Technical ReportPDF Available


This study investigates motivational factors and language learning strategies involved in the process of learning English as a Foreign Language (EFL) in the elderly. This needs' analysis report is part of the implementation of ERASMUS+ project nr 2021-1-PL01-KA220-ADU-000033465.
This study investigates motivational factors and language learning strategies involved in the
process of learning English as a Foreign Language (EFL) in the elderly. This needs’
analysis report is part of the implementation of ERASMUS+ project nr 2021-1-PL01-KA220-
INTRODUCTION ......................................................................... 5
The importance of participation older individuals in social life and
maintenance of their learning activities; objectives of the ELENE
SENIORS AFTER COVID-19? .................................................... 9
Creation and expansion of a network of support and activation
institutions for the elderly
HOW TO ACTIVATE SENIORS ................................................ 10
Benefits of learning a foreign language, English, for seniors
FINDINGS ................................................................................. 14
Results of the survey administered to seniors regarding their
opinions about travel and learning English
CONCLUSION .......................................................................... 23
Why and how seniors are taught a foreign language
Project information
Project: Erasmus+
Project title: Elders learning English for Europe
Acronym: ELENE
Project No.: 2021-1-PL01-KA220-ADU-000033465
Project coordinator: Research and Innovation in Education Institute, [INBIE], Poland
Project partners:
The European Commission support for the production of this publication does not constitute an endorsement of
the contents which reflects the views only of the authors, and the Commission cannot be held responsible for any
use which may be made of the information contained therein.
The Polish Case
DOI: 10.5281/zenodo.6394513
Częstochowa, 23.03.2022
One of the most important social changes in recent years is related to the greater life expectancy
of people. Demographic aging is therefore a global phenomenon and one of the main challenges
facing the European Union.
The Council of the European Union advocates the right of older people to live in dignity, to
promote their independence and participation in social, economic and civic life, and to ensure
that older groups remain active as citizens, workers, consumers, carers and volunteers.
Accordingly, one of the measures proposed is the participation of older people in training and
lifelong learning activities.
It is obvious that the elderly group is increasingly traveling to other countries and interacting with
people who speak other languages. For this, it is very important to learn languages, and more
specifically English.
Thus, the goals of our project are:
- Improving and extending the offer of high-quality learning opportunities adapted to the
needs of older people in order to improve their multilingual (English language) and digital
- Expanding and developing the skills of trainers and other employees supporting the
elderly, in particular motivating them to participate in foreign language learning and
effective teaching.
The target group we target is twofold:
- Teachers / staff who support the teaching of foreign languages to older people.
- Older people interested in learning languages and with a low level of English proficiency.
For this purpose, the "Active XXI e-learning platform + mobile application" will be developed for
older people who learn English as a foreign language, learning material (textbook) for students
(seniors) and a methodology manual for trainers.
In addition, it is worth taking a broader look at the aspect of extending human life in Poland and
in the world. The seasonally-adjusted unemployment rate in Poland in January 2022 was 2.8
percent, the EU statistical office Eurostat reported. This means that the unemployment rate in
January was slightly lower than just before the end of 2021. In December, it was 2.9 percent.
According to Eurostat estimates, the number of unemployed in Poland amounted to 488,000. in
the first month of 2022. In December, it was 498 thousand. people. Among the EU countries, the
Czech Republic (2.2%) recorded a lower rate than Poland. Across the EU, the unemployment
rate in this respect stood at 6.2 percent in January. In turn, in the euro area countries,
unemployment averaged 6.8 percent.
Eurostat measures the harmonized unemployment rate as a percentage of the unemployed,
able to take up and actively seeking employment for all economically active people in the
country. It covers all people aged 15 to 74.
This methodology is different from that of the Central Statistical Office (GUS). According to the
data of the Polish office, the unemployment rate, measured as a percentage of the unemployed
registered in labour offices in relation to the total civilian population, was 5.5 percent at the end
of January 2022. In January 2022, the registered unemployment rate reached 5.6%. - it follows
from the preliminary data of the Ministry of Family and Social Policy. In the unemployment
registers at the end of January 2022, there were 162.6 thousand. (i.e. 14.9%) less unemployed
than at the end of January 2021. According to the Ministry of Labour and Social Policy, the
situation was the best in the Greater Poland Voivodeship, where unemployment was 3.2 percent.
