Richard Brown

About the Author

The English language has always got me places.

After an illustrious 4 year career crafting articles as a news and sports journalist, I came to the conclusion that a world must exist beyond the chip pan fires of Eastbourne and the goalless draws played out by my beloved Portsmouth Football Club.

My instincts were proved right, my wonderlust taking me to New York where, apparently, my English accent added charm in my role as a personal assistant then later helped to entice State Treasurers and other financial heavy-weights to jet in for conferences in Manhattan.

Feeling slightly lost in 2005 I headed to Bogota, Colombia, to visit a friend who had been making a living there as an EFL teacher and suggested that I also give it a go.  Clutching a copy of Murphy, I posed as an English teacher delivering classes in the Mexican Embassy among other places. While at times I felt like a bit of a fraud, I realised that unlike my previous jobs, EFL teaching was a world in which I could genuinely help people and make meaningful connections with them. It was at that point that I decided to do a CELTA course. Ten years after graduating from the University of Surrey with a degree in English Language and Linguistics, I slowly began to realise that I had (re-)discovered my calling.

I had also come home, finding my first serious teaching job at Language Specialists International, an excellent independent school in my hometown, Portsmouth. It was there that I sat opposite and learned from a fantastic teacher who encouraged me to complete the DELTA at International House, London, in 2008. That teacher was Lewis Richards, the co-author of our first publication, IELTS Advantage: Writing Skills.

English teaching has now taken me to the Costa Azahar, Spain, where I live with my wife, Raquel, dabbling with flamenco guitar and grappling with the subjunctive in equal measure (me not her!). I continue to enjoy teaching and training teachers, placing emphasis on creating lessons which give learners the space to complete engaging tasks while responding to lexical gaps in their emerging language. As my inspirational DELTA course tutor from IH, Nick Hamilton, put it, ‘Don’t MIND the gap, GET IN IT!’ It is largely this shared principal of teaching which helped Lewis and I to create IELTS Advantage: Writing Skills.

Richard's Recent Blog Posts

  • Pain relief for IELTS writing

     Hi I’m Richard Brown, co-author with Lewis Richards of IELTS Advantage: Writing Skills, which is a new book by Delta aimed at guiding students step by step through the writing module to a score of 6.5 or higher. In this blog I’m going to talk about the thinking behind the organisation of the book, [...]