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7 Courses to Learn English for Working Adults

It can be extremely hard to learn a language as a working adult. Between work, family and all of our other obligations, how can anyone find time to study English?

In this post, I will show you some of the best study techniques and flexible online English courses to learn English for working adults.


7 Courses to Learn English for Working Adults

EnglishLive General and Specialized English Courses

English Live

Level: All

EnglishLive offers courses that can match your specific needs. Plus, you can focus on English to help your career, if that is your goal.

They have a general English course with 16 levels. Each level teaches you practical skills. For example, in level one, you will learn how to greet others and introduce your family.

But they also have courses for business English, travel English, job-specific English and English for competitive exams. These English courses are for people who have an intermediate level of knowledge about English. If you want to learn the basics, then it is best to start with general English and then choose a more specialized course.

The job-specific English course covers seven professional fields. If you want to learn English to work in the banking, medical, legal, travel/hospitality, science, automotive (dealing with vehicles like cars) or information technology sectors then this course will be the best for you.

FluentU Authentic English Videos

Level: All

Curated authentic video library for all levels
  • Thousands of learner friendly videos (especially beginners)
  • Handpicked, organized, and annotated by FluentU's experts
  • Integrated into courses for beginners
Learn more about FluentU
Learn more about FluentU

FluentU is a highly personalized English course that you will actually want to use during your off-work hours.

FluentU takes real-world videos—like music videos, movie trailers, news and inspiring talks—and turns them into personalized language learning lessons.

It uses a natural approach that helps you ease into the English language and culture over time. You’ll learn English as it’s spoken in real life.

FluentU has a variety of engaging content from popular talk shows, nature documentaries and funny commercials, as you can see here:


FluentU makes it really easy to watch English videos. There are captions that are interactive. That means you can tap on any word to see an image, definition and useful examples.


For example, when you tap on the word "searching," you'll see this:


Learn all the vocabulary in any video with quizzes. Swipe left or right to see more examples for the word you’re learning.


The best part is that FluentU keeps track of the vocabulary that you’re learning and gives you extra practice with difficult words. It even reminds you when it’s time to review! Every learner has a truly personalized experience, even if they’re learning with the same video.

Start using the FluentU website on your computer or tablet or, better yet, download the FluentU app from the iTunes or Google Play store. Click here to take advantage of our current sale! (Expires at the end of this month.)

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Boston English Centre Videos

Boston English Centre

Level: Beginner

This YouTube course is a good starting point for beginners. It focuses on English listening and speaking and is best for people who are trying to learn American English.

It has many types of videos that are easily organized into different categories, so you can build your own learning plan and study whenever your work schedule allows.

You can start with their English sentences playlist, where they list out various sentences related to one topic. The sentences are read aloud several times with various intonations.

Video player for learners like you
  • Interactive subtitles: click any word to see detailed examples and explanations
  • Slow down or loop the tricky parts
  • Show or hide subtitles
  • Review words with our powerful learning engine
Learn more about FluentU
Learn more about FluentU

This is a really good way to learn how native speakers naturally talk. They also have resources about everyday English conversations and business English.

Learn English with Steve Ford Videos

Learn English with Steve Ford

Level: Beginner

Steve Ford is a well-known English teacher who provides free English lessons on YouTube. Similar to Boston English Centre, this is a great self-paced learning option for working adults.

Along with the usual tips and rules, he also gives advice to people from specific regions. For instance, he has made special pronunciation videos for people who speak Chinese, Arabic, Vietnamese and so on.

Working adults will find his business English videos especially useful. He teaches learners how to speak in job interviews, introduces vocabulary that is used in offices and also talks about how to speak in professional situations.

If you are planning to take a competitive English exam, then he also has special lessons for both students and professionals.

English for the Workplace Online Course

English for the Workplace

Level: Intermediate

Master words through quizzes with context
  • Learn words in the context of sentences
  • Swipe left or right to see more examples from other videos
  • Go beyond just a superficial understanding
Learn more about FluentU
Learn more about FluentU

As the name suggests, this course is meant for people who want to use their English skills specifically for their work. The course uses videos and audio recordings of people speaking authentically in a professional setting. Learners also take part in quizzes and discussions to check their progress.

Since learners will only need two hours per week to finish this course, many people will find it easy to make time for daily studying. However, the course requires some basic English skills so only intermediate and advanced learners can enroll.

The course focuses on topics like interviews, working with colleagues, starting a new job and other relevant skills.

Speak English Professionally on Coursera


Level: Intermediate to advanced

This course focuses more on face-to-face conversations than the other courses on this list. It uses videos, quizzes, role plays (acting out a realistic scene) and assignments to teach professional English. It also has specific lessons on online discussions and phone conversations.

The interesting thing about this course is that it teaches a lot about body language. It also teaches you the appropriate things to do during specific situations. The course focuses on practical skills like how to introduce yourself, how to agree or disagree with your coworkers and how to propose your ideas to others.

This online class is offered on Coursera, which makes university-quality education available to anyone online. While the course follows a set schedule, you can watch the lessons and complete assignments on your own time. You can also earn a certificate for your resume after completing this course.

Mastering English Fluency on Udemy


Stop memorizing words.
Start building sentences.
  • FluentU builds you up, so you can build sentences on your own
  • Start with multiple-choice questions and advance through sentence building to producing your own output
  • Go from understanding to speaking in a natural progression.
Learn more about FluentU
Learn more about FluentU

Level: Intermediate to advanced

If you want to improve your American English speaking skills, then this course could be for you. It focuses on the practical aspects of English speaking and aims to help learners speak like natives.

For example, you will learn to blend sounds like native speakers do so your English sounds more natural. It also helps you practice your pace, tone and intonation.

You will get three hours of video lessons where you can watch how the tutor moves their mouth to pronounce words in English. You can imitate the tutors while they are speaking.

Each lesson also focuses on one concept so learners can take their time to master the basics of English speaking. This course is offered through the online learning platform Udemy , which makes it very easy to study as a working adult—once you sign up for a course, you can access the materials at any time with no expiration date.

How to Make Time for English Practice While Working

  • Listen to podcasts while traveling: You can practice English while commuting or traveling for work. Just select an English-language podcast, download some episodes to your device and use headphones to listen to them while traveling.
  • Use multimedia learning materials: You can practice listening, reading, speaking and other skills all at once with multimedia resources. For example, the videos and courses in this article will require you to watch, listen to and sometimes read English, so you will master many skills within a short span of time.
  • Look for practice opportunities in your daily life: Talking to English speakers around you, interacting online and copying how actors in English movies speak can improve your English skills dramatically without taking extra time out of your day.


At first if it seems too hard to take a course while working, start with some video lessons. Once you get used to regular practice you can enroll in a course and see how it goes. The best thing about online learning is that you can set your own schedule and be flexible with your sessions.

Accurate, detailed word explanations made for you
  • Images, examples, video examples, and tips
  • Covering all the tricky edge cases, eg.: phrases, idioms, collocations, and separable verbs
  • No reliance on volunteers or open source dictionaries
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