Frequently Asked Questions


What is included in a Horizon English Language Programme?

Our standard programmes include:

  • Full board Residential accommodation
  • Home Stay options available in some centres
  • 15 Hours of English per week
  • 2 Excursions per week: 1 half-day & 1 full-day
  • Multi-activity programmes & Specialist Activity programmes
  • Exciting Evening entertainment programme
  • Placement and End of Course test, full class materials provided plus an end of course certificate
  • Qualified TEFL Teachers and on-site Director of Studies

Where are Horizon English Language Programmes?

Horizon uses excellent venues which include some of Ireland’s premier boarding schools, a residential 3rd level college and Horizon’s own dedicated centre

What facilities are in Horizon venues?

All venues have excellent amenities including sports fields, swimming pools, indoor sports halls, concert halls, TV rooms and computer rooms.

Are all meals provided?

Yes, all meals are provided in venues and packed lunches are provided for excursions. Menus are devised to be varied and nutritious. All dietary requirements such as vegetarian, celiac and allergies can be catered for. It is advised to forward all specialist dietary requirements at the time of booking.

Where do students sleep?

Bedrooms are individual and in dormitories divided into male and female zones. Bathroom and shower facilities are also divided into male and female zones with a ratio of 1:7
Bed linen is provided in all centres and is changed at least once each week. Students are required to bring their own towels and need 3 towels: a hand towel, bath towel and a towel for swimming.

What time do students go to bed?

Students have supper at 10.15pm; go to bed at 10.30 and lights out is at 11pm.

Is there laundry facilities?

Yes, Horizon provides a weekly laundry service at a nominal cost.

How long is a Horizon English Language Programme?

Students are welcome to participate in 2, 3 or 4 week programmes

Will there be mixed nationalities?

Horizon English Programmes have welcomed students from many countries including Spain, France, Italy, Germany and Russia. Students are allocated to English classes after the Placement Test according to their ability in English as opposed to their age or nationality. This creates the necessity to communicate in English as a common language which enables students to establish new friendships with international classmates. Irish students are also present in venues completing activity programmes. They are residential and enjoy meals, activities and excursions with international students.

When do English classes take place?

All students have 15 hours English tuition per week over 5 mornings or afternoons. Additional classes can be arranged by request.

What are the English classes like?

Horizon English language classes are focused on delivering student-centred classes which assist, motivate and facilitate students to use and improve their English skills. These Horizon has a comprehensive syllabus and Learning Programme which are focused on Learner Outcomes and the principles of the CEFR [Council of Europe: Common European Framework of Reference for Languages] The Horizon levels are based on the CEFR levels A1-C2
Students are prepared for the Trinity GESE [Graded Examinations in Spoken English] and have the opportunity to complete their exam during their stay. Class activities include group work, role play, questionnaires, projects and games. Students also learn about Ireland’s rich culture and exciting history in advance of excursions to some of Ireland’s top attractions.

How is my level of English determined?

Upon arrival each student takes a placement test to determine their level of English. Students are then allocated in the class most suited to their ability

How many students are in each class?

Each class has a maximum of 15 students.

Are Horizon English Language classes suitable for students with limited or beginner English?

Yes, students with all levels of English can be facilitated in classes most appropriate to their ability.

What are the teachers like?

All teachers are qualified teachers who teach in Irish primary and second level schools. All teachers have completed specialised ELT courses and hold ACELS approved ELT certificates. Teachers are dedicated to assisting and supporting students to increase their confidence in English through stimulating, fun and language rich activities and lessons.

Do students need to bring their own books?

No, all class materials and resources are supplied in class. Students are advised to bring their own stationary such as pens, pencils, notebooks and English dictionary.

Do students practice their English throughout the course?

Yes, students are encouraged and facilitated to speak English at all times during the course in class, during free time, at meals, in activities and on excursions. Staff members are always on hand to assist encourage and motivate students to increase their confidence in spoken English.

What kind of activities so do students do?

Students participate in a wide range of morning and afternoon activities including sports like tennis, basketball, rugby, swimming, archery, climbing wall, dance, arts & crafts, rounders and orienteering.

