One of the world’s most famous paintings (and it’s in Scotland!)

We all know there are lots of great things about visiting another country to study English.  Not only does your English improve, but you get to meet other people from all over the world and do and see lots of new things.  One of the many things that our students tell us is how much they enjoy their trips to old castles, houses, museums and art galleries.

Anyone learning English in Scotland will almost certainly be based in either Glasgow or Edinburgh(that’s why we have schools in each city!) and will, also almost certainly, visit the other city.  They are less than an hour apart by train and each is totally different.  But one thing you must see (apart from the Elephant House Café in Edinburgh, where JK Rowling began to write Harry Potter) is the painting that is probably the best-known and most famous work of art we have in Scotland.  

The painting in question is by the famous Spanish surrealist artist, Salvador Dali.  It’s “Christ of St John of the Cross” and it’s housed in the Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum in Glasgow.  The photo here was taken by one of our students, on a recent trip to Kelvingrove.

Dali painted this in 1951 and it was bought by the City of Glasgow in 1952, despite opposition from many local people who thought the price of £8,200 was too high and the money would be better spent on Scottish artists.  It is now worth at least £60million and Glasgow Council has turned down a bid of reputedly £80million from the Spanish government.

New website for Glasgow School of English

We are pleased to announce that the new website for Glasgow School of English will go live in February 2020.   We’ve spent the last six months working on a complete revision of the existing site.  Our new site will have a much improved facility for students and agents to book and pay for courses online, as well as essential information about Glasgow, Scotland, applying for a visa and student life, arts and culture. 

The screenshot below gives you a wee sneak preview of what the new site will look like.  The url for the new site will be the same as for the current site:

Will I be able to get … in Scotland?


One of the things we are often asked by people who are thinking about coming to study English in Scotland is, “will I be able to get…?”

The things we’re asked about are very varied.  For many students, it’s a question of whether they are able to get their preferred food in Glasgow or Edinburgh.  With increasing interest in vegetarian and vegan meals, not to mention the major world religions’ requirement for specific foods (e.g. halal/kosher), this is an important issue for many people.

The good news is that if you come to Glasgow School of English (or our sister school, Global School of English in Edinburgh), you’ll be spoiled for choice!  We regularly publish links to local shops, restaurants and cafes where you can get every type of food and our supermarkets have a wide choice of vegetarian and vegan food too.  But you must also find time to try some of our Scottish food – you can even get vegetarian haggis! 

Similarly, we are often asked about religious tolerance in Scotland (“Will I be able to go to a mosque/synagogue, etc.?”).  Here too, the good news is that although this is traditionally a Christian country, we welcome people of all faiths and none.  If you are a Muslim, there is a wide selection of mosques; similarly, for Orthodox Christians there are a number of churches you can attend; and Jews have synagogues to visit in all our major cities. Again, you can find regular posts on our Facebook and Twitter pages with links to these religious places.  

If you are not sure about anything to do with living and studying in Scotland, please contact us and we’ll be pleased to help you.  You can email any questions you have to:

8 Nations in our Class of the Week!

We haven’t publicised our Class of the Week award for some time (although it’s still been running, as you can see on our Facebook page), so we thought that this week we’d tell you about this exceptional bunch of students.

Brian is their teacher and they are studying at the Upper Intermediate level. The students are: Davide, Amirah, Laura, Serena, Tamara, Ahmed, Paula, Stefania, Cristian, Hasan and Fathy. They come from eight different countries, are all excellent students and we are really enjoying helping them improve their English.

Class of the week

Class of the week, 24th May

This week’s class of the week, nominated by their teacher Paul, is the Pre-Intermediate A class. Paul nominated them as they work really well together, are studious and have good craic (Paul is from Ireland!).

The students in the class this week were – Abdullah, Ahlam, Mohammed, Emanuele, Rossella, Constantin, Giulia, Miroslava and Anderson.

Important news for students from South Korea, Japan and Singapore

From 13 May 2019, nationals from Japan, South Korea and Singapore entering the UK will be encouraged to use e-gates instead of seeing an immigration official.

People who have enrolled on courses in the UK, but did not apply for a study visa before travelling, cannot use the e-gates. These students should make sure they see an immigration officer to get the correct stamp in their passports which will allow them to study.

Students without a visa in their passport may not be able to enrol on their course if they use the e-gates.

This week’s Class of the Week

Advanced class, Glasgow School of English
Advanced Class, Glasgow School of English

This week’s Class of the Week is the Advanced Class!

They were nominated by their teacher, Jessie, as they always have very interesting and engaging conversations and have a great attitude.

The students in the advanced class this week were – Mohammad, Ayman, Lincoln Benjamin, Carmen, Tainara, Viktor, Olga and Molly.

Congratulations to them all!

Class of (last) week!

Our “class of the week” initiative is proving very popular with students and teachers alike! However, last week, it was an afternoon class that won the certificate, so we didn’t have time to tell you. This means there will be two classes of the week this week, although one is from last week! We hope that all makes sense…

Anyway, the class that was chosen to be Class of the Week last week was the Pre-Intermediate PM class. Their teacher, Joanna, nominated them as they work really hard and really enjoy learning English. Congratulations to them all!

The students in the class last week were – Abdullah, Tariq, Maram, Faisal, Bdoor, Tahani, Diego, Rocio Cecelia, Valerio, Antoine, Rosalia Eugenia, Andres Mauricio, Pascal, Fabiana, Miguel Eduardo.

This week’s class of the week

This week’s class of the week is the Pre-Intermediate B class! Here some of them are pictured with their teacher, Jess.

Jess nominated them because they have worked hard and have made her laugh a lot this week!

The students in the class this week are Bayan, Tariq, Omar, Faisal, Diego, Tiziana, Antoine, Gerhard, Rosalia, Pascal and Miguel.

What DO our students think about Glasgow School of English?

At Glasgow School of English we like to think that we try very hard to provide good teaching, interesting activities and helpful support and advice.  Over the years, we have discovered that the best way to find out if we are getting things right is to ask our students, so every three months that’s what we do!

Our latest survey covers the first three months of 2019.  We ask our students a range of questions covering the teaching, the materials and books we use and the trips they have.   We’re pleased to say that the results are very good. All (100%) of our students like the friendliness of the School and they would all recommend us to their friends. 93% agree (or strongly agree) that the teachers make the lessons interesting and challenging and 92% like our trips and events. When it comes to the crucial question of whether their time spent with us has actually improved their English, 96% say it has.  You can see the full results in the table below, followed by some of the comments the students made about their time with us.  We have not given the students’ names, but have shown which country they are from and, as you can see, we really do have students from all over the world!

Thank you for all. (Spain)

The teachers are nice, kind. The students are really kind. The office staff are really hard working. I really liked the creativity in my morning classes. It made me have fun and learn. (Brazil)

It was great! (Hungary)

What an experience! (Italy)

The office staff were really helpful and they listened. My teacher was really great. I really loved this week with her. (France)

Thanks for this amazing experience! (Italy)

What I really liked about the school was how welcoming it is, giving support whenever it was needed. Wednesday’s conversation meetings are also great (Brazil)

Thank you. (Saudi Arabia)

I spend very good time. (France)

Thank you! (France)

Thank you for everything! And for printing my boarding passes. (Estonia)

I really liked the school. people, city and everyone. I really wished I could stay for more weeks. (Netherlands)

Brian is the best teacher ever. (Finland)

Everything was amazing! Thanks! (Latvia)