EFL class

In 2023, a total of 78,567 foreign students came to the Maltese Islands to attend English language courses at local licensed English Language Teaching (ELT) schools.

Figures released by the National Statistics Office (NSO) indicate an increase of 21,892 students when compared to the previous year. Such a drastic increase can be noted in light of decreased COVID-19 risks and regulations.

The largest share of students came from Italy (27.8 per cent), followed by Germany (10.4 per cent) and France (nine per cent). Overall, 73.9 per cent of total students came from an EU country.

The majority were aged 15 and under, while the smallest age bracket was that representing students over the age of 50 (6,080).

Generally, female students outnumbered males accounting for 61.9 per cent of all ELT students.

The NSO noted that July was the busiest month for local ELT schools in terms of course attendance, accounting for 17.1 per cent of the annual total. This was followed by August and March with 13.4 and 10.5 per cent, respectively.

73.1 percent of the total students chose ‘General English: Standard’ as a course followed by 16.5 per cent who chose ‘Intensive English’ courses.

Foreign students enrolled in local licensed ELT schools accounted for 273,131 student weeks. Out of all courses only one per cent was held online.

The average number of student weeks during the year under review stood at 3.5, a decrease of 0.9 weeks when compared to the previous year.

Meanwhile, with an average of 14.7 weeks, students from Colombia recorded the highest number of student weeks, followed by Chilean and South Korean students, who had an average of 13.3 and 10.7 student weeks, respectively.

During the year under review, 620 teachers and academic staff worked at local licensed ELT schools. 25 per cent of which were aged 55 and over. Overall, the majority (70.3 per cent) were female teachers.

On the other hand, non-teaching staff amounted to 603, of whom 69.2 per cent were employed on a full-time basis.

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