better. My instructor sometimes even gives me small quizzes from my notebook to be sure that I have memorized it."

"Guided readers were very good and I was able to read them on the train everyday. It is generally hard to find well designed English text books, however, I found Prolingua's text very user friendly and suitable for use in the corporate environment."

"The IFPAD drill was highly effective. It taught me how to use basic grammatical structures."

"Prolingua materials were obviously written for Japanese business people, and focused on the common mistakes that we Japanese make. The explanations were very clear and easy to understand."

Analysis from a Research Company

A large, internationally known research company evaluated Prolingua as well as several other business English training companies. All participating companies taught a standard two hour lesson to the same single student who was at a high intermediate level. The lessons were videotaped from behind a see-through mirror and later evaluated. This research company, which has asked that we not give out their name, provided Prolingua with these notes from their analysis: