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Beginning English as a Second Language

Master the basic grammatical principles and applications of the English language with this free online course.

Publisher: Saylor Academy
As a beginner second-language speaker, this course will give you an understanding of the different parts of speech and break down complex concepts in English grammar. You will learn how to read actively and thus build your vocabulary. This course also provides lessons on proofreading and making edits to your writing. It will build your foundational knowledge of the English language, so enroll today!
Beginning English as a Second Language
  • Duration

    1.5-3 Hours
  • Students

  • Accreditation


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This free course has been designed to provide learners with an understanding of the fundamentals of the English language. It begins with lessons on the parts of speech - nouns, pronouns, conjunctions, prepositions and interjections - plus their different forms and applications. You will also be introduced to other parts of speech like adjectives, verbs and adverbs. The course will also touch on ‘pre-reading’ texts. When we sit down to read something new, there are a few things we can do to make comprehension easier. The material will show you how to use context clues and previews to better follow the author’s meaning and predict the content. You will learn about some active reading concepts like summarizing, reciprocal teaching, question generation and prediction. Also, building a large vocabulary of English words will help you feel confident communicating with others. But how do we start learning new words? There are several strategies you can use every day to learn – and remember – new words. 

Furthermore you will learn about the different tenses, and how or when to apply them to convey the right meaning. In English, we use tenses to communicate when something happens. Is an event happening now? Did it already happen? The way we use verbs, called the tense of the verb, tells us this. You will learn how to recognize tenses, what makes them different, and when each is used. You’ll learn about the verb ‘to be’ and how it is used in a sentence. You will see how timelines are used to write about events in the past. Too many times, the concepts of proofreading and editing are used interchangeably, and wrongly so. Here you will learn about these two processes in writing, their order of application and function. Also, word processors have become a mainstay in writing and have proven quite useful in editing texts. Many of them have been programmed to spot spelling and, sometimes, grammatical errors. As a result, some people have become overly reliant on them. Do you think they are the best tool for spotting errors? Find out in this course as you uncover the limitations of word processors in making edits, and are provided with strategies to effectively edit your own work.  

Effective reading and writing skills are important for college and career success. This course is designed for those seeking to improve their standard English reading and writing skills to move forward with other academic courses or communication duties. It is also built for beginners, intending to acquire fundamental proficiency in English as a second language. Developing skills in a second language involves understanding how the language works and taking the time to practice it. This free online course addresses grammar concepts, expanding your vocabulary, reading actively, and basic writing strategies. It provides lessons on proofreading and editing, making recommendations on best practices for reviewing your texts. It also encourages you to work with new grammar ideas and word choices, and practice using those topics to write about yourself and expand your writing skills.

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