One-to-One Lessons in London Specialising in Speech and Listening Skills

Online Resources: Free English Usage, Vocabulary and Grammar Exercises and Tests
language learning study solutions

Why Do I Have These Problems with My English? A Discussion Paper to Download in PDF Format

01 On having an ear for the language
Good listening - having an ear for the language - is basic to effective language learning.

02 Language as an operating system
Arguing that language learning is a combination of acoustics and neurology.

03 Thinking about remembering
Learning a language is unconscious and therefore mainly "uncontrollable".

04 On not learning English by watching TV
Some teachers advise students to watch television in order to improve their fluency. Such advice is wrong, according to this argument.

05 British English and American English
The few differences between educated American and educated British English are just not worth bothering about.

06 The good example of Joseph Korzeniowski
Did you know that Britain's second greatest novelist was a bloody foreigner who didn't speak a word of English until he was 21?

07 The need for repetition and review
To give the brain opportunity to do its job, the language student, especially the part-time student, should organise his studies so that there is plenty of opportunity for repetition and review. This page will open in a separate window.

Listening Practice

For listening practice, and more exercises, visit my companion site, here

lessons in London

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study tips in Japanese

If you have any questions about tutorials, or wish to have more information, please email.

self-assessment tests

listening: self-assessment quiz

Poor listening skills cause a number of
problems. Do you have any of them, and
how serious are they? Print out the form
and check your score.

self-assessment tests of English language level

The four tests will give you an estimate of your fluency. Refer to the "ladder of test levels" for a description of the level you have reached.

For a printer-friendly version of these four
tests in pdf format, click here.

01 beginner: level 1-3
02 intermediate: level 4-5
03 upper intermediate-advanced: level 6-7
04 advanced: levels 8-9


For completion exercises with answers, dealing with

01. use pf prepostions at beginner, intermediate and advanced levels

02. elementary grammar and usage

03. review of verb forms and usage

please follow this link.

vocabulary and idiom
These vocabulary exercises are for advanced students. They deal with words used in idioms, and with the use of words that are similar if not synonymous.

01 advanced
02 advanced
03 advanced
04 advanced
05 advanced

06 advanced
07 advanced
08 advanced
09 advanced
10 advanced

11 advanced
12 advanced

articles: free downloads in .pdf format

The indefinite (a, an) and the definite (the) do not exist in Japanese. For this reason, Japanese students of English need practice in the use of articles.

The aim of these exercises is to show (1) when an article is used and when it is not used, and (2) when the article should be definite and when it should be indefinite.

You need Adobe Acrobat Reader for your OS from

indefinite article

01 indefinite article (a, an) a full survey with drills and exercises

definite article

03 definite article (the), with exercises and drills

error correction

practice for FCE level

01 Learning by transfusion
02 A policewoman's job
03 Terrorists in training
04 Animal doctor
05 1980: the unemployed
06 A Bad Divorce
07 Sex Discrimination
08 Mistaken Identity
09 Enterprise

Cambridge examinations practice exercises

First Certificate:
Study exercises for ESL improvement based on paper one, reading comprehension, and on paper three, English in Use, of Cambridge First Certificate in English (FCE)

Advanced English:
Study exercises for ESL improvement based on paper one, reading comprehension, and paper three, English in Use, of Cambridge Certificate in Advanced English (CAE)

Cambridge Examinations: Practice Papers

These practice tests will give you the opportunity to assess your ability to pass before you pay the examination fee.

First Certificate

use of English review
After you have completed the exercise, try two or three times to tell the story from memory. Can be used for practice for Cambridge First Certificate, Use of English.

01 the king kong kar kompany
02 the Loch Ness monster
03 city living: rubber trees
04 a Scottish father
05 strange diet with recycling potential
06 teaching by example

verbal phrases and idiom
If you learn a word, you should be able to use it in many different situations. These exercises give practice in the variety of ways a certain word can be used.

01 boil
02 burst
03 count
04 draw
05 fall
06 go on
07 house
08 know
09 set up
10 tell
11 write