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FAQs

Find out more about studying on our English 16+ courses by reading through our frequently asked questions. 

Still have questions? Contact us and we will be happy to help.

Students at Bell Cambridge

 

Our courses

What makes Bell’s teaching approach different to other schools?

We teach English to adults aged 16+ at our centres in Cambridge and London and to young learners aged 7-17  at schools around the UK. We also teach in English to University Foundation students and international teachers. 

For over 60 years Bell has provided learning experiences to students from around the world, helping to change the lives of over one million people. This has led us to develop ‘The Bell Way’. 

Our unique teaching approach has been influenced by six decades of experience and shaped by an Emeritus Professor from the University of Cambridge. The six principles below are our commitment to your success; they will make you a better learner, build your confidence and ensure you achieve your learning goals.

  • High expectations, we support you to do the very best you can
  • Clarity of learning, we have clear learning goals and teaching methods
  • Unique individual, we treat every student as an individual
  • Learning everywhere, you will learn in and out of the classroom
  • Assessment as learning, we assess and provide feedback about your progress every step of the way
  • Organisational learning, we continue to learn as an organisation to provide you with the very best learning experiences

With The Bell Way you can be sure you will succeed.

What English 16+ courses can I take with Bell?

At Bell, there is a course to suit everyone. All of our courses can be personalised to suit your learning goals.

Choose from:

Continue your learning by adding a combination of modules to develop your English both in and outside of the classroom.

Choose from:

  • Skills
  • Business Studies
  • 1 to 1 Tuition
  • Art and Design (summer only)
  • Language in Action (included with every English 16+ course)

Read more about creating your ideal English course.

Where can I study an English 16+ course with Bell?

You can choose from two of the most famous and iconic cities in the UK:

Cambridge is a traditional university city with a global reputation for academic excellence. Over a fifth of its residents are students, giving the city a modern, cosmopolitan feel. Our Cambridge school has been home to Bell for nearly 60 years; it offers a picturesque study environment and a supportive student community. Located within easy reach of the historic city centre, it features impressive study, social and leisure facilities including a large contemporary learning centre, student games room and indoor and outdoor dining areas.

London is one of the most diverse and multicultural cities in the world. Study in the capital and be inspired by the unique combination of rich history and global innovation. Located in the centre of Bloomsbury, among some of London’s greatest universities, Bell London provides a welcoming and inspirational learning environment. All of our students benefit from small classes and the fantastic family atmosphere at the school. Bell London is within easy reach of Holborn tube station and iconic sights such as the British Museum, Covent Garden and Oxford Street.

What is included in my Bell course fee?

All courses include:

  • Course materials
  • Regular 1 to 1 tutorials
  • Access to our learning centres and a wide range of resources
  • Free scanning, printing and photocopying
  • Free Wifi
  • Free and impartial Higher Education Advisory Service
  • A free weekly programme of workshops, social activites and trips (Language in Action)
  • Use of sports facilities (Cambridge only)
  • Comprehensive insurance

How much study will be expected in my own time?

Bell students are encouraged to learn everywhere, so your learning never stops when you are immersed in the language! We do expect commitment from you to achieve your goals – every week, every lesson and in every activity. This ensures you get the best from your course and time with us. There is daily homework and our learning centres have a range of resources to help you.

How much support will be available?

Your wellbeing is our top priority, so during your studies you will receive excellent support both in and outside of the classroom. You will have regular 1 to 1 tutorials with your teacher, where you will receive feedback and set personal goals. Our student services team are here to help you with anything you need during your stay. If you have any concerns or problems, you can speak with them in confidence. Read more about our student welfare.

Our learning centres are equipped with the latest resources to help you with your studies including: Bell learning materials, books (fiction, non-fiction and audio), dictionaries, DVDs, daily newspapers and weekly magazines. All resources are colour-coded by language level and there is a dedicated section for business learning materials. The learning centre team are available to help with any requests and guidance on which materials to use.

How many students are in each class?

Our class sizes are small so you get the most out of every class. 

Maximum class sizes:

Course Bell Cambridge London
Effective English 12 10
IELTS Exam Preparation 12 10
Cambridge English: FCE 12 N/A
Cambridge English: FCE (fast-track) 12 N/A
Cambridge English: CAE  12 N/A
Cambridge English: CAE (fast-track) 12 N/A
Business English N/A 10
1 to 1 Tuition 1 1

What is the age range of students in the class?

