Free Online English Courses for Adults

Instructor: Carrie Soucy
Adults seeking English courses online will find many no-cost options. Read on to learn about the classes available for different types of learners, and where to find these courses.

Overview of Free English Courses Available Online

Free English courses are available online for adults seeking career development, GED test preparation help or assistance in learning English as a second language. Options include comprehensive multi-chapter courses taught via video or written lessons, or individual video seminars and tutorials. Most free courses do not award college credit.

Where to Find Free Courses

Many free online English courses and seminars for professional development are offered as OpenCourseWare or on YouTube by universities. For example:

  • The New Jersey Institute of Technology provides free technical writing and proposal writing courses on its OpenCourseWare site (
  • Schools such as Northwestern University and USC have YouTube channels featuring video lessons in business writing.
  • Massachusetts Institute of Technology hosts a large collection of free English-related courses on its OpenCourseWare site, including courses on expository writing, technical communication, Shakespeare, American literature and more.
  • Class Central ( is a database of more than 50 free grammar and writing courses, ranging from fiction writing to writing for the sciences, offered by universities around the world.

Community Colleges

Some community colleges have free English as a Second Language courses that can be completed partially or fully online. Students typically must register for these classes. Online English Courses for Adults has an extensive collection of online English courses for adults hoping to grow their careers, earn high school diplomas, or pass ESL tests. All courses are self-paced and may be accessed by students at their convenience. Courses include:

Student Need Courses Available
Professional Development Customer Service Email Etiquette,
Writing Skills for Business,
Technical Writing
GED Test Prep GED Language Arts Part I: Reading,
GED Language Arts Part II: Writing
ESL TOEFL Test Prep and Practice,
Accuplacer ESL Language Use Test,
Accuplacer ESL Reading Skills Test,
Accuplacer ESL Sentence Meaning Test,
Accuplacer ESL Listening Test

Earning College Credit

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To learn more, visit our Earning Credit Page

Transferring credit to the school of your choice

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