The highest unemployment rate was recorded in the Warmian-Masurian Voivodeship (9.1%).
Analysing the area of unemployment, it is worth getting acquainted with the values of
entrepreneurship of Poles. According to the latest measurement made in mid-2020, the share
of people running young businesses in Poland in the adult population aged 18-64 decreased
from the low level of 5% in 2019 to 3.1% (with 1.6% of adults are at the stage of organizing their
business, and 1.5% have been running a business for 3 to 42 months). At the same time, the
share of Poles running mature companies that have been operating on the market for over 3.5
years has hardly changed - 12.2% compared to 13% in 2019. In relation to the number of adults,
this gives approximately 706 thousand. While 19 million ? people were running young
companies, 2.8 million people were running mature companies. It is worth remembering that 364
thousand from 706 thousands are projects at the stage of organization and that one person may
run more than one company with a different experience in the market.
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When unemployment is considered, it is worth comparing these values with the remuneration of
Poles. The year 2022 will bring another increase in the minimum wage. This time, its increase
will be PLN 210 and will amount to PLN 3010 gross, i.e. net 2210. It will be similar with the
minimum hourly rate, which will amount to 19.70 gross from January 2022, which will give 14.47
"per hand". These increases will also affect the national average. So far, it has amounted to PLN
5,852 gross (4,144.22 net), and from next year it will be PLN 5,922 gross (4,193.18 net)
On the other hand, when the employment of seniors is analysed, only 14 per cent of seniors of
Poles aged 60+ are professionally active. The vast majority of seniors are no longer
professionally active and live only on retirement or disability pension - according to the CBOS
survey. The survey showed that a total of 86 percent of respondents aged 60 and over do not
work at all. Only 10 percent work full-time. Older individuals aged 60-65 are the most
professionally active among seniors with 28 percent still working professionally, including 23
percent full time workers. In the group of seniors aged 66 to 74, there are three times less
employed (8%), while only 5% are employed and works full time.
CBOS pointed out that continuing to work at the age of 60 and over is related to the level of
education. Among people with primary education, 96 percent do not take up permanent or
occasional or part-time work. In the group of people with basic or secondary education, this
percentage drops to 85% and 84 % respectively. The most professionally active ones are seniors
with higher education. In this group, 22 percent are working full-time at the age of 60, and 70
percent do not take up any work.
The study emphasized that the primary source of income for seniors is only the retirement
pension. According to the survey, the structure of income of older people, i.e. the fact that the
vast majority of them only stay on retirement pension, affects their financial situation. 8% of their
households described the material conditions of their households as bad or rather bad. People
up to 59 years old were 14 percent and people in the age group of 6065 were 13 percent. 55
percent people who are under 60 years of age declare that they live in rather good or good
material conditions, and 37 percent describe them as average (neither good nor bad).
As indicated in the survey, analyses across age groups show that seniors are poorer than
younger generations. However, extreme situations, such as lack of food or lack of money for
3 z dnia 15.03.2022
basic needs, are less common among seniors, because they have a fixed monthly income
(retirement pension, disability pension).
The presented analyses used combined sets from 13 studies in the period between August 2015
and August 2016. In this way, a large sample (13,385) of adult Polish residents was obtained.
Seniors are presented against the background of the total number of respondents, as well as
compared to other age groups.
During and after the pandemic, the situation of Seniors in Poland changed. Due to the danger
of the disease, they were isolated and restricted from all activities. People aged 60 and over
constitute over 25.3% of the population of Poland. It is an extremely diverse and growing group
population. In 2030, it will constitute almost 30% of the total population, and in 2050 it will exceed
. 9.8% of people aged 65 and over, i.e. every tenth person at this age, lived in almost
complete social isolation before forced isolation during the pandemic.
