English Course Introduction

Watford Women's Centre, responding to the needs of women in Watford, started delivering English classes in 2005. The English Spoken as an Other Language (ESOL) programme has developed from one multi-level class to our present offering of 10 classes serving over 150 women each year. All classes are taught by qualified ESOL practitioners, registered with the Institute for Learning.

Students are given an initial ESOL assessment as well as an information and guidance session to determine any further needs or information they need. Classes are for two hours per week and are free. Some of the classes delivered away from Women's Centre are available to both men and women, if you have any concerns please check for details prior to registering your course place.

The ESOL programme also benefits from a team of volunteer classroom assistants who help the tutors devise personal learning plans for students who need extra support in the classroom. Most of these volunteers have received training in being classroom assistants from West Herts College.

Classes are delivered at Market Street as well as in the community (Centre Point Community Centre and Watford Community Church - The Wellspring Centre) at three levels:

  • Pre-Entry/Literacy – a class especially designed for Women who cannot read or write English, and who have particular difficulty with literacy in their own language.
  • Pre-Entry – a class for women who are real beginners in English.
  • Entry level 1, 2 and 3 – classes for beginners to intermediate levels of English, following the national curriculum for ESOL.

To discover more about ESOL course dates and times please either see our Facebook Page (Watford Womens Centre) or our Google + page (Watford Womens Centre) for more details. Before the start of each term we announce course enrolment dates on our social media pages. You can also This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. for more information.

Students are also encouraged to attend weekly book clubs to help improve their reading skills as well as a conversation club. These extra-curricular classes are run by experienced volunteers.

All ESOL students are given the opportunity to attend IT courses which are especially designed for ESOL learners at the Women's Centre.

Advanced English Courses – open to both men and women

We also run more advanced English courses at the Wellspring Centre, these include the First Certificate in English course. Please telephone us (01923 816229) or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. for further information.

To register for  any Englsh courses students can call into the Women's Centre or telephone the reception to be put on a waiting list for assessment. After students have been assessed, they are offered a place when one becomes available at the beginning of each new term in September, January and April.

To make an assessment and then reserve a place on a course please call in and chat to us or telephone 01923 816229.

Other ways to learn English

In addition to the ESOL classes above, we also offer:

  • A Citizenship course which prepares students to take the 'Life in the UK' test, required by the home office for British Citizenship or permanent leave to remain in the UK.
  • A 10-week Women into Work course for those ESOL students who would like to get into work.

Progression Routes

Students who are particularly interested in further education are encouraged to enrol at the local college (West Herts College) for further ESOL classes and support in their chosen career path.

Women's Centre Home Tuition Scheme

For students who are not able to attend classes within the community, we offer a home tuition scheme. Reasons for using the scheme are usually due to a new baby or caring responsibilities for a member of the family. Students have a volunteer tutor who visits for an hour once a week. Tutors are trained to help students define what they need to learn, and the lessons each week are centered around the student's needs. Students are encouraged to join the community classes or to move on to college when they are able. Further details can obtained by contacting us via the Contact Us page or telephone 01923 816229.