What is TANDEM® ?

TANDEM is a bicycle designed for two riders both involved in getting forward. We have taken this word into our method of learning by exchanging languages with our motto: “In order to understand each other better I help you to learn and you help me to learn.” TANDEM is therefore the bicycle among various language learning approaches – it is cheap, individual and ecological. It is a communicative as well as an intercultural approach as it gives the opportunity to both learners to gain more insight into each other’s culture by direct communication.

TANDEM is the most active way of learning for everyone who wants to learn creatively, have fun and get new experience at the same time. There are both types of TANDEM: The one-to-one-TANDEM, a totally autonomous way, and the bi-national TANDEM class which supports an autonomous way of learning.

The TANDEM  schools´ teachers are native speakers and at the beginning of TANDEM they created their own working conditions within non-profit organizations, cultural cooperatives and self employment enterprises. By now, all kinds of enterprises are represented in TANDEM.

For many years there has been an academic advisory to TANDEM. The (International) TANDEM Conference celebrated regularly, provides the opportunity for an exchange of experiences between teachers and researchers. In this way, it is a professional alternative to those approaches incapable of combining language and culture, learning and reality.

Those schools or organizations using TANDEM form the TANDEM-Network. Each school is an entrance to others within the country and abroad. The function of the TANDEM Foundation was to be a signpost, giving direction. So, TANDEM is an approach not kept within narrow limits.

A TANDEM® for each opportunity?

TANDEM® is a method applicable to all ages, from children to seniors.

Tandem can be used in many ways: In nursery schools, primary and secondary schools, in vocational training institutions, in youth organizations, in universities and colleges, in teacher training colleges, in adult education, in Trade Union training within companies and immigrant centers.

Tandem works: In the country of  either of the groups taking part in a bi-national Tandem course,     or  together in a third country, in a cross-border way or on the Internet.

Tandem until now has been used in at least 23 languages: Albanian, Arabic, Basque, Bulgarian, Catalan, Czech, Chinese, Danish, English, French, Galician, German, New Greek, Hungarian, Italian, Japanese, Latvian, Polish, Portuguese, Serbo-Croatian, Slovenian, Spanish, Turk.

Tandem, many goals under one roof: The universal tandem of languages, the culture exchange oriented tandem, the professional tandem, the multilingual ‘Babylonia-Tandem’, the antiracist ‘Interkultur-Tandem’, cross-border ‘Mugaz Gain’, the ‘Dialog/Peace-Tandem’ for the reduction of political tensions,  and e-Tandem on the Internet.

Tandem, as one form of autonomous learning, offers flexibility of content: conversation, narration, reading, professional skills (phoning, translating, interpreting), leisure time activities, cross-culture differences . . . The material is to be found here.

TANDEM® – more than just language learning!