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Learning English

Featuring a selection of items from our Learning English (ESOL) collection.
Updated: 18/02/2016 3:05 p.m.

Items on this page include books from the Penguin Readers series which are easy reading to improve your English, speaking and listening, IELTS and general learning English resources.



Barack Obama book cover from Penguin Readers series.

Barack Obama

Level 2 Elementary Penguin Readers

by Coleen Degnan-Veness

Call No: 923.2 OBA DEG

In January 2009, a new American president moved into the White House. But who is Barack Obama? What do we know about his family and his early life? Why did he want to be a politician? And how did he get the top job? This is his story.

Stories of Survival book cover from Penguin Readers series.

Stories of Survival

Level 3 Pre-Intermediate Penguin Readers

by Fiona Beddall

Call No: BED

Survival Fiction
Some people choose adventure. Others suddenly find themselves in danger in their ordinary lives. This book tells the true stories of survivors. In the Antarctica cold or the Sahara Desert heat, in the wide Atlantic Ocean or a small Rwandan bathroom, these people have known terrible suffering - but have lived.

Evening Class book cover from Penguin Readers series.

Evening Class

Level 4 Intermediate Penguin Readers

by Maeve Binchy

Call No: BIN

Contemporary Fiction
Thirty people join an Italian evening class. All have their own reasons. Connie needs to escape from an unhappy home life; Lou has criminal intentions. Aidan and Signora have organised the classes. All their lives are changed forever.

Northanger Abbey book cover from Penguin Readers series.

Northanger Abbey

Level 6 Advanced Penguin Readers

by Jane Austen

Call No: AUS

Historical Fiction
Visiting the fashionable city of Bath, 17-year-old Catherine Morland looks for the excitement she finds in romantic fiction. She makes friends and falls in love. But when she is invited to Northanger Abbey, she experiences desperate unhappiness. What is real, and what is the product of her wild imagination?

Listening book cover.


A2 pre-intermediate

by Chris Flint

Call No: 428.34 FLI

Develop key listening skills and become more confident when listening to English, however it is spoken.
To improve your listening skills, you need to hear real conversations. That’s why Collins Listening (A2) is based entirely on 20 authentic recordings. It will help you understand what is said to you in a variety of situations, and make sure everything you learn is useful.
Practise listening to real English in a range of accents by native and non-native speakers.

Speaking book cover.


A2 pre-intermediate

by Rhona Snelling

Call No: 428.34 SNE

Develop key speaking skills and become more confident when speaking in English.
To improve your speaking skills you need to learn how to get your message across in the right way and make sure people understand what you say. With Collins Speaking (A2) you will learn what to say and how to say it, by practising the right words, phrases and pronunciation.
Includes practice on:
• meeting new people
• buying and ordering things
• speaking on the phone
• apologizing
• asking for and giving opinions
• making a complaint
• agreeing and disagreeing

Sound Foundations book cover.

Sound Foundations

Learning and teaching pronunciation

by Adrian Underhill

Call No: 421.520 UND

An ideal introduction to the English phonological system and an invaluable resource for teachers and students.

Work On Your Accent book cover.

Work On Your Accent

by Helen Ashton

Call No: 421.6 ASH

Clearer pronunciation for better communication
If your English accent is letting you down, this is the perfect book for you. You'll see and hear how to soften the influence of your mother tongue and speak clear English everyone will understand.
Professional accent coaches Sarah and Helen show you how to pronounce each sound and when to use them. They will help you recognize why your native language makes you mispronounce certain sounds and which sounds you therefore need to focus on.

Tree or Three? book cover.

Tree or Three?

An elementary pronunciation course

by Ann Baker

Call No: 428.34 BAK

Enjoyable pronunciation practice of English sounds, word stress and intonation for beginner-level students.
This updated edition retains its simplicity and straightforward syllabus. The emphasis on minimal pairs makes pronunciation practice light-hearted and accessible. 
• Clear rubrics for exercises with answer key and improved navigation make the material even more user-friendly.
• Each unit offers comprehensive practice of sounds, with additional work on stress and intonation.
• The accompanying audio CDs give lots of listening and pronunciation practice.
This pack contains a set of 3 audio CDs.

Ventures Basic Workbook cover.

Ventures Basic Workbook

by Gretchen Bitterlin

Call No: 428.24 BIT

Ventures is a six-level, standards-based ESL series for adult-education ESL.
This Basic Workbook provides reinforcement exercises for each lesson in the Student's Book, an answer key for self-study, grammar charts, and examples of a variety of forms and documents. It also includes a self-study CD for improving listening, grammar, and reading comprehension.