What activities happen in the evening?

The Horizon entertainment programme is exciting and includes discos, talent shows, casinos, tournaments, movie nights and culture nights.

Who is the staff in Horizon Centres?

All staff in Horizon centres are carefully chosen, have experience and have appropriate qualifications. Horizon completes Garda vetting for every member of staff. Horizon has a staff student ratio of 1:15 which ensures effective support and supervision for students. Each centre has:

  • Camp Director who has overall responsibility for the management of the summer camp
  • Director of Studies who has responsibility for the implementation and management of the TEFL programme
  • Administrator who has responsibility for the organisation of the Administration Office
  • Activity Manager who has responsibility for the organisation of the activity programme
  • TEFL teachers who teach English classes
  • Activity Instructors who lead activity sessions
  • Group Leaders who support and supervise the students

What do students need to bring with them?

  • Suitable clothing for the duration of their stay
  • Towels & swimsuit
  • Rain jacket and trainers
  • Toiletries
  • Pens, pencils, notebook and dictionary for English class
  • 2 pin to 3 pin adapter plug to use in Ireland
  • Sports clothing, trainers and rain jacket
  • Medication if necessary

Do students need to bring pocket money with them?

Course prices already include accommodation, meals, workbooks and excursion entrances; therefore we do not recommend that students bring too much pocket money. Parents may like to provide them with enough for souvenirs and snacks.

What should students not bring with them?

It is strong advised that students do not bring the following items:

  • Expensive laptops, games consoles and ipads
  • Valuable jewellery
  • Large amount of cash

If a student brings expensive belongings such as laptop it is advisable that they have adequate private insurance as Horizon cannot accept responsibility for the loss or damage to such items.
Each venue has a bank. Students are welcome to lodge their pocket money for safe keeping and can withdraw some of their money each day when the bank opens.

Can Horizon cater for students with specific medical conditions?

Yes, Horizon has hosted students with many medical conditions. Parents should supply all details of all and any medical conditions at the time of booking to ensure that the appropriate supports are in place prior to students arriving. Medicines can be stored at the centre and refrigerated if necessary. Please inform us before travel and the student with details of the dosage and administration requirements. Please note students are responsible for their own medication.

Do students need to have medical insurance?

Yes, students need to bring details of their medical insurance. Students from the EU need to bring their EMIC [European Medical Insurance Card] with them as it will cover medical fees such as doctor and prescription fees in Ireland. Additional medical fees are the responsibility of the parents.

What happens if a student gets sick?

Horizon staff will deal with any minor illnesses/incidents on site – however if a student requires medical attention staff will accompany them to a doctor/hospital for consultation. Parents will of course be informed if we have to take this course of action.

Is Wi-Fi available?

Yes, Wi-Fi is available in all Horizon centres. It is advised not to bring expensive laptops.

How do students get to Horizon venues?

Horizon organises airport transfers from the airport to each centre. Horizon has a dedicated Transport Manager who is based in the airport on arrival and departure days to organise arrivals and check-in. Students are transferred to the venues by buses which all have seat belts and meet all safety standards, Students are greeted in the airport when they arrived and accompanied to departures when they are leaving. Students can also travel to venues with their parents.

Can parents call their son/daughter during their course?

Yes, prior to arrival all contact details for all venues is forwarded to parents. Each centre has a dedicated telephone number and parents can phone and arrange a call with their son/daughter.

How do you book a course?

Click here to read more about how to book >>

What happens after a booking is made?

Horizon will confirm that we have received and processed your booking and will give you a unique reference number which we ask that you quote in all correspondence. The booking will remain provisional until the full balance is received. We will send you further information relating to your course when available.

Who do I contact if I have additional questions?

Email us: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
Phone: 098 35844 (from overseas: +353 98 35844).
Fax: 098 35845 (from overseas: +353 98 35845).
Post: Horizon Ireland, 83 Westpoint, Westport, Co Mayo, Ireland.

How do I pay?

Please make payment to Horizon via bank transfer or credit card, quoting your booking reference at time of payment. Please see payment instructions on How to Book section of this website or on your invoice or booking forms’ terms and conditions.