Students on our English 16+ courses range from 16 to 68, with an average age of 24 at Bell Cambridge and 30 at Bell London. We will always make students feel welcome and will find a course that’s right for you.

What is the nationality mix at Bell?

We have a diverse nationality mix at both our Cambridge and London schools. From May 2015 to April 2016, 62 nationalities attended our courses at Bell Cambridge and 47 nationalities attended courses at Bell London.

 

Nationality mix at Cambridge and London

Is there a social activities programme at Bell?

Yes, our Language in Action programme.  Language in Action is our free programme of workshops, social activities and trips designed to encourage all students to practise the skills they have learnt in class. We believe that the best way to improve is by communicating in English as much as possible during your stay. The more you practise the better your English will be. All of our structured activities have clear learning objectives to help you maximise your learning outside the classroom.

 

I am under 18 are these courses suitable for me?

Yes, our adult English courses are open to students 16+. Students who are under 18 are given special care and attention. If you are under 18, you will stay with one of our host families to ensure you are supported outside of school hours. You will be given a curfew of 11pm and advised of the advised of the UK laws regarding under 18s on arrival. In addition, you will meet with our student services team weekly to discuss your experience and any concerns you’re having.

Bell also offers a wide range of young learner English courses for students aged 7-17 in the UK. Find out more about our Young Learner courses. 

What are the school rules?

Both Bell Cambridge and Bell London follow the same school rules. These rules are to ensure students benefit from their time at Bell and in the UK and apply to behaviour in School, on Bell activities and in Bell accommodation. Any students breaking these rules, or English law, or persisting in serious anti-social behaviour will be disciplined and may be asked to leave the school and their Bell-arranged accommodation with no refund of fees.  

Bell accepts no responsibility for a student's personal actions to another party while at Bell, or for the supervision of students out of lessons or scheduled activities.

All students must:

  • Attend all classes, complete assignments and homework, unless they are ill
  • Inform the School of any changes of address or circumstances while at Bell
  • Obey Bell procedures as explained at the beginning of their course
  • Observe fire procedures
  • Comply with all UK laws and visa restrictions.

Students aged 18 and over must:

  • Behave appropriately towards students aged under 18 who are considered to be children in UK law
  • Smoke only in designated areas
  • Never buy alcohol, cigarettes (including electronic cigarettes) or tobacco for students under 18 or give alcohol to under 18s
  • Not allow students under 18 to visit Bell adult residences for students aged 18 and over.

Students aged 16 and 17 are considered to be children in the UK and must:

  • Return to their Bell accommodation by 23:00 hours every evening
  • Inform their homestay or Residential Supervisor in advance if they are taking part in a Bell trip or activity that will finish later than 23:00
  • Not buy or consume alcohol, cigarettes (including electronic cigarettes) or tobacco as the minimum age to purchase this in the UK is 18
  • Have written permission from their parent or guardian to join day trips booked by Bell, but organised and run by an Independent travel company.
  • Not be absent overnight or go on holiday without informing Reception who will contact parents or guardians for written permission. (Please note: Bell does not book overnight trips for students aged 16 and 17)
  • Not move out of Bell accommodation without written permission from their parent or guardian
  • Not visit any Bell residences for students aged 18 and over.

We reserve the right to ask students to leave Bell immediately and with no refund of fees for these reasons:

  • Not attending classes regularly
  • Serious anti-social behaviour (e.g. verbal abuse or rudeness, drunkenness, sexual harassment, violence, assault)
  • Bullying, intimidating or threatening behaviour of any sort
  • Proof of or admission to an illegal act (e.g. theft, assault, drink driving, possession or use of illegal drugs or offensive weapons – such as knives, guns or other object with intent to cause harm etc.)
  • Breaking any UK law
  • Interference with fire or safety equipment and procedures
  • Misuse of computers or downloading of any offensive material
  • Any other act that brings the name of Bell into disrepute
  • Refusal to obey reasonable requests from a member of Senior Staff

The Learning and Teaching Manager, Principal or Student Services Manager may recommend that a student is not re-admitted to Bell.  Reasons for this include the following:

  • Lack of academic progress in spite of everyone’s best efforts
  • Illness making it impossible for the student to get full benefit from the course
  • Poor attendance and lack of commitment to the previous course
  • A poor disciplinary record in class
  • Behaviour in School or accommodation which is inappropriate, disruptive or disturbing to others
  • Failure to pay fees
  • Breaking any UK law

Discipline: If the problem concerns behaviour in class your teacher will speak to you. If there is no improvement, a senior member of Bell staff will speak to you. A formal warning may be given to you, and your parents/sponsor will be informed. If there is a very serious problem you may be asked to leave Bell (expelled) without a refund of fees.

