Maude Julien is a psychotherapist from Paris who has studied with English UK member centre Living Learning English several times in the last year, and has more study planned. Living Learning English places students in the homes of tutors, where they enjoy both formal lessons and UK culture.
What made you want to learn English, Maude?
To speak English has been my dream for a long time but I have a lot of work you know you never take the time. Three years ago I wrote a book about people taking control of other people - like in sects.
This book has been very successful and it will be published in the USA, Australia and the UK so I said yes - now you have to do it! So I decided to try to find a way to go to England.
What made you choose Living Learning English, where you have lessons and live in the home of the tutor?
I think the best is to go and live with people in England and study. I was very lucky - I went to Oxford and stayed with fantastic people. She is a teacher, they are retired people and they are fantastic people. I made a lot of progress.
How much has your English improved?
I progressed a lot when I was with them - I went one week in March last year, two weeks in May, one week in September and another week in March. Before I was unable to read a book, though I could read articles in psychology where I knew a lot of the words.
Now I read a lot of crime stories because I still make mistakes in word order so reading is helpful. I read all my books now in English, not only for my work.
Do you like studying in the UK?
I love England. I think it's my favourite place in the world. I've travelled a lot in Australia where I worked with the aboriginal community and it is very beautiful but I love England so much. I love Cardiff, I love London but I am completely in love with Oxford. It is incredible.
It sounds like you feel very welcome in the UK
People I meet are very nice. I meet a lot of people in Oxford because my teacher has friends there. My friends who live in London and Brighton say how much they like to live in England.
Last time I went to a book fair in London I decided to stay one week there to see how it was. I loved it completely. I am the Queen of the Tube in London now.
Before it was very difficult to speak but when you can speak better, you can speak with people in restaurants, lots of things. I felt very welcome and I found English people so polite so nice so helpful. Sometimes when I am lost, people help me it is easier to stay in London than Paris.
Have you got plans to come back to the UK?
I go back to Oxford in August for one week and I think I will go in London for one week perhaps in two months. I love Cardiff too because my husband and me are fans of Dr Who, complete fans. I love the show so much, and Matt Smith and David Tennant, who were past Doctors.
Would you recommend learning English in the UK to your friends?
I don't stop recommending English in the UK! Three of my friends did it - one went to Cardiff and another went to Oxford. Definitely I think this is the best way to learn.
You understand a lot of things and living with people is good. The people are incredible.
- If you have a student at your language centre that you would like to nominate to feature, please contact Susan Young, English UK's communications consultant.
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