Only 3% of people aged 65 and over used the Internet freely before the pandemic, and slightly
less than 27% used it in a limited way. Digital competences in the group of people aged 60-65
not examined by the Central Statistical Office of Poland (GUS) are slightly higher, but we can
conclude that before the pandemic about 1/3 of Polish seniors (about 3.2 million) used the
Internet, and only a few a percentage (not less than 3%) of all people 60+ did it in a smooth
manner, and at least a dozen percent of people aged 60and over (not less than 14%) in a
relatively functional manner. We can see a great need for digital education of older people,
especially from younger groups of seniors, as well as the need to expand competences by
digitally excluded people (those who are able to perform basic activities using a computer and
network, but have very limited skills and a high distrust of online tools).
Although it does not replace face-to-face relationships and activities, the Internet helped seniors
during the COVID-19 pandemic period. When the possible relationship between the mental
condition of respondents and Internet use are analysed, it can be seen that it is related to the
subjectively perceived psychophysical condition. Compared to people who did not use the
Internet, those who used the Internet less frequently described their psychophysical condition
4,praca-seniorow-wsrod-polakow-w-wieku-60-aktywnych-zawodowo-jest-tylko-14-proc.html z dnia 18.03.2022
Źródło: Wyniki bieżących bilansów ludności, GUS (2019).
as worse than before the pandemic. Moreover, people using the Internet more often declared
that the pandemic did not worsen their psychophysical condition.
The Internet and computer help to function better in times of crisis and eliminate the feeling of
loneliness. Most Internet users aged 60 and over feel the positive effect of using the network in
the COVID-19 era, but few feel a significant improvement in their own functioning thanks to the
use of the Internet. These data require more detail, but it can be concluded that although it does
not replace seniors' social contacts with other people, the Internet helps in the era of social
Digital education of seniors should be under the special care of both the state and
parliamentarians, regardless of political stance. Many seniors theoretically have access to the
Internet, but cannot use it, for example in the area of e-services. Digital competences can be
developed among others during courses offered by the Universities of the Third Age.
Cybercriminals come up with more and more audacious methods of extorting personal data or
gaining access to our credit card or savings deposited in a bank. Many of the techniques used
by fraudsters target the oldest people, but according to a study by the Financial Market
Development Foundation and Provident Polska, seniors are the most vigilant group on the web.
As much as 93 percent, consumers over 65 years of age can correctly recognize a fake e-mail.
This is the highest result of all age groups. Seniors should also be praised for their concern for
the security of their computers - every 2nd person from this group checks the device for malware
installed on it at least once a month
Several initiatives can be taken, including stimulating the activity of seniors - including
encouraging learning and travel. Our ELENE language study program for seniors fits perfectly
into the overall global support for seniors. An important element is the creation and expansion
of a network of support and activation institutions, through both nationwide initiatives and
programs and local activities .
The amount of funds allocated to the social activation of older people under voivodship programs
or subsidies from EU programs should be increased. Building awareness of the challenges of
aging and the needs of older people among younger generations is very important. Tools of
education and building empathy should be used, allowing children, adolescents and young
adults to understand the differences resulting from age (including dysfunctions), prepare them
for elementary support for elderly people from family and neighbourhood communities, as well
as for their own old age. It is necessary to introduce lessons on old age into the education
program, promote volunteering for the elderly, and develop local intergenerational projects. Also
at the level of higher education, subjects relating to old age should be introduced, not only for
students of social or medical faculties, but also for other students (e.g. polytechnic or
As can be concluded from the above data, seniors want to be active, they feel bad when the
number of limitations in using the benefits of life in society accumulates. In addition to the
exclusion and the inability to contact the local community; their travel situation have also
changed, mainly due to the Covid-19 pandemic. The current situation in the country, including
the outbreak of an armed attack by Russia on Ukraine, has a significant impact on tourists' travel
Despite the opening of the borders, most decide to stay there and organize trips within Poland,
which can be seen from the siege experienced by the most popular resorts in Poland in recent
years. However, there is a group that limits vacation travel plans. The available data show that
people aged 55 and over have a smaller share in the group of tourists looking for accommodation
on than a year ago
Many weeks of social isolation meant that Poles who had switched to work and distance learning
wanted a bit of freedom. As soon as most of the restrictions were removed, a great relaxation
could be noticed. When on May 4, 2020, the owners of accommodation facilities were given the
green light to accept accommodation reservations, tourists quickly took the opportunity to plan
a holiday trip.
