How do I use my Dashboard?
Your Dashboard is your personal map of the platform. It shows you:
- The level you are working at (Everyone starts at 'Elementary'.)
- The number of credits you have (Everyone starts with 10 free credits.)
- The modules you have completed
- The number of trophies you have earned
- The number of trophies you need to move up to the next Rank
Familiarise yourself with your Dashboard in 3 steps:
- Set your preferences.
- Browse through the levels (Elementary, Intermediate, Advanced) and the categories (Pronunciation, Grammar, Conversation). This will give you a good idea of the structure and content of the Platform.
- Choose a module in each category. For each module, open and browse the 'Study' page, then the 'Exercise' page, then the 'Test' page. This will give you a good idea of the method.
Which module should I start with?
Whatever your level of English is, it is really important not to have any gaps in your knowledge and active usage of the basics. That is why we recommend that everyone should start by taking the Test of the very first lesson: Elementary Pronunciation Lesson 1.
The higher your level of written and spoken English when you start, the more quickly you will progress through the material. You are just revising and filling in the gaps, until you reach the section of the Platform where you need to study every module in detail.
So, proceed like this:
- Take the test for Pronunciation Module 1 (Alphabet).
- If you pass the test, move on to the test for the next Pronunciation Module (Numbers), and so on.
- If you fail some sections of a test, follow the recommendations for revision, and take the test again. Pass it and move on.
- If you fail all sections of a test, go to the 'Study' section and study the lesson in detail, then do all the written and oral exercises in the 'Exercise' section, before you take the test again. Only move on if you pass the test.
- It is important to work through the material in this order:
- Elementary: Pronunciation Grammar Conversation
- Intermediate: Pronunciation Grammar Conversation
- Advanced: Pronunciation Grammar Conversation
- Avoid taking a test again without understanding your mistakes and revising the recommended sections. If you progress through the material with gaps in your knowledge, the later lessons will be difficult for you to follow. This is because each module builds on the contents of previous modules to take your language skills one step further.
- Each test has a minimum pass rate of between 70% and 85%. However, we encourage you to always aim to get 100% on each test. The higher you can set your own standards, the more fluent your written and spoken English will be when you complete all the modules.
How should I work through each type of lesson?Pronunciation Modules
In Pronunciation modules, you learn about the sounds, stress patterns, and intonation patterns of Standard British English (Received Pronunciation). These modules help you to develop good listening skills and a clear pronunciation so you can understand native speakers, and so everyone can understand you.
This is how you should work through each Pronunciation module:
- Start with 'Study':
- Read the explanations.
- Listen and repeat the examples of each sound / pattern out loud several times.
- Go to 'Exercise'.
There are two types:
- 'dictation' (listen & write) to work on your listening skills.
- 'speaking' that uses voice recognition software to test and improve your pronunciation:
- Listen to the teacher’s model several times.
- Record yourself saying the same thing. Record yourself as many times as necessary until you get a .
- When you have finished all the 'speaking' exercises successfully, listen to the recording of your own voice. This helps build your confidence to speak in front of other people.
- Finish with the 'Test' to check your listening comprehension.
In Grammar modules, you learn all the important grammatical structures in English. The example sentences and exercises for different grammatical structures contain common vocabulary and expressions appropriate to the level you are studying. This allows you to learn or review essential vocabulary at the same time. These modules help you to improve all your skills: reading, listening, writing and speaking.
This is how you should work through Grammar modules:
- Start with 'Study':
- Read the explanations and examples (and take notes).
- Watch the video lesson to hear the explanations again with new examples (and take more notes).
- Read through your notes, and if something is not clear, read the explanations again until you have a good understanding of the topic.
- Go to 'Exercise':
- Choose (Multiple Choice), or type your answer.
- If you make mistakes as you type, our software warns you and helps you to get it right, until you get a .
- Press the 'Play' button that appears after the to hear the teacher's recording of the correct answer.
- Repeat the correct answer out loud before going on to the next exercise.
- When you have finished all the written exercises successfully, listen to and repeat all the correct answers out loud one more time.
- Finish with the 'Test' to check your assimilation of the grammatical structure.
In Conversation modules, you focus on expanding your range of vocabulary and expressions in a variety of everyday topics. The dialogues include the grammatical structures that you have studied in the Grammar lessons so you can continue to review and practise them in different contexts. As the dialogues are voice-recorded for you, you continue to work on your listening comprehention and pronunication too.
This is how you should work through Conversation modules:
- Start with 'Study':
- Read the Dialogue first, and look up the words and expressions that are new for you using the Dictionary / Translation feature.
- Make a note of these new expressions and their definitions. (use PEN if you are a Gold member.)
- Listen to and repeat each sentence of the dialogue out loud several times.
- Go to 'Exercise'.
- Fill in the gaps from memory to reconstruct the same dialogue that you studied earlier.
