The British Council has developed online courses to help improve your communication skills.

We've also created courses for working professionals and jobseekers. These can all be accessed for free on the FutureLearn website.

Exploring English: Language and Culture

This course for learners of English looks at the British culture and examines English in use to help you improve your language skills.

The course will use short videos to present a different topic each week, including English as a global language, the environment, entrepreneurship, and literature.

Filmed in Great Britain, these videos will help you to develop your listening skills as you watch authentic examples of people speaking English.

Our experienced tutors will examine some of the language used in the videos and will draw your attention to useful points that will help you improve your spoken and written English.

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Exploring English: Shakespeare

Improve your English language skills by looking at the life and works of William Shakespeare and his enduring popularity.

This course will look at the life and works of William Shakespeare and take you from his birthplace in Stratford-upon-Avon to the Globe Theatre in London, from where he secured his central place in English literature.

We will look at five of Shakespeare’s plays with the help of actors and experts from around the world. They will explain and explore the universal themes Shakespeare addressed in his work.

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English for the Workplace

This free online course is for people who are learning English and who are interested in developing English language skills for employability and workplace contexts.

It will help job seekers and young professionals with the English they need to find a job and successfully function in the workplace. The course takes workplace English as its starting point and offers functional language phrases and real, authentic workplace scenarios.

By the end of the course, you'll be able to:

  • Evaluate their skill set and the kind of employment they would like
  • Improve English language performance in key areas of applications and interviews
  • Reflect on the factors involved in successful applications and interviews
  • Identify the elements of working together successfully.

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How to Succeed in the Global Workplace

Get off to a great start in your new job by learning the essential skills to succeed in a global workplace.

By the end of the course, you'll be able to:

  • Develop an understanding of the communication skills need to effectively present yourself in a professional context
  • Develop an awareness of the underlying principles of communicating effectively across different cultural environments
  • Explore the skills needed to build and maintain relationships in a professional context
  • Develop the ability to manage yourself in the modern workplace.

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Writing Better Emails

Do you write and reply to emails? Want to do it more effectively and efficiently? This course is for you.

By the end of the course, you'll be able to:

  • Apply planning and organising techniques for your writing to fit its purpose
  • Assess and adapt emails to different audiences and situations
  • Develop and edit your email to make it clear, concise and easy to understand.

Learn more about this course