More and more seniors and retirees are healthy, fit and still active people who want to get to
know new places and travel including other countries. Travel agencies dedicated to seniors are
established, and in hotels located in the Mediterranean basin, one can meet a Polish resident or
the possibility of renting a Polish guide. This is especially important for people who do not
communicate in English.
Proper preparation of a trip already in Poland, checking the area, or booking an airport transfer
are issues in which it is worth supporting departing seniors. One should also remember to
additionally take care of safety, e.g. by checking where there are medical points that can provide
quick help and equip the first aid kit well. It is also worth remembering to ensure communication
with the elderly. Especially when traveling abroad, one should check the travel rules.
The end of June and the first days of July 2020 and the continuing trend in 2021 clearly show
that Poles no longer want to stay at home. If, for various reasons, they cannot go on vacation,
they often decide to go on a weekend trip to, for example, the nearest lake district. The holiday
weather contributes to this - there are crowds on the beach, in the mountains and by the lakes.
Rarely does anyone keep the required distance, which should not be the case. The analyses
show that in the summer of 2022-2021, people aged 55 and over continued to be interested in
these directions. However, drops are noticeable everywhere - the share of seniors in the group
planning a trip to Ciechocin in 2020 is only 3.7%, while in 2019 it was 15.4%. Even fewer older
tourists want to go to Kołobrzeg - this percentage is 0.6 percent for San, while in 2020 it was 6.2
percent. Due to the uncertain situation in the world, Poles opted for safe accommodation in the
country - primarily those that inform about the safety rules implemented at home.
The holiday preferences of Polish seniors do not differ significantly from the choices made by
other age groups. However, there are also differences - it turns out, for example, that Poles over
60 pay less for holidays abroad, because they often decide to go outside the peak season.
People over 60 are becoming more and more interested in organized holidays abroad. During
the first three quarters of this year, the popularity of foreign travels increased by 20% in this age
group. The statistics kept by also show that it is the older holidaymakers who can
discover real price deals. Destinations most often chosen by seniors are similar to the choices
of other age groups, they are: Greece, Egypt, Turkey, Spain and Bulgaria.
Data from indicate that Greece was slightly less popular among older people this
year - in the period from January to the end of September, slightly more than 1/4 of seniors went
there, while in this period Peloponnese and its surroundings were chosen by every third Polish
tourist. Unlike the general public, seniors left for Egypt more willingly (15% compared to 14%).
A clearly higher percentage of seniors also left for Tunisia this year (2.4% compared to 1.6% in
total). Turkey (13.7% as compared to 17% of all tourists) and Bulgaria (5.3% of seniors as
compared to 8.4%). was much less popular among seniors The standard of rest for seniors, as
well as the places where they want to spend their vacation, also do not differ significantly from
the average. Every fifth senior, as well as tourists in general, chose to stay in a 5 * hotel, which
does not differ from the average. On the other hand, slightly less often than all tourists stayed in
4 * hotels (40% compared to 45% in total), and more often than in general - in 3 * standard hotels
(33% seniors compared to 30% in total) in 2 * hotels and lower categories (6% of seniors
compared to 5% of the total)
One of the possibilities of active participation in social life for Seniors in Poland is learning
English. Knowledge of the English language makes it easier for seniors to find themselves in the
modern world. They can travel freely without fearing that they will not be understood at the
airport, hotel or restaurant. Language courses for seniors give retirees better access to
information and at the same time meet new people or spend time in a new company. Knowledge
of the English language is necessary in today’s world - it is the language of international
communication. English for seniors is a great idea for development in the autumn of one’s life.