I’d like to attend a course at Bell. How do I enrol?

You can book your course online using our booking form. Alternatively, you can speak to a member of our multilingual customer support team by calling 0044 1223 275598 or emailing enquiries@bellenglish.com. We look forward to hearing from you!

I represent an organisation/school, do you offer bespoke group courses?

Yes we do. We’ve worked with many schools and leading organisations all over the world. Speak to our dedicated groups team and they will work with you to create a course especially for your group’s goals. Every aspect of the course can be tailored to suit you, from the lessons and timetable to the accommodation and social programme.

Call 0044 1223 275598, email groups@bellenglish.com or fill in the contact form to find out more. 

Tripos Court

 

Accommodation

 

Where can I live while studying with Bell?

Bell offers accommodation options to suit every student, from modern student residences to welcoming family homestays, all regularly inspected by our dedicated accommodation team.

Accommodation in Cambridge

Accommodation in London

Speak to our multilingual customer support team to discuss the best option for you. Call us on 0044 1223 275598, email enquiries@bellenglish.com or fill in the contact form

 

How far will I have to travel to school?

All accommodation is within a reasonable distance of the school. We have accommodation on campus or other accommodation, which is only a short walk or public transport journey away. The exact distance will depend on which accommodation you choose:

Accommodation in Cambridge

Accommodation in London

What happens if there is an emergency outside school hours?

We have a 24-hour phone number for you to contact in emergencies. The emergency phone number is easily accessible and can be found on your Bell student card. Our student services team will explain our emergency procedures with you during your student induction. If you are staying with a homestay family, they will also be available to help you.

Visa and travel

 

Visa and travel

 

Do I need a visa to study at Bell?

To find out if you need a visa to study in the UK, please visit the UK Visas and Immigration website. If you do need a visa there are a number of options. Visit our Visa Guidance section for more information. Bell cannot apply for visas for you, so if you do need a visa you must apply for this yourself. Bell is a Tier 4 Sponsor on the UK Home Office Register of Sponsors.

Which documents will I need for travel to the UK?

  • Passport    
  • EHIC card    
  • Spending money/credit card/travellers' cheques    
  • Your accommodation contact details    
  • Travel information for getting to your final destination    
  • Letter of Authorisation to Travel completed and signed by a parent or guardian (for under 18s only).

For non-EU students:

  • Passport
  • Visa
  • Return ticket
  • Bell Certificate of Admission
  • Sponsorship letters, if appropriate
  • Proof of payment of fees
  • Proof that you can financially support yourself while in Britain
  • Proof of accommodation and contact details
  • Spending money/credit card/travellers' cheques   
  • Travel information for getting to the Cambridge or London school
  • Letter of Authorisation to Travel completed and signed by a parent or guardian (for under 18s only).

How do I get to Bell Cambridge when I arrive in the UK?

By taxi:

For a smooth arrival, you can book an airport transfer with us to take you direct to the Bell Cambridge school. You can book this via the online booking form as part of your course reservation or email enquiries@bellenglish.com.

By coach

Regular coaches run from Heathrow, Gatwick, Stansted and Luton airports to Cambridge city centre . Visit National Express for more information.

By train

There are regular trains from all major airports to London and a frequent service to Cambridge from London Liverpool Street station, London Kings Cross station and Stansted Airport. Please use the following links for more information:

If you are arriving by Eurostar, you can walk from St Pancras International to London Kings Cross (a 5 minute walk) and travel by train to Cambridge.

Visit our travel information page for further details on how to get to Bell Cambridge.

How do I get to Bell London when I arrive in the UK?

By taxi

For a smooth arrival, you can book an airport transfer with us to take you direct to the Bell London school. You can book this via the online booking form as part of your course reservation or email enquiries@bellenglish.com.

By coach

Regular coaches run from Heathrow, Gatwick, Stansted and Luton airports to the centre of London . Visit National Express for more information.

Arriving by train

There are regular trains from all major airports to London. Please use the following links for more information:

If you are arriving by Eurostar, you can take the underground to the Bell London.

Visit our travel information page for further details on how to get to Bell London.

Bell Education Trust is a Tier 4 Sponsor on the UKVI register of sponsors
Private Further Education logo
English UK Member
Accredited by the British Council for the teaching of English