Open Educational Resources and English as a Second Language

This collection was curated by an ASCCC OERI discipline lead. A comprehensive list of current discipline leads is available.

Resources are listed in order of level, from Transfer Level English Equivalent (TLEE) to 4 levels or more below TLEE.
The resources listed on this page have been evaluated using the OER for ESL Evaluation Rubric. Please complete this rubric if you would like to add an evaluation of a resource for ESL. Your contribution is welcome!

More resources can also be found organized various ways in an Airtable – set up an account to access ESL OER for CCC Brief; set up an account to access OER for California Community College ESL.
Using OER? Share the OER for ESL that you are using.

Transfer Level English Equivalent

  • English Composition 1 (Quillbot)
    License: “This courseware includes resources copyrighted and openly licensed by multiple individuals and organizations. Click the words “Licenses and Attributions” at the bottom of each page for copyright and licensing information specific to the material on that page.”
    Level: TLEE; Skill: writing; Resource type: Textbook
    Description: Composition instruction including success skills, reading strategies, writing process, research process and grammar.
  • Coalescence (Krause, 2022) – Google Sites (CC BY-NC-SA)
    Level: TLEE; Skills: Writing; REsource Type: Textbook; Description This is a writing textbook with the theme of Universal Human Rights. The approach is Writing Process with a focus on Discussion Essay, Definition Essay and Cause and Effect Essay. As of Nov 2022, this textbook is in pilot stage.
  • Synthesis (Krause, 2022) – Google Sites (CC BY-NC-SA)
    Level: TLEE; Skills: Writing; Description: This writing course for advanced students of ESOL offers an integrated approach to metacognition and critical thinking skills, research and source evaluation skills, standard composition and grammar skills, and academic vocabulary skills.

Transfer Level English Equivalent/ 1 Below

  • Excelsior Online Writing Lab (Excelsior College) (CC BY)
    Level: TLEE,1 below TLEE; Skills: writing, research, APA, MLA, Presentations
    Resource type: Online Course, Reference text
    Description: Online writing lab with videos and interactive quizzes about the writing process, APA and MLA, plagiarism, common grammar errors (mostly for native speakers), and argumentation.
  • ESL/Academic English II (Louden) – Canvas Commons (CC BY-NC-SA)
    Level: 1 below TLEE, TLEE; Skills: writing, reading, vocabulary, all
    Resource Type: Course
    Reading and writing are the primary focus. Reading texts are links to authentic readings. Topics covered include MLA/APA, rhetorical strategies, audience and purpose, and forming arguments.
  • Oral Communication for NNS of English (Kochem Ghosh, Compton and Cotos) Pressbooks (CC-BY-NC-SA)
    Level: TLEE, 1 Level below, 2 levels below; Skills: pronunciation; Resource Type: Textbook
    Description from text: “This textbook includes materials on listening, speaking, lexicogrammar, pragmatics, and pronunciation. This digital book is meant to serve as an instructional tool for both learners and teachers in the field of pronunciation. Topics covered include vowel and consonant sounds, word stress, thought groups, prominence, and intonation.”

One Below Transfer Level English Equivalent

  • Food and Culture (Poupard) (CC BY-NC-SA) 
    Level: 1-below TLEE; Skills: Reading, Writing, Listening, Speaking, Grammar;
    Resource type: Thematic Module
    Description This is a thematic, integrated skills unit on food and culture with links to authentic texts
  • Media Literacy (Moore) (CC BY-NC-SA)
    Level: 1-below TLEE; Skills: Reading, Writing, Listening, Speaking, Grammar;
    Resource type: Thematic Module
    Description: This is a thematic, integrated-skills unit on media literacy with links to authentic texts.
  • Read Faster, Understand More (Krause, 2023) – Google Sites (CC BY-NC-SA)
    Level: 1 below TLEE; Skills: Reading, vocabulary: Resource type: Textbook
    Description: Textbook with accompanying PowerPoint slides covers reading strategies for advanced readers. Articles, poems, videos about conformity/non-conformity range from Jackie Robinson, Dead Poets Society, George Takei, Trump’s Wall, and more. Vocabulary worksheets included. Interactive multimedia resource.
  • Read Up! (Krause, 2023) – Google Sites (CC BY-NC-SA)
    Level: One Below TLEE; Skills: Reading, Vocabulary Resource type: Textbook; Description: This is an advanced reading strategies textbook with various themes such as Sleep, Robots, Games, Work Distractions, Fashion, and Tipping.