Ventures 4 book cover.

Ventures 4 Workbook

by Gretchen Bitterlin

Call No: 428.24 BIT

Ventures is a six-level, standards-based ESL series for adult-education ESL.
The Workbook provides reinforcement exercises for each lesson in the Student's Book, an answer key for self-study, grammar charts, and examples of a variety of forms and documents.

Bridge to IELTS book cover from Penguin Reader series.

Bridge to IELTS

Pre-intermediate - intermediate band 3.5 to 4.5 student's book

by Susan Hutchinson

Call No: 428.24 HUT

Designed for students who want to start an IELTS preparatory course.
The 120 hour course takes students at Pre-intermediate level up to Intermediate level. By the end of the course students should have the knowledge, skills and confidence to embark on an IELTS preparatory course. 

Complete IELTS Bands 4 to 5 book cover.

Complete IELTS Bands 4 to 5

Student's book without answers

by Guy Brook-Hart

Call No: 428.24 BRO

Combines the very best in contemporary classroom practice with stimulating topics aimed at young adults wanting to study at university.
It is designed to introduce students to the critical thinking required for IELTS and provide strategies and skills to maximise their score. The 10 topic-based units offer step-by-step approach to completing the different task-types for reading and listening and stimulating speaking activities to increase confidence and fluency. A Language Reference provides further grammar and vocabulary explanations and examples while Writing and Speaking References complete with tasks, sample answers and exercises.
The Student's Book includes a full IELTS practice test, and a CD-ROM containing additional skills, grammar and vocabulary exercises.

Complete IELTS bands 5 to 6.5 book cover.

Complete IELTS bands 5 to 6.5

Student's book with answers

by Guy Brook-Hart

Call No: 428.24 BRO

Aimed at young adults wanting to study at university Complete IELTS Student's Pack is ideal for self-study.
The pack consists of the Student's Book with Answers with CD-ROM and the Audio CDs which contain all the material for the listening activities. The Student's Book with Answers contains 8 topic-based units with stimulating activities to ensure that students gain skills practice for each of the four papers of the IELTS exam. It also contains a complete IELTS practice test to allow students to familiarise themselves with the format of the exam. The CD-ROM contains additional skills, grammar, vocabulary and listening exercises.

Succeed in IELTS book cover.

Succeed in IELTS

Ideal for both the academic and the general training modules

by Andrew Betsis

Call No: 428.24071 BET

IELTS candidates are guided step-by-step through the different tasks of the IELTS Speaking section.
All the common IELTS topics are covered including an IELTS Speaking exam guide analysing the IELTS Speaking section part by part. 
Ten theme-based units help candidates increase their knowledge of vocabulary and communicate confidently in English.
The book is updated with all the revisions to the IELTS test up to 2012.

Action Plan for IELTS book cover.

Action Plan for IELTS

by Vanessa Jakeman

Call No: 428.34 JAK

A short, self-study guide for students about to take the IELTS test.
The book is organised by paper and examines each question type in detail. It gives students a last-minute action plan, providing examples, mini practice tasks and strategies to maximise their band score in the test.
Action Plan for IELTS is available for both the Academic and General Training module. The Academic module is suitable for students around Band 6+ and the General Training module for students around Band 5+. A Self-study Student's Book and an Audio CD are also available.

Read This! book cover.

Read This!

Intro: Fascinating stories from the content areas

by Daphne Mackey

Call No: 28.64 MAC

A four-book reading series designed for adult and young adult ESL students at the high beginning to intermediate levels.
It contains fifteen fascinating stories relating to the fields of Education, Sociology, Science, Marketing, and TV and Film Studies. For example, students read about schools in which students, not teachers make the rules; apartments that are designed to be difficult to live in; and reality TV shows in which the audience likes the meanest judges the best.

English Language Teaching Matters book cover.

English Language Teaching Matters

A collection of articles and teaching materials

by Michael Berman

Call No: 428.0071 BER

Michael Berman, an English as a Foreign Language teacher, presents a collection of the articles and materials he has written on the subject over many years previously unpublished in book form.
As well as articles on particular approaches to language teaching, there are plenty of practical teaching materials to make use of with students: first day activities, for example, stories with suggestions for follow up work and lead ins to introduce new topics. There is something for everyone.



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