Studying English can open all sorts of doors – it’s no wonder that there are an estimated one billion people currently learning the language! Fortunately, the English language resources you’re in search of are right at your fingertips. Explore the following 10 free online resources for English language learners:
ESL Instructors and Students The OWL at Purdue The Purdue University Online Writing Lab (OWL) delves into English grammar and mechanics and provides practice exercises and business writing tips. The OWL’s writing tutors even serve up individualized help online.
ToLearnEnglish This site features a placement/leveling test, reading and listening exercises on a range of topics, over 7,000 lessons for beginner, intermediate and advanced learners, and free, printable grammar and vocabulary worksheets. ToLearnEnglish also features chat rooms and forums that add to a sense of community.
BBC Learning English For those keen on British English, the BBC’s Learning English site offers up interesting features such as “Words in the News” and “Keep Your English Up to Date,” plus 200+ episodes of an award-winning English language teaching soap opera called “The Flatmates.”
SharedTalk Owned by the well-known language-learning software company Rosetta Stone, SharedTalk offers you the opportunity to chat live (either text or voice) with native English speakers from around the world.
WordReference This site offers an extensive set of bilingual dictionaries for translating terms to and from English and valuable user forums where you can pose questions to native English speakers regarding grammar and vocabulary usage.
About.com: English as 2nd Language About.com’s ESL pages provide comprehensive grammar lessons, vocabulary lists, idioms and expressions, and strategies to improve your English communication skills.
Randall’s ESL Cyber Listening Lab Randall’s listening activities for English language learners at all levels focus on improving comprehension of the spoken word.
Merriam Webster’s Learner’s Dictionary Merriam Webster’s Learner’s Dictionary, geared specifically toward those studying English as a second language, is an excellent resource for intermediate to advanced students. The site offers up 3,000 must-know words with the ability to create personalized, virtual flash cards, as well as quizzes and pronunciation exercises.
Antimoon The site aims to “provide advice and inspiration to learners of English as a foreign language.” Rather than vocabulary drills and grammar exercises, what you’ll find here is an overall approach to studying English that differs in some ways from conventional methods. Antimoon’s lively discussion forum focused on language learning is the site’s most compelling feature.
International Dialects of English Archive (IDEA) IDEA is a site for those English language learners interested in listening to and comparing the recordings of English accents and dialects from around the world. This site is a great tool for training your ear to hear the differences among accents.