- Press the 'play' button that appears after the to hear and repeat the teacher's recording of each sentence one more time.
- Finish with the 'Test' to check your assimilation of the vocabulary and expressions.
To become a fluent and confident speaker, you must develop good listening skills and a clear pronunciation. This can only be achieved through many hours of oral practice. That is why, whichever type of lesson you are studying, we insist that you listen to and repeat everything that has been voice-recorded for you out loud several times. If you fail to do this and only focus on reading and writing, you will only become fluent in written English.
- Start with 'Study':
How should I use the study tools? (available to Gold members)1. Personal Electronic Notepad (PEN)
A very useful activity that greatly helps assimilation is making notes for yourself. These notes will also serve as an excellent revision tool when you want to refresh your memory on any of the topics.
To make this easy and efficient for you, we have added a notepad called PEN in the corner of every page on the Platform.
Every time you study written explanations, watch a video lesson, learn a dialogue, do written exercises, or read feedback on a test you have taken, make a note of the important points. As much as possible, try to make these notes in English instead of your native language. To reduce the necessity of using your native language:
Remember to save your notes before leaving the page you are working on.2. English-English Dictionary & Translation
- If you are studying a Grammar module, create personal examples of the structure that you are learning.
- If you are learning a dialogue, make a note of new words and expressions in the original context, and add their English definitions.
A really good habit to develop is looking up new words in an English-English dictionary instead of a bilingual dictionary. It is alright to use a little translation from time to time to make sure you have understood something, but your goal is to rely on English definitions and context as much as possible.
The Dictionary / Translation feature saves you time by allowing you to find the definition or translation of new words and expressions instantly without having to open additional pages on your device.
Every time you see a word you do not know:
Remember to set your native language as the Translation language in your Dashboard.
- Highlight the word.
- Right-click, and choose the 'Dictionary' option to read its definition.
- If you are still not sure, or if you need to translate a phrase, then highlight the word / phrase, and choose the 'Translation' option.
- When you have a clear idea of the meaning of a word or a phrase, write it down in PEN with its English definition and usage example.
When should I watch the exclusive videos?
Exclusive videos give you additional information, examples and exercises related to the more challenging pronunciation and grammar topics covered on the Platform. Some of them will help you to expand your vocabulary in specific areas too.
We add Exclusive videos periodically. So, keep an eye on the page where we list these videos. When you see that we have added a topic that you feel you need more clarification and practice in, watch the video, and make a note of any new information or interesting examples you find there.
How many credits do I get per day, and how can I get more?
Everyone gets 10 credits to get started.
- If you are a Silver Member, you will receive 2 credits / day (60 / month).
- If you are a Gold Member, you will receive 5 credits / day (150 / month).
- You will be rewarded with credits every time you move to a new Rank.
- You can earn extra credits by answering other members' language questions in the forums.
- You can also purchase additional credits in Store.
What can I use my credits for?
You can use your credits for downloads and live lessons:
- PDF downloads: 1
- Audio downloads: 2
- Video downloads: 3
- 30-minute private lesson: 175
- 45-minute private lesson: 250
- 60-minute private lesson: 325
Bronze members only:
- Unlock the 'Exercise' & 'Test' sections of a module: 5
- Access to an exclusive video: 20
How many ranks are there, and how do I collect trophies?
There are six ranks: Elementary, Intermediate, Advanced, Fluent, Master, and Grand Master. Everyone starts at the Rank of 'Elementary' with no trophies. Every time you take a test and pass it, you collect one, two or three trophies depending on how well you did on that test. If you achieve the minimum pass rate, you win one trophy; if you do a little better, you win two, and if you get 100% on your test, you win three trophies.
Once you have collected a certain number of trophies, you get promoted to the next rank until you reach the rank we call 'Fluent'. This is the equivalent of the C1 level as defined by the CEFR scale. At this level, you may still make occasional mistakes, but these do not stop you from expressing yourself naturally and effectively.
To reach the next Rank called 'Master', you need to pass a final test that shows full mastery of all the content on the platform. To reach the 'Grand Master' rank, which is the equivalent of being a 'near-native' speaker, you need a personal evaluation by the Head Teacher.
What kind of support will I have?Peer-to-Peer Support
It is a great idea to post your questions for your peers, and also to answer other members' questions. Explaining something you have understood to another community member is one of the best ways of checking and consolidating your own understanding of it.
Your answers are regularly checked by a teacher. If your answer is designated as a 'good', 'excellent' or 'exceptional' answer by us, you will be awarded free credits.Teacher Support
If your language question cannot wait for your peers to answer, you can raise a support ticket for a teacher. Silver Members will receive an answer within 48 hours, and Gold members receive an answer the same day.
If you have a number of questions on different topics, need an evaluation of your level, need advice on what to study and how, or need help with something specific like a test or a job interview, you can use your credits to book a private lesson with a teacher.