Learning English with Free Audio Lessons (ESL)

These days, Open Culture has been attracting an international audience. To give you a littlesample, 43% of our readers come from outside the US, and they come chiefly from Taiwan (lots from Taiwan lately), Germany, China, Japan, France, Spain, India, Mexico and Brazil. But if you count them all up over the past week, we have had visitors from 105 countries overall. Very gratifying.

Given this, it seems worth highlighting some podcasts that can help you improve your English. (We’re assuming that you already know some English, or you wouldn’t be here in the first place.)

The most obvious podcast to start with is the aptly titled English as a Second Language Podcast (iTunesFeedWeb Site). Put together by two former professors, this very rich and deep collection teaches students proper pronunciation, idioms and slang, and it generally gets high marks. These guys seem to have a good corner on the market, and they’re worth your time.

Now, there are other, more focused ways to learn English. If you’re a native Spanish speaker, you may want to give some attention to English for Spanish Speakers, which is otherwise called, Por Fin Aprende Ingles (iTunesFeedWeb Site).

Or if you’re mainly looking to improve your English for business purposes, you can check out Business English Pod (iTunesFeedWeb Site), which will teach you to function effectively in an American business environment. Another option is ESL Business News (iTunesFeedWeb Site), a weekly podcast that presents international business news in clear, slowly spoken English. As you listen to the podcast, you can also read a transcript at the same time.

Finally, if you’re looking for something less formal and a little more quirky, you can also always spend a little time listening to The Bob and Rob Show: Weekly English Lessons from a Yankee and a Brit (iTunesFeedWeb Site). This unconventional show often uses humor to teach grammar and idioms to intermediate-to-advanced students, and you’ll get a feel for both American and English accents.

To learn more languages, click to see our collection: How to Learn Languages for Free: Spanish, English, Chinese & 37 Other Languages,

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Open Culture was founded by Dan Colman.