FAQ

Why online learning?

Online learning is a great way for elementary to advanced students (A1-C2) to improve their language skills at a much faster pace than it is possible in face-to-face traditional lessons. This approach is especially convenient for busy professionals and full-time parents who have a limited amount of time to spend on language classes. Time always goes by very quickly when learning online with our outstanding trainers!

How long does a lesson last?

When learning online, 60 minutes is sufficient as it is a much more concentrated approach. It indeed eliminates most common distractions which occur during face-to-face lessons as it creates a more focused environment for the participant (especially when using headphones to block all surrounding noises.) 30 minutes is the minimum amount of time to learn and digest new information. The following 30 minutes give you time to put your new knowledge into practice and really start connecting the dots. 


How long does it take to be able to have a functional level of French/English?

Basic proficiency in French or English (i.e. level A2) normally takes between 3 to 6 months through immersion, which means living in a French/English speaking country and surrounding yourself almost entirely by French speakers. Realistically speaking, expats generally need between 9 months to 1 year to develop a good command of basic French/English and feel comfortable interacting in French/English in their everyday life.

It also depends on how much time and effort you put into learning French/English. Motivation is a huge factor in learning a language. Those who learn a language because they’re interested in communicating with others, traveling, or experiencing another culture are more willing to handle the rigors of learning. Practicing everyday versus weekly and taking private lessons with a great teacher will inevitably speed up the process. Of course, someone who dedicates an hour a day will learn more than a person who commits to only 60 minutes a week.

I recommend dedicating 3 to 6 months (20 to 40 private lessons) to make some real improvement on a specific skill (pronunciation, email writing, preparation for a job interview, improving your verb tenses, etc.) if you do not have time to practice a lot outside our appointments.


I must pass the A2 French level test to get my Permis C / Swiss naturalisation.  Can you help me prepare for this?

Absolutely! We have been helping several other expats who had to take this conversation test and are very happy to say that they all succeeded!

We have a special program especially designed for English speaking expats who must pass this test.  Please get in touch with us for more information.


I am not sure if learning French/English online is for me. I think I prefer face-to-face lessons.

If you have never taken lessons online before, it is very normal to be a bit reluctant or skeptical about this learning method. As long as you have a fairly recent computer (best option), tablet or smartphone, a good internet connection, and the latest version of Skype or Zoom, we assure you that the experience will be very enjoyable. We would even dare to say that you might never want to attend another face-to-face lesson again!

We would be very happy to offer you a free trial lesson of 30 minutes to better understand our style of teaching and see if you feel comfortable with your new teacher. Contact us for more information!

We also invite you to read more about the benefits of learning online.


I am afraid to speak French/English because it seems so difficult to pronounce.

Your reaction is very normal and part of the challenge of learning a new language. Most English speaking expats are afraid to be ridiculed or misunderstood when speaking French. Same thing for native French speakers trying to speak English without the appropriate pronunciation tools.

The good news is that there are diction rules which can be easily integrated in your day to day conversation. Our coaches will provide you with the right tools to improve your French/English pronunciation from the very first class!

Why isn’t it taught anywhere else? Well, not many language schools are founded by opera singers like Isabelle! She indeed had to attend many diction classes (French, English, Italian, and German) as part of her degree in Music & Languages at McGill University (Montreal, Canada). Over the years, she has created special French pronunciation tips designed for English speaking expats who are struggling to speak French as well as English pronunciation tricks for native French speakers.

You still aren’t convinced? Watch one of Isabelle’s fun and useful pronunciation tip videos.


I would like to improve my French/English conversation, but don’t have the budget to afford private lessons. Do you offer an alternative?

french-friday

Yes, we do! We offer group conversation lessons (3-4 participants) on Zoom. If you are looking for more opportunities to speak French/English, but need a structured approach, this is the perfect setting for you!

In addition, Isabelle hosts a free French conversation event every month which is called French Friday. The whole point is to put into practice what you have learned in your previous or current French classes and to dare to speak French while having fun! We discuss an interesting and useful topic for your everyday life and I guide you through the process by offering my help, tips, and advice, whenever necessary.

(For your information, a Lunch & Learn in English for native French speakers will start in mid-September 2017.)

We also recommend subscribing to our Newsletter to receive our Free French/English Survival Guide as well as Isabelle’s weekly tips on how to better integrate French and English in your everyday life.

We also invite you to follow our FB page for more exciting news, quizzes, articles, posts, and fun tips such as our Monday Laugh (we share a new funny expression in French, every Monday!).


I don’t live in Switzerland. Can we still work together?

Absolutely! As we provide online learning, it is easy and a great pleasure to work with francophiles from all over the world!


Will I receive a certificate or diploma at the end of my course?

Prêt à Parler does not offer certificate or diploma courses at the moment, but our teachers are committed to helping you reach the level you need.

Previously, we helped clients to successfully prepare for job interviews, business meetings, conferences, and to pass the OSEO French Test (to obtain the Permis C and/or Swiss naturalisation).


I’m a real beginner and I’m scared that my teacher will laugh at me.

Learning a foreign language is a big challenge which most people will have to face in this day and age to stay competitive on the professional market. It is a wonderful, mind-opening experience when done with the right teacher. 

Prêt à Parler’s multilingual coaches understand the challenge you are facing when learning a new language for the first time. They have been in your situation before and therefore can use English or French as a support language whenever necessary. 

Our understanding bilingual coaches can anticipate what you are trying to express and are dedicated to giving you the right tools to get you speaking from the very first class. 


I Want To Learn French Online

I Want To Improve My English Online


Why choosing Prêt à Parler?