Actually, very serious! Phone classes are an excellent way to improve listening and speaking skills and can be taken on a stand-alone basis or in conjunction with presential classes. They also have the advantage of not having to physically go to a place but can be taken anywhere there is a landline. At Emerson, the phone classes are very structured and follow guidelines so that the student doesn’t just “babble”. But the biggest asset that we have is the teachers themselves. It takes a very special type of person to be a phone-teacher: informed, organized, patient, internet savvy, good diction and enunciation, loves to talk on the phone as well as be a good listener, are just a few of the characteristics necessary and we have been fortunate to have found teachers who not only possess these characteristics but embody the essence of being true ESL teachers. While at first glance it may look like an easy job, it is not – it is a lot of hard work and can be more trying than face-to-face classes. Because the student cannot see who is on the other end of the phone, the teacher needs to work twice as hard at establishing a rapport with the student. This can be especially difficult when a student is shy or insecure, but once the teacher has managed to help the student overcome his/her fears the learning curve suddenly becomes a steep incline! So, “telephone classes, are you serious?” Yes, very!!!