Two Below Transfer Level English Equivalent

  • BC Reads: Adult Literacy Fundamental English 6 (Ivits) (CC BY)
    Level: 2 below TLEE; Skills: Reading, grammar instruction, vocabulary, listening, speaking, writing, Presentations, using technology; Resource type: Textbook, workbook, reader, and course pack with instructional essays about creating a digital story.
    Description: This textbook would be useful for a digital storytelling project. Course pack may be accessed at the link under “readable” or through BC Open repository. Multimedia texts organized thematically using a genre approach.
  • PDX Journeys: Studying and Living in the U.S. (Calderon) (CC BY-NC)
    Level: 2 below TLEE: Skills: reading, vocabulary; Resource type: Textbook
    Description: An intermediate reading and vocabulary textbook about teachers and students in Portland. Comprehension questions, discussion questions, reading strategies, vocabulary from AWL.
  • ESL Intermediate Reading and Writing (Al Haider) (CC BY)
    Level: 2 below TLEE; Skills: reading, writing, vocabulary; Resource type: Textbook
    Description: Intermediate-level reading/writing textbook uses themes from the novel Uprising. Includes pre-reading, comprehension questions, graphic organizers, and writing prompts.
  • LCC College Transition Listening and Speaking (Lane Community College) (CC BY-NC)
    Level: 2 below TLEE, 1 below TLEE; Skills: listening, speaking, vocabulary; Resource type: Course
    Description: Audio-visual texts (e.g., This American Life and TED Talks) accompanied by lesson plans, worksheets, and slide presentation. Includes worksheets and instructions on strategies for listening, presentations, research, and more. Multimedia, interactive, complete and accurate. Uses authentic texts and is organized thematically using an integrated skills approach.
  • OER Communication with Hamilton (Ramirez) (CC BY-NC-SA)
    Level: 2 below TLEE, 1 below TLEE; Skills: listening, speaking, pronunciation, vocabulary; Resource type: Workbook; Multimedia (interactive, audio-visuals). 
    Description: Workbook teaches IPA, pronunciation (stress, intonation), vocabulary and presentation skills using an integrated skills approach through examples from Hamilton.
  • Academic Writing Exercises (Krause, McCleod) – Google Sites (CC BY-NC-SA)
    Level: 3 below TLEE,2 below TLEE: Skills: Grammar instruction, writing: Resource type: Multi-media (interactive, audio-visuals)
    From the text: “This is a collection of interactive Google Forms to complement a series of instructional videos by Shaun Macleod and Mark Roberts of SmrtEnglish. Each exercise includes a short video along with original, self-grading comprehension questions and analysis of contextual grammar examples designed for upper-level writing students of English for Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL).

Three Below Transfer Level English Equivalent

  • BC Reads: Adult Literacy Fundamental English 4 (Ivits) (CC BY)
    Level: 3 below TLEE; Skills: grammar instruction, reading, vocabulary, listening, speaking, writing: Resource type: Textbook, Workbook
    Reader and course pack about human rights and biographies. Course pack is available at the link under “readable” or search BC Open repository.
  • BC Reads: Adult Literacy Fundamental English 5 (Ivits) (CC BY)
    Level: 3 below TLEE; Skills: grammar instruction, reading, vocabulary, writing
    Resource type: Textbook, Workbook
    Reader and Course Pack about the brain (intuition, how we learn, memory, etc).  Course pack is available at the link under ”readable” or search BC Open repository.
  • Getting to Know You (Ferguson) – LibreTexts; Also on Canvas Commons (CC BY-NC-SA)
    Level: 3 below TLEE: Skills: grammar instruction, vocabulary, reading, speaking, listening, writing. Resource type: Thematic Module
    From the author: “In this ESL module you will learn how to interview a classmate and write a profile, or short biography. The module includes reading and vocabulary lessons, listening and speaking exercises, writing practice and grammar lessons.” Authentic text organized thematically.
  • People and Places (Ferguson) – LibreTexts; Also on Canvas Commons (CC BY-NC-SA)
    Level: 3 below TLEE; Skills: grammar instruction, vocabulary, speaking, reading, listening, writing.
    Resource type: Thematic Module
    From the text: “This module has materials to learn and practice language skills at the intermediate level in college ESL. It is recommended for the first few weeks of a semester, since it covers fundamental sentence grammar and basic email communication etiquette.” Authentic texts organized thematically.

