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University of Bath

Peer Assisted Learning (PAL) for languages

Find out about our programme, and how it can help you to develop your language and intercultural skills, either as a participant or as a session leader.

Students having fun and practising Italian during a PAL session.
Develop your language and intercultural skills

What does a PAL for languages session look like?

The PAL sessions are facilitated by PAL leaders, who are native or near native speakers of the language you are interested in. During the PAL sessions you will be able to use the language outside a classroom context, meet with students from all disciplines and levels of study, and have the opportunity to improve your language skills under the guidance of fellow students. Attending PAL sessions could be a useful way for you to consolidate the topics you are learning in classroom or in your independent language learning. It is also an effective tool to increase your intercultural knowledge as, through the facilitation of a peer, you will be able to explore the culture of the country (or the countries) where the language you study is spoken.


Sessions are available in:

  • Arabic

  • Brazilian Portuguese

  • Mandarin Chinese

  • English

  • French

  • German

  • Italian

  • Japanese

  • Spanish


To participate in a session please register your interest.

Find out about the benefits of attending and leading sessions

Language learners often claim their biggest challenge is the lack of opportunity to practise the language they want to learn outside the classroom, in a 'normal' context. The PAL sessions offer an excellent opportunity for students to do so. If you decide to lead the sessions, you will also benefit by gaining new skills and experience, by increasing your confidence and communication skills and by meeting new people.

Find out how being a PAL leader has helped Jiani and being a PAL attendee has helped David.

Becoming a leader

Being a PAL Leader can enhance your academic performance and develop strong transferable attributes to equip you for life beyond university. You can become a PAL leader if you are a native speaker or a high level learner of Arabic, Portuguese, Mandarin Chinese, English, French, German, Japanese or Spanish.


You will then be invited to complete an online training before your face-to-face training. The face-to-face training will provide you with more detailed knowledge of PAL and how PAL operates. All training sessions are on Campus. You will be told where to go when you have registered your interest in coming along.

This is a volunteering role and you need to devote one hour per week, plus preparation time, during term time.


To become a PAL leader please register your interest

PAL sessions timetable

All sessions take place in the Language Learning Zone at term time only.

The timetable for Semester 1 2019 20 is:

Day Language Time
Monday German 1pm - 2pm
Tuesday Italian 3pm - 4pm
Wednesday Chinese 10am - 11am
Wednesday English 11am - 12pm
Wednesday Arabic 1pm - 2pm
Wednesday Portuguese 3pm - 4pm
Thursday Russian 10am - 11am
Thursday German 12pm - 1pm
Thursday Spanish 1pm - 2pm
Friday French 1pm - 2pm
Friday Japanese 5pm - 6pm

Please note: Arabic sessions start on 6 November.

How PAL for languages can help you