Teacher Stories

Teacher Stories

Liam Mcloughlin, Teacher

Location:Sydney Hyde Park

There is much to love about teaching English to international students. Helping young people from around the world develop their language skills is certainly very satisfying.

Even more rewarding is watching students thrive when you give the encouragement, motivation, understanding and validation they are searching for.

I like to think that by offering my knowledge, enthusiasm and care I am in some small way contributing to both a meaningful life for our students and a welcoming, accepting and peaceful multicultural society.

Inayah Ariffin, Teacher


In General English, the communicative activities that students engage in to practice their new language and skills really bring out the best in them; I feel it is this approach that makes a successful class work together as a unit towards a common goal. 

There’s a good mix of students from all over the world, and from all walks of life, which makes it such a colourful and dynamic environment for English language learning.

I feel like I’ve learnt a lot about the world from the diverse student body here.

Carlie Judkins, Senior Teacher

Location:Sydney Hyde Park

I started working in Navitas in 2009 and over the years have taught various courses, but mostly Cambridge. I really believe in the value of these intensive courses – students can perceive a significant improvement in their grammatical accuracy by the end and are able to use a broader range of vocabulary.

Also, because they are closed courses, Cambridge students and their teacher can really get to know each other well and have a great time both in class and outside of class on occasional excursions. 

Karen Haire, Senior Teacher

Location:Sydney Hyde Park

Remember that everyone in your class is in the same situation, far from home and looking for friends. 

You'll make an 'English family' for yourself in Australia and we're here to help you do that!

Martyna Paprzycka, Teacher

Location:Sydney Hyde Park

The most rewarding aspect of teaching English to overseas students is being part of their adventure in Australia and the learning process itself. Seeing them improve and have fun with English gives me a great satisfaction and motivates to work hard. The opportunity to meet students from different parts of the world and all walks of life is yet another thing.

General English classes are designed to practise all the language skills: reading and writing, speaking and listening, and to develop knowledge of grammar and vocabulary. Students joining these English lessons are assessed for level and allocated to an appropriate English class. Join our extra-curricular activities and practice speaking English in social settings. This way you will be fully immersed in the foreign language and develop your language skills effectively.

Keep working hard and never give up! Practice makes perfect. Attend all the classes and try to use what you learn in class outside the classroom environment.

Beth Derbyshire-Sloan, Teacher

Location:Sydney Hyde Park

The most satisfying aspect of teaching Academic English is the students themselves. There’s a huge array of different personalities that come together, all with different learning styles and who all respond to me in very different ways. While the course is rigorous it is scaffolded so that students learn in stages, building each day on previous knowledge. There is lots of one-to-one time with the teachers to help students work through presentations, research, report writing and essays.

The learning is student-centred – which means that the teachers coach but not lecture – we try to ensure that students do most of the talking. There is loads of time for students to practice speaking with their classmates in breakout rooms to improve conversation and presentation skills.

Gavin Brown, Senior Teacher

Location:Sydney Hyde Park

For English teachers there is no greater satisfaction than seeing a student’s improvement throughout the course and sharing in their joy at achieving the scores they require for further study at the tertiary level in postgraduate, undergraduate and diploma courses. On a personal level it is also a wonderful experience developing a relationship with students from a wide variety of different cultures and language backgrounds.

Academic English teaches students the formal writing skills essential for success at university level. The programs provides students with strong critical thinking and research skills. Through the speaking units and assessments students learn formal presentation and debating skills that are required at university and in the workplace. Students learn about appropriate grammar with a focus on realistic academic writing genres. The academic English course utilises an online learning platform (Moodle) that integrates face to face and online learning while also providing plenty of materials for independent learning. 

Never be afraid to use the English you have. Mistakes are expected and it is how we all learn new languages. Participate in class and never be afraid to ask questions. Read and listen to English at every opportunity even outside of what is required for your course.

Hayley Crawford, Senior Teacher

Location:Sydney Hyde Park

One of the best things about teaching international students is the chance to meet people from all over the globe. I love working with a group of people who are diverse yet heading towards the same goal of learning a language and advancing academically. 

Academic English really teaches you how to be a student in a Western context. In an AE class, you’re not only learning English to improve your communication skills, you’re also learning about the academic culture – the attitudes, values and ways of doing things that are common at Australian universities. Learning academic culture and language together will really improve your chances of being successful in your tertiary studies, whether in formal presentations, group work and discussions or better academic writing.

Our courses are really interactive. We also have group work and group assignments as part of the curriculum, which helps you learn even more and also truly prepares you for realistic tertiary study. At college and university, you’ll be expected to interact with your classmates and work together, so studying AE is good practice for that.

Suleeka Goomane, Teacher


One of the most rewarding aspects of teaching academic English is seeing how far students have progressed from their initial writing task to the final exam and assessment results at the end of the term. Although an intensive course, I believe the program is well balanced and showcases the study expectations required at higher education. I also enjoy the glorious ‘Aha’ moments where a student will finally grasp a difficult concept or grammar point.

The academic English program is designed to teach students to speak, read, listen, and write efficiently for academic achievement. For many teachers, myself included, it becomes alarmingly clear from the onset that many students have very little research, note taking, and critical thinking skills. The program allows for various opportunities where interactive speaking and debating skills are explored as well as how to research effectively and use referencing guides. As we progress rapidly into the blended delivery of teaching, students will also make use of online learning platforms which encourages more autonomous and accountable learning.

The first piece of advice I always give students is to get reading or watching the news as regularly as possible if they do not already do so. Being familiar with current affairs and staying updated on hot topic issues is crucial for academic success. There are many opportunities for in-class debates or discussion on various topics, thus having an opinion on important issues is imperative for academic success. Besides this, Navitas encourages the principle of “Safe Space”, as I do so in my lessons, fostering an inclusive and comfortable environment in which curiosities can be explored respectfully is something I hold firm; there are never any stupid questions and being confident to express or speak up is always encouraged!