CENTRE FOR FOREIGN LANGUAGES

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Uvodna stranaTHE FOUNDATION OF ILIJA M. KOLARAC was established in 1878. The building where the Foundation is located today was built in 1932. Immediately afterwards, in 1933, the Centre for Foreign Languages started to work. In the beginning, it was only the English language that was taught at the Kolarac Foundation.

Interestingly enough, English had been taught at Kolarac before the Department of English Language and Literature at the University of Belgrade was founded. One of the founders of the Department of English Language and Literature was Mrs. Mary Stansfield Popović, who first taught English at the Kolarac Foundation and was in charge of elementary, intermediate and upper-intermediate levels. Mrs. Mary Stansfield Popović was also the author of the first textbook for learning English in this country, which included phonetic transcription, and was published by the Kolarac Foundation between the two world wars.

The Centre for Foreign Languages takes pride in its famous teachers, the great names in the field of foreign language teaching, who taught English at Kolarac. Among them are, first of all, Mrs Ljiljana Mihajlović, PhD, and Mrs Slavna Babić, authors of the first series of textbooks for English language learning written to suit the requirements of the Kolarac Foundation. Mrs Danka Djokić, PhD, another famous author of English textbooks for Kolarac, surpassed the previous two authors by the number of editions of her textbooks. Mrs Danka Djokić improved English language learning in this country by being the first author who introduced communicative approach and applied it in her textbooks published by the Kolarac Foundation.

More than three decades ago, the Centre for Foreign Languages started to offer the first specialised English courses for economists and businessmen, as the forerunner of currently very popular business courses. Since 1977, responding to the needs of its students, the Centre developed specialised language courses such as: English for medical professionals, English for bankers, jurists, civil engineers and urban planners, managers and marketing specialists, as well as other business people.

As time passed, learning and teaching of the English language gradually led to the awakening of the interest for learning other foreign languages. Nowadays, the Foreign Language Centre offers courses in: English, French, German, Italian, Russian, Spanish, Chinese, Korean, Japanese, Greek, Slovenian, Turkish, Arabic, Norwegian, Swedish, Portuguese, Indonesian and Serbian for Foreigners. Classes for adults, young people, and children take place from morning to evening on our premises.

Over the past decades, the Centre for Foreign Languages cultivated and developed cooperation with all the language departments of the Faculty of Philology in Belgrade, as well as with various workers' and peoples' universities in Belgrade and in other parts of Serbia. Language courses were provided in accordance with the Kolarac Foundation methodology and its own textbooks. The Foreign Language Centre organised exams for students at the end of the courses.

The Foreign Language Centre has constantly been working on strengthening its cooperation with the British Council, the Goethe Institute, the Cervantes Institute, the French Institute, the Italian Cultural Centre, etc.

The Centre for Foreign Languages is the only authorized Examination Centre of the Goethe Institute in Serbia for the exams: Start Deutsch 1/2, Zertifikat Deutsch für jugendliche, Zertifikat Deutsch, Zertifikat Deutsch für den Beruf, Goethe-Zertifikat B2, Goethe - Zertifikat C1 and Zentrale Oberstufenprüfung.

The Kolarac Foundation has been an institution with the longest tradition of preparing students for the DELE exam by the Cervantes Institute. Until the opening of the Cervantes Institute in Belgrade in 2004, our teachers were the only authorized examiners for delivering the DELE diploma.

The Foreign Language Centre has been authorized since 1995 for DELF and DALF exams by the French Ministry of Education.

Since 1992, there have been a large number of students who acquired the necessary level of English language at the Foreign Language Centre in order to obtain certificates from the University of Cambridge - FCE, CAE or CPE. Since 2001, we have prepared students for the exams of all three levels of BEC (Business English Certificate). Some years later, the offer included ILEC (International Legal English Certificate), ICFE (International Certificate in Financial English), IELTS (International English Language Testing System) and TKT (Teaching Knowledge Test).

Our tradition and the quality of our teaching staff were a sufficient reference for the Foreign Language Centre to work with many ministries, banks and large firms both in former Yugoslavia and in the Republic of Serbia. We will mention only some of these institutions here:
The National Bank of Serbia, The Association of Serbian Banks, Société Générale Yugoslav Bank, Beobanka, Jubanka, Piraeus Bank, Serbian Bank, The Embassy of Spain, the UNHCR, the Council of Europe, the Belgrade Chamber of Commerce, the European Integration Office of the Federal Government of Serbia and Montenegro, the European Agency for Reconstruction, the Federal Customs Administration, the Public Procurement Office, the Ministry of Finance - Treasury, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the Ministry for Human and Minority Rights, Commodity Reserves, the Employment Service, the Institute of Transportation CIP, RATEL, JP PTT Serbia, the Electric Power Industry of Serbia, Sava Insurance, IDEA, RAPUS, Tehnobeton, the Crnjanski High School.