Four or More Below Transfer Level English Equivalent

  • Low Intermediate ESL Writing (Zettelmaier) (CC BY-NC-SA)
    Level: 4 or more below TLEE, 3 below TLEE: Skills: grammar instruction, writing
    Resource type: Textbook, Workbook
    Description: Textbook using form-focused instruction  for word-to-sentence-to-paragraph writing. Covers parts of speech, sentence word order, spelling, paragraph writing.
  • In the Community: An Intermediate Integrated Skills Textbook (NorQuest College) (CC BY-SA)
    Level: 4 or more below TLEE, 3 below TLEE: Skills: functional-notional, listening, speaking, reading, writing; Resource type: Textbook
    Interactive, accurate and easy to access. Texts are not authentic but have authentic qualities (e.g., L/S video examples use authentic language and student actors). Focus is not academic.
  • Beginner ESL for Adult Learners: Teaching with Comprehensible Input (Gorokhova) (CC BY NC SA)
    Level: 4 or more below TLEE; Skills: Vocabulary, reading, speaking, writing; Approach: Teaching Proficiency through Reading and Storytelling (TPRS)
    Resource type: slides, lesson plans
    Description: Beginning lessons for 2-4 (or more) weeks of a 6 unit course. The units are intended for the instructor of the courses to use while leading the lessons with aural and verbal comprehension checks. The materials include videos, slideshows, vocabulary sheets, readings (such as original stories), teacher scripts, and simple assessments.
  • ESL Career Exploration Communicative Activities (Moore) (CC BY NC SA)
    Level: 4 or more below TLEE
    Skills: Vocabulary, reading, speaking, writing; Resource type: Canvas Commons course 
    Description: Slide shows and worksheets that guide students to learn about careers and build interview skills.
  • ESL Beginning Literacy Booklet (Holzknecht) (CC BY-NC-SA)
    Level: 4 or more below TLEE; Skills: vocabulary, literacy; Resource type: printable pdf graphics
    From the text: “These printable materials were created for beginning literacy-level adult learners and newly arrived immigrants and refugees who need to develop basic vocabulary to survive and function in our communities. In addition, the materials focus on developing pre-reading skills and pre-writing skills. The 22 units are flexible and can be easily adapted to meet the needs of your learners.”
  • BC Reads: Adult Literacy Fundamental English 1 (Ivits) (CC BY)
    Level: 4 or more below TLEE; Skills: Reading, writing, spelling and phonics, vocabulary; Resource type: Textbook, Workbook
    Reader and course pack. Word and sentence level. Focus on phonics and vocabulary building. Easy to access. Course pack is available at the link under ”readable” or go through BC Open repository.
  • BC Reads: Adult Literacy Fundamental English 2 (Ivits) (CC BY)
    Level: 4 or more below TLEE; Skills: reading, vocabulary, writing, spelling and phonics; Resource type: Textbook, Workbook
    Reader and course pack about Langston Hughes. Focus is vocabulary building, beginning grammar, phonics, and spelling. Sentence writing and listening. Easy to access, multimedia, accurate. Authentic texts organized thematically. Course pack can be accessed by following the link under ”readable” or through BC Open repository.
  • Home and School: Ten Easy Picture Stories (Krause) (CC BY)
    Level: 4 or more below TLEE; Skills: grammar, vocabulary, reading, writing
    Resource type: Textbook, Workbook
  • Description: Multimedia (interactive, audio-visuals). Short beginning textbook with ten chapters. Each chapter has pictures with sentences, followed by interactive activities. Beginning level students learn vocab such as mother, father, holiday, married and grammar such as is/are.
  • PCC OER: A Digital Workbook for Beginning ESOL (Dodson, Jordan, and Krause) (CC BY)
    Level: 4 or more below TLEE; Skills: grammar, functional-notional; Resource type: Workbook
    Description: This interactive workbook allows students to watch ESL videos (grammar and functional-notional) and complete worksheets and games based on the grammar point. Interactive, multimedia, complete, accurate and easy to access.
  • Literacy Resources (Theuninck and Diniz) (CC BY-NC-SA)
    Level: 4 or more below TLEE; Skills: literacy, phonics; Resource Type: Slides
    Description: A set of slides teaching the alphabet and beginning sound-letter correspondence.
  • A Closer Read (Krause, 2023) – Google Sites (CC BY-NC-SA)
    Level: Four or more below TLEE; Skills: Integrated; Resource Type: Textbook; Description: This reading skills workbook for low intermediate students of English is centered on the theme of hobbies such as gardening, pets, board games, music, TV, sports, social media and cooking.

This page last updated November 21st, 2022.