With the elderly in mind, special courses, both stationary and online, are created. The English
language for seniors is often a big challenge, as most older people did not learn it compulsorily
at school. In the past, mostly Russian was taught in schools. Today, English is much more
important as it is used to communicate internationally. In addition, the vast majority of film
productions, as well as elements of pop culture, are addressed to English-speaking audiences.
Many seniors decide to start learning a foreign language (including English) after retirement,
when they have more time for themselves. Sometimes, in the case of still professionally active
seniors, starting education is a must.
Many language schools offer special groups for seniors. Classes are conducted at various levels
and adjusted to the pace and abilities of the students. Many schools focus on teaching practical
language skills, and not on rigid grammatical correctness and language rules on paper. In
addition, many companies that employ seniors subsidize learning English - they pay extra for
classes or organize special language courses within the company. This is to improve the
language competences of seniors and adapt them to the conditions of the modern labour
Older people are often abandoned and it is certainly worth encouraging them to develop despite
their age, because one can never know when learning English will be useful. Not only is it a mind
training, it also helps in simple communication in the hotel or on the street to help a lost foreigner.
Although anyone who starts learning a language would like to speak it immediately like a native
speaker, the reality is more complicated. Nevertheless, it is worth spending time learning
English, because knowing it brings great benefits, also for pensioners. Why learning English is
good for seniors?
Learning a language is a challenge. It can become a passion for a senior and a useful
activity that will fill the days off.
Learning new words is great training for one’s brain. By stimulating memory, it allows one
to maintain good condition.
The English language can be a pretext to make new friends, for example during courses
at language schools or during online lessons.
Knowledge of the English language makes it easier for seniors to find their place in the
modern world. They can travel freely without fearing that they will not be understood at
the airport, hotel or restaurant.
Language courses for seniors give retirees better access to information. Many interesting
sources on the Internet are available in English. Knowing English allows one to freely
navigate on the web and develop other interests. It also makes watching foreign movies
more enjoyable, and the lyrics of your favourite songs no longer hide secrets.
A foreign language can also be a connecting factor between generations. A senior who
knows English can understand their grandchildren and the slang they use more easily,
and will be able to be supportive, e.g. while doing homework.
15 z dnia 18.03.2022
Research has been carried out to find out the opinions of seniors about learning English in this
era. 25 seniors aged between 45 and 71 and over participated in the study. The dominant group
of respondents were people aged between 61 and 70 years of age.
A detailed summary is presented in the diagram below.
Source: own study based on the conducted research
All respondents were from Poland. When the gender division of respondents were analysed, it
was found that 72% of the participants were women, and 28% were men -. The results can be
seen in the diagram below.
Source: own study based on the conducted research
When the respondents’ source of income was analysed, it was found while 76% of the
respondents were retired, 16% of them were employed full-time. A small percentage was self-
employed, and 4% had other sources of income A detailed list can be seen in the diagram below.
Source: own study based on the conducted research
Most of the respondents ( 96%) lived in large cities with 100,000 to 500,000 inhabitants, and
the rest (4%) were rural residents -The summary is presented in the chart below.
Source: own study based on the conducted research
All the survey participants travelled outside Poland. Seniors responded unanimously that their
favourite destination is cultural tourism - on a par with nature tourism. Ecotourism came second,
followed by adventure tourism. Seniors unequivocally emphasized that they did not plan medical
tourism and did not prefer to relax on the beach. The percentage set of answers is presented in
the chart below.
Source: own study based on the conducted research
When they were asked about people who accompany them during travel, the respondents
indicated that they were most often friends, which was followed by family. Other responses
included partners, single trips, and people they met on the spot or via the Internet. The majority
of respondents indicated that they never (11 respondents) decided to choose people they met
on the spot or via the Internet as travel companions - it is 14 people (rarely, sometimes, often).
A detailed list of the answers is presented in the chart below.
