This paper explores the efficacy of applying active learning methods in tutorials for international students. First it looks at the way that tutorials were being conducted and discusses their inadequacies and the need for change. The paper then describes some of the different activities that were used to involve the students in a more active form of learning. The positive feeling of the tutor regarding the change was confirmed by the feedback from the students to a questionnaire. The paper argues that despite the language difficulties and a tradition of rote learning, international students respond more readily to a variety of more interactive practices, but this cannot happen unless the tutor is prepared to make greater efforts to plan more innovative activities.