Online course in Languages & Cultures

Exploring English: Language and Culture

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

  • Duration 4 weeks
  • Weekly study 2 hours
  • Learn Free
  • Extra benefits From $59 Find out more

Why join the course?

On this course, you will learn about British life and culture, and improve your English language skills and knowledge.

Through short videos, you will learn about different popular culture topics as well as ways of life in the UK, including English as a global language, the countryside, music, 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. You will also examine some of the language used in the videos and analyse its use and learn how to use it again in practice.

The course draws on the British Council’s expertise in online learning. It is one of two courses from its Exploring English course collection.

You can find out more about this course in Chris Cavey’s post for the FutureLearn blog: 3 tips for getting the most out of Exploring English.

What topics will you cover?

English: the global language

  • Why is English so widely used?
  • How does technology help you learn?
  • Language focus: passives
  • Useful expressions

Music: making a difference

  • What does British music mean to you?
  • Music and society
  • Language focus: clauses

Countryside: a green and pleasant land

  • What do people think about the British countryside?
  • A visit to the Lake District in north-west England
  • A look at the different parts of the UK
  • Language focus: description

Literature: books and identity

  • British literature
  • Shakespeare and the Globe Theatre
  • Anniversaries in British literature
  • Language focus: comparatives and superlatives

When would you like to start?

Most FutureLearn courses run multiple times. Every run of a course has a set start date but you can join it and work through it after it starts. Find out more

What will you achieve?

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

  • Reflect on different popular culture topics as well as ways of life in the UK
  • Explore English as a global language
  • Develop your listening skills as you watch authentic examples of people speaking English
  • Reflect on language in use
  • Develop language skills and practise using new language
  • Discuss the countryside, music, and literature

Who is the course for?

This course is for non-native English speakers who have studied English to around intermediate level (approximately B1 on the CEFR).

Who will you learn with?

Genevieve  White

Genevieve White

I've taught English in Hungary, Romania, China and the UK. At the moment I teach in Shetland and I also write English language teaching materials.

David Lewis

David Lewis

I have been working in English language teaching for over twenty years in Europe and Africa, teaching a wide range of classes to everyone from 5 years old and up!

Tina Pole

Tina Pole

I started teaching in Hong Kong for The British Council in 1998 but I've been living in Italy for the last 12 years.

Who developed the course?

The British Council is on the ground in six continents and over 100 countries connecting the best of UK culture with a global audience and providing high-quality English language courses.

Join this course

Start this course for free, upgrade for extra benefits, or buy Unlimited to access this course and hundreds of other short courses for a year.

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  • Access to this course for 6 weeks

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  • Access to this course for as long as it’s on FutureLearn
  • A print and digital Certificate of Achievement once you’re eligible
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  • Access to this course, and hundreds of other FutureLearn short courses and tests for a year
  • A printable digital Certificate of Achievement on all short courses once you’re eligible
  • The freedom to keep access to any course you've achieved a digital Certificate of Achievement on, for as long as the course exists on FutureLearn
  • The flexibility to complete your choice of short courses in your own time within the year
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