Source: own study based on the conducted research
The questions aimed to analyse the barriers to which seniors are exposed when traveling. As
many as 15 respondents reported a problem with the lack of financial resources; in total 21
people expressed a positive opinion in this area. Only 4 people indicated that they had never
had problems with financial resources for the trip. When cultural barriers were analysed, 19
people claimed that they never or rarely encountered difficulties, or rarely; only 5 respondents
indicated that they often faced cultural barriers when traveling. Travel limitations may be health
problems - often or always for 5 people; others faced such difficulties rarely or not at all.
Since the participants are a group of seniors, health problems certainly limit the choice of holiday
destination; then the climate, the quality of the medical care offered, or the amount of the
additional policy covering any costs of treatment for the trip should be taken into account. The
barrier related to the lack of time was very evenly distributed, , most answers were divided
between rarely and often - it may result from professional activity or helping relatives - e.g. caring
for grandchildren. Difficulties related to not knowing a foreign language were defined as the last
barrier. Only 8 respondents indicated that they encountered this difficulty often or always during
trips abroad; the remaining 17 people either did not have this problem; or it was relatively rare.
Source: own study based on the conducted research
Looking at the previous statement, it is good to analyse the difficulties indicated by seniors
participating in the study while learning a foreign language in more detail.
The first fear is the fear of making a mistake - this is what 17 respondents declared - only 1
person does not agree with this statement. 20 respondents declared the fear of the inability to
remember words in a foreign language; also 20 respondents declared fear and fear of speaking
a foreign language. At the same time, it is comforting that also 20 people do not see any
problems or barriers or reluctance to learn a foreign language. A detailed list of the answers is
presented in the chart below.
Source: own study based on the conducted research
Another area of analysis was the choice of a tool for learning a foreign language by the
respondents. 20 respondents indicated using the laptop as a tool to support language learning;
4 people said that sometimes used the laptop and only 1 said that they rarely used the laptop.
15 respondents indicated that they would use a smartphone often and always; while 10
respondents indicated that they could use it sometimes or rarely. 3 respondents would not use
electronic books, 7 seniors would sometimes use them; while 15 respondents would use them
often and always. Traditional books, i.e. printed books, are close to 15 respondents, 7 seniors
would rarely read paper editions of books for learning a foreign language, while only one person
indicated that they would never use them. Board games are the least popular among our
respondents when choosing a tool for learning a foreign language; answer rarely and never
selected 12 respondents; 9 seniors assessed that sometimes they would play board games;
while 4 people indicated always and often.
Source: own study based on the conducted research
Another issue that the respondents asked about was the possibility of choosing a method of
learning a foreign language during the COVID-19 pandemic. Via the website, 11 respondents
indicated that they would certainly benefit from learning a foreign language, and 8 people
probably. It is possible that 4 seniors marked this, and probably not was marked by only 2
respondents. The e-learning platform was presented as the second option; where 15
respondents indicated that they would definitely use it; 6 people said it was probably a good
idea. Rather not and will not be used” were marked by 4 people from the e-learning platform.
The third way to learn a foreign language would be to use the application on the phone, here 17
seniors would definitely and probably choose this option; 5 respondents indicated that it was
possible; only 3 respondents said they would not and would probably not use it. 14 respondents
would choose watching movies in a foreign language as a language learning tool during the
COVID pandemic; this possibility does not exclude 9 seniors; only 2 people firmly stated that
they would not make such an attempt. Looking at the possibility of learning via DVDs or CDs - 6
respondents are rather not interested, and 19 people did not exclude such a possibility. Written
material was presented as the last tool; such as textbooks, here 23 respondents claimed that
such a possibility was acceptable, there were 2 seniors for such a solution. A detailed list can
be found on the list below.
Source: own study based on the conducted research
92% of the respondents participating in the survey declared their willingness to learn English,
only 2 respondents (8%) did not express such willingness.
Source: own study based on the conducted research
Then, the respondents were asked about their motivation to learn English. Interest in language
was most densely indicated; interest in culture and interest in contacts with people of the same
age (17 responses each) were marked respectively. The least popular option was the possibility
of going shopping. Details are shown in the chart below.
