Contact FutureLearn for Support
Skip main navigation
We use cookies to give you a better experience, if that’s ok you can close this message and carry on browsing. For more info read our cookies policy.
We use cookies to give you a better experience. Carry on browsing if you're happy with this, or read our cookies policy for more information.
Online course

Exploring English: Shakespeare

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

Exploring English: Shakespeare

Explore the English language through Shakespeare’s plays

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.

What topics will you cover?

  • Romeo and Juliet
  • Hamlet
  • Much Ado About Nothing
  • The Tempest
  • Macbeth

Our video tutor will guide you through the course and look at some of the words and expressions that Shakespeare introduced to the English language.

Short quizzes will check your understanding and you’ll be asked to share your ideas and opinions on the topics Shakespeare raises.

When would you like to start?

  • Date to be announced

Who is the course for?

This course is for people who are learning English and interested in the language and legacy of William Shakespeare.
The material is designed for non-native English speakers who have studied English to around intermediate level (approximately B1 on the CEFR).

What do people say about this course?

It was a fantastic course to do. I learnt new things that I wanted to know. It also helped me in understanding Shakespeare a lot and also in my studies.

Monika Ranjeet

Who will you learn with?

Freddie Gay

I've been an EFL teacher for more than ten years. I studied English literature for my first degree at University of Brighton and then a Master's in Applied Linguistics at the University of Cambridge.

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.


Learners collage mobile
Join this course


  • Access to this course for 8 weeks
  • Includes any articles, videos, peer reviews and quizzes

Upgrade - $64

  • Unlimited access to this course
  • Includes any articles, videos, peer reviews and quizzes
  • A Statement of Participation when you complete over half the course