Managing Change

A readiness to respond to change and manage change within your language school has never been more essential than in these challenging times. In this course you will learn about practical tools and theoretical frameworks that will help you lead change programmes in your school, as well as supporting you in responding to change initiatives effectively.  

This course will provide you as an academic manager with the opportunity and a safe space to reflect on the new and challenging changes you may be experiencing in your school. During the course you can learn from your tutor, share with peers, find solutions and be more effective in your job as a result - to the benefit of your team and school.

Choose your dates and apply for this Online course in Managing Change now! >>

Who is it for?

This course is for you if:

  • You are a new manager, or a manager with some experience, who wishes to develop their skills and knowledge to lead change and respond to change initiatives;
  • You want a course that gives you a range of practical ideas as well as a theoretical grounding in the topic;
  • You want to discuss issues and solutions with other managers and with a course tutor, networking within a global community.

The course requires a minimum English language level of C1. The course can be taken by managers working in a language school context in any department e.g. DOS, Marketing Manager, Head of Reception or School Director. 

In a managerial role, you will be dealing with change all the time. This includes changing client expectations, parental expectations, a changing market, a changing staff body and changing demands. This course will look at the factors that impact preparing for change, how to manage change effectively, and coping with the aftermath of a change process.

As an academic manager or director of studies, you might not have enough time to thoroughly reflect on how you do things. Your time is spent actively on getting things done, but not necessarily thinking about the processes that you go through.

In this course, participants find that having the time and opportunity to explore change theory and principles, and then to transliterate that into their day-to-day practice gives them the confidence to manage change better. 


This is a 6-module course, delivered asynchronously entirely online via our VLE (Virtual Learning Environment) site.

During the course you will explore:

  • Different Views of Structure. Look at different organisational structures and models of organisational culture.
  • Organizational Attitude to Change. Develop an understanding of the different factors that drive change. Consider how change is managed in your organisation
  • Theories of Change Management. Develop an awareness of different models of change management.
  • Responses to Change. Look at positive and negative responses and consider how individual perspectives can affect people's reactions. Explore how to incorporate awareness of these perspectives into the management of change process. Become aware of the different response cycles to change.
  • The Timing of Change. The change cycle and the Sigmoid Curve. Examine the relationship between leadership and change management.
  • Types of Change. Learn how to conduct a premortem. Explore the differences between strategic and operational change. Examine different scenarios and evaluate change type. Look into how to minimize change fatigue for staff.

One of the benefits of this course is that it is completely tailored for academic managers. The role of an academic manager can sometimes feel quite solitary. It isn’t always possible to talk to colleagues about challenges or problems you’re facing because it could be that colleague that you’re having an issue with. You can't always talk to your own director either.

So it is reassuring and valuable to be in a community of other academic managers – the people doing pretty much the same job as you. All of the IH Specialist Short Courses for Managers in an Academic Context create a safe space to share problems, solutions and ideas. There is lots of support from the course tutor as well. You will learn to reflect on your own experiences and learn from your peers too.


The course is an asynchronous online course. It is designed this way so that you can access the material whenever it suits you. You don't have to log on at a certain time which means that wherever you are in the world the time difference is never an issue.

A new module is covered each week and the material for that module is provided over the course of the week. You are given tasks to do both in groups and individually. For each unit, you will have online study, discussion forum tasks, and a weekly written portfolio task. There is also a 2,500-word assignment which you will submit at the end for assessment as well. It is important to log on frequently and keep up with the discussions so that you will stay on track.

The discussion forums are a great opportunity to share ideas and learn from your peers on the course. There is plenty of reading and references that you can refer to later, as well as links to relevant webinars. The tutors also log on frequently, monitor the discussions and give you guidance and support.

Read our IH OTTI FAQs >>


Your tutor marks your tasks as the course progresses and there is the opportunity to resubmit if necessary. Participants are expected to submit a minimum of 70% of the tasks. At the end of the course there is a final assignment which pushes you to reflect on what you have learnt during the course. The assignment along with your tasks makes up the portfolio that is submitted electronically to the IHWO Assessment Unit. Your tutor is on hand for support throughout. The final grade is a pass or fail. Portfolios are submitted two weeks after course completion.

You can find out about the certificate you will receive here.

Course tutors

The course is delivered by an expert tutor and the number of participants ranges from 8 to 12. Our tutors are all experienced managers with many years of experience working in language schools as well as online training experience.

Time commitment

It depends on the individual, but we recommend a minimum of 7 to 10 hours per week spent online and doing tasks. We recommend that you aim to log on for 45 minutes to an hour each day to stay on track.

Your study hours are flexible, but some tasks require group input and have set deadlines. The more time you can devote to the course, the more you will gain from it.

What is special about this course?

The role of academic managers can be a lonely one as new challenges or changes often have to be solved alone. This is because an academic manager sometimes cannot discuss issues with colleagues or the director as the situation may be related to them. What participants really value in this course is the online community, the opportunity to share best practices and discuss experiences they have had with peers from all over the world in a protected environment. Plus the expert input from their knowledgeable tutor.

Is there a reading list for the module?

The course reading is provided during the module, with additional resources provided by the tutor as required.

Course dates & fees

  • All 2024 courses have now taken place, please email to enquire about future course dates.

£385 (£327 IH staff)

*The course fees stated are exclusive of 20% VAT. VAT will be added to the fee if it is paid by a business or individual located in the UK.

Course fees must be paid in full prior to the start date.

How do you apply?

  1. Choose your dates and fill in the online application form, which is sent directly to us. You will have to answer some basic questions about your qualifications and experience, but there is no need to submit any documents or proof of language level.
  2. We will review your application and get in touch if we have any queries.
  3. Once your application is approved, we will send you a payment link to pay for the course via debit/credit card. 
  4. Once the payment fee is paid (by you or your employer) we will confirm your place on the course.
  5. A few weeks before the start date we will send your login details, and you can access the platform / VLE to familiarise yourself with how it works before the course starts. We will also send you any pre-module reading materials.

There is no deadline for applying, but once we have 12 people confirmed on a course, then it is full – so it is better to send your application form in as soon as you’re interested, to secure a place on the course!

We create each new course especially for the participants, and so we need to close applications on the Wednesday before the course begins to give us time for this.