Source: own study based on the conducted research
According to the respondents, mobile travel applications are mainly used to discover new places
(always, often - 20 respondents); searching for reviews of places and getting details of the
destination (always, often - 17 respondents); location of local attractions (always, often - 14
respondents); hotel reservation (always, often - 13 answers); sharing photos from the trip
(always, often - 12 answers); as a medium for selling tickets online (always, often - 10 answers),
posting opinions about the destination (always, often - 8 respondents). A detailed list is
presented in the chart below.
Source: own study based on the conducted research
Senior respondents, when asked about what should be included in future learning materials to
improve their English, indicated respectively availability of video materials (20 respondents);
availability of modular sections in PDF format (17 respondents); tips for self-study and availability
of learning apps for tablet or phone (15 responses each); and links to social websites (11
respondents). A detailed list is presented in the diagram below.
Source: own study based on the conducted research
When asked what they thought was missing in electronic materials used to learn English, the
respondents most often indicated: appropriate content (16 votes); Internet connection to sources
and the ability to use mobile devices (15 respondents); the right amount of communication
exercises (14 seniors); and relevant illustrations (13 seniors). Detailed answers are presented
in the diagrams below.
Source: own study based on the conducted research
When asked about the desire to have their own application tailored to their individual needs,
which would help them in their travels - 75% agreed and 24% were undecided.
Source: own study based on the conducted research
Man learns throughout his life. For older people, retirement and the associated large amount of
free time is a perfect opportunity to acquire new information and skills. One of the most valuable
areas of knowledge that pensioners can explore are foreign languages, and in particular -
English. Goethe said that he who does not speak foreign languages knows
nothing about his own. These words are especially relevant today. The pace of globalization
means that in order to be up to date with the current international situation, technical innovations,
or even to be able to cope with completely normal life situations, knowledge of foreign languages
is simply necessary. Since older people want to understand and communicate in Shakespeare's
speech, it is no longer difficult to find a suitable offer. English for seniors is an increasingly
popular item in the offer of language schools and more. However, one should not think of such
a course as an ordinary product. The popularity of this service is also of great importance in the
social dimension
In summary, seniors do not have to lag behind when it comes to taking advantage of new
technological opportunities. Many of them keep up with the times and are as good at using the
computer or surfing the Internet as their younger colleagues or family. English lessons for seniors
are an option for those who cannot participate in classes for various reasons. In smaller towns
and villages, it is also more difficult to find English classes for seniors - then the Internet becomes
a solution.
Online courses are an interesting form of learning for older people. A lot of this type of material
is available for free, and the interactive form of the lesson is more engaging than the classic form
of a lesson / lecture. The involvement of multimedia allows one to experience a given issue more
fully and, for example, perfect one’s accent or become familiar with a living language.
Remote foreign language lessons have been known for a long time and are very popular.
Obviously it is a convenient form of learning, especially for people who do not want to spend
time traveling to a full-time school and traditional lessons. A survey conducted by IQS
commissioned by Tutlo shows that online language courses are gaining new followers, also
among the youngest and oldest age groups. Thanks to the Internet, children can learn English
with their grandparents and not only acquire new skills, but also strengthen intergenerational
ties. Without a doubt, remote English learning is becoming more and more popular. Research
conducted by IQS on behalf of the Tutlo language platform shows that half of the surveyed
parents believe that classes at school are not attractive to young people
As much as 63 percent of those interviewed say that the attractiveness of language learning is
increased by the use of new technologies such as e-learning. Among seniors who decided to
learn a foreign language, as many as 64 percent uses the Internet for this purpose. Holidays,
when many children are taken care of by their grandparents, are a good time to learn together
online. The benefits of such learning are confirmed by institutions specializing in organizing
activities that connect different generations
17 z dnia 18.03.2022
O badaniu: Badanie preferencji dotyczących nauki języka angielskiego zrealizowano we wrześniu 2019 r. wśród trzech grup: aktywnych
zawodowo mieszkańców miast powyżej 100 tys., rodziców posiadających dzieci w przedziale od 7 do 17 lat oraz osób powyżej 55 roku życia,
mieszkających w miastach powyżej 100 tys. mieszkańców. Badanie przeprowadzono na zlecenie firmy Tutlo przez instytut badawczy IQS.
