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Online Courses for Learning Spoken English: Course Summaries

Private language schools and English language university departments present options for students looking to study spoken English online. Courses are offered in varying formats at the beginning, intermediate, advanced and business-professional levels.

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Online English Language Courses

Below are some commonly offered online courses available for those wishing to learn or improve their English skills.

  • Beginning English Course: This course covers beginning language skills in reading, writing, grammar, vocabulary and pronunciation. Interactive online games and activities supplement audio, video or written lecture formats. Some courses also feature live conversation classes several times per day and offer students an opportunity to practice new language skills with teachers and other students. Assignments may include reading and writing exercises.
  • Intermediate English Course: This course is similarly designed to a beginner-level course, though it includes more complex grammar, vocabulary, reading, conversation and writing skills. An introduction to past and future verb tenses, correct usage of time expressions, phrasal verbs, reading newspapers, understanding uses for confusing verb pairs and conversation for daily matters may be included. Live conversation classes and at-home reading and writing assignments often function as critical aspects of such courses.
  • Advanced English Course: This course reviews language skills learned at the immediate level to aid students in comfortably using a variety of grammatical techniques in writing and conversation. Conversation-focused learning may include live online student debates, practice with idiomatic expressions or writing assignments that ask students to discuss worldly issues. This course level emphasizes helping students to control functional language and become confident communicators.
  • Beginning Academic English Composition Course: This type of university course doesn't lead to a degree; rather, it is designed to support undergraduate students, graduate students or business professionals who want to improve English skills for successful performance in academic and professional settings. Such courses emphasize recognition of correct grammatical structures, the ability to control structures in simple sentences, use of common academic terminology and development of a basic capacity to read academic texts. Courses may include e-mail or telephone conversations with an instructor, live online discussion with peers and essay assignments structured to help students express ideas in a concise manner.
  • Advanced Academic English Composition Course: This course is designed to develop students' capacities to write complex essays, including those that require academic research. Writing proficiency is refined to the point that a student can successfully function in university literature and composition courses. Students learn how to edit their academic work, successfully write essays under time constraints, strengthen paraphrasing capacity, use a variety of rhetorical styles and demonstrate a strong understanding of English grammar. Assignments include complex essay-writing exercises and may include conversations via phone or e-mail with teachers or fellow students.
  • Business Writing for Non-Native Speakers Course: In this course, students learn common missteps in business writing and communications and perfect their formal English language skills for business use. Students also learn different methods and styles of business communication, and they complete written assignments to practice new writing skills.
  • Adjectives and Adjective Clauses Course: This course will help upper level learners of English develop their skills for using adjective clauses. These topics will be explored with regard to speaking and writing.
  • Applying to U.S. Universities Course: In this course, students will examine the university admissions process. Topics include the creation of a school list, the importance of researching those schools and the plans necessary for applying to those desired academic institutions.

Program Information

Online English language courses designed to strengthen the spoken English, writing and grammar skills of nonnative English speakers occur in several formats. Universities don't offer such courses as part of degree programs; instead, online and on-campus university courses in English language prepare students to successfully complete academic coursework in English. Several of these courses feature open enrollment for business professionals looking to improve their English skills. Private language schools offer a variety of English language online courses; students may take fixed-date courses over a period of months, or they could take self-paced courses, which allow them to complete coursework on their own schedule. Private language schools offer beginning, intermediate, advanced and business language courses that cover vocabulary building, conversation enhancement, reading comprehension, grammar study and writing practice. These schools may offer certificates of completion, which can be sent to universities or employers.

Individual online courses for learning spoken English are widely available. Students will study things like basic, intermediate and advanced English, business English and academic English.

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