Learning English for seniors online is also more freedom when the Senior decides to have the
course without a teacher; then has access to educational content at any time. Thanks to this,
they can learn at their own pace and when they have the time,. In addition, many on-line courses
offer access to training materials and dates are set for on-line meetings with students and the
teacher, where you can practice the acquired knowledge in practice.
Of course, English for seniors is also the basis of many residential courses. The offer is
extremely wide. More and more language schools are organizing a special course of education
for the elderly. At the same time, nothing prevents one from enrolling in a regular course -
however, one should take into account the fact that the pace of work and the subject of individual
lessons may be far from the possibilities or interests of the senior. Therefore, it is also worth
checking the possibilities that do not require large financial outlays or are even free.
Apart from language schools, interesting classes are organized by the Universities of the Third
Age. The development of linguistic skills takes place there through a series of meetings in small
groups, and the program can be varied and focused as much on education as socializing with
other students, meeting interesting people, etc. Without diminishing the educational role of these
classes, it is worth mentioning that their additional advantage is motivating the elderly to explore
the world, the proverbial leaving home and making contacts.
Courses are also organized by various public benefit organizations and local government units.
The duration, level of difficulty and conditions of participation in these courses can be absolutely
different from each other, as they usually have different ideas. For example, activities co-
financed by the European Union are usually part of larger programs that aim to activate older
people in employment, fight against exclusion, etc.
Apart from the courses themselves, in community centres or libraries, sometimes free classes
are organized, which also help to develop language competences. These can be, for example,
free conversations with a native speaker, discussion clubs where only English is spoken (under
the supervision of philologists) and any other type of activity that people who are fluent in this
language on a daily basis want to support.
The offer of language classes for older people is very wide, especially in larger cities. English
for seniors, whether in the form of courses, lessons or conversations, is no longer considered
an extravaganza, but rather a useful form of entertainment and leisure activities. It is worth
spending some time and helping your loved ones find a form of foreign language teaching that
will give them the most fun and bring the best educational results.
One of the reasons was shown by the high-profile advertising campaign of one of the auction
portals, where an elderly man, a pensioner, learned English to be able to communicate with his
grandson living in the UK. Other reasons are also related to the possibility of communication:
knowledge of a foreign language means the freedom to travel, work, interpret and obtain
English for seniors is also a fight against a kind of exclusion. Comparing our society with another,
where learning foreign languages begins at a very early stage and is carried out intensively
(Scandinavia, Benelux countries, Germany, etc.), it is clear that seniors in these countries can
take advantage of the opportunities that Polish retirees can benefit from rules unreachable.
Wallet aside, not knowing the language closes many doors. It is impossible to freely correspond
with people scattered all over the world, visit or acquire interesting things on the Internet. It is
impossible to live, even for a week, outside the country and get to know new cultures, places,
tastes, etc. English for seniors opens these doors.
Hence, it is certainly the most important advantage of learning English for seniors. Older people
are very often afraid to travel outside Poland for a simple reason - they do not know Polish and
do not always want to use the offer of a travel agency.
One has to remember that seniors grew up at a time when they learned Russian at school and
their knowledge of English manifests itself in knowing a few words, such as "ok", "good", "great",
etc. Knowledge of the English language allows you to freely communicate with people from all
over the world. If you are a senior who runs a company and would like to open up to cooperation
with foreign entities, it is definitely worth knowing English, and it is not a language that is difficult
to learn. Therefore, the ability to speak English can directly translate into an increase in earnings
and brand recognition.
Today's seniors want to stay active as long as possible and make the most of their retirement.
Free time, more freedom and fewer responsibilities make it the perfect time to devote yourself
to your passions, find new interests, and even take on completely new challenges, e.g. start
learning a foreign language. We prove that learning English for seniors is possible!.
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