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Learn English

Find out how to learn English in New York City by watching these videos and clicking on the helpful links. There are hundreds of free and low-cost English for Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL) classes throughout the five boroughs. These links can help you find one in your community.

YouCanToo! Learn English... Here's How!

Here are some tips that will help you find ways to learn and practice English:
  • There are free and low-cost programs all over New York City. Use links below to find a program that is close to you!
  • You are not alone. People learn English at all different ages and for many different reasons, like helping kids with their homework, landing a better job, talking to a doctor, or going to college.
Helpful Links:

Find a Program

Mayor’s Office of Adult Education
The Mayor’s Office of Adult Education site has a Find a Program search tool to locate programs in your neighborhood in New York City. You can define your search by type of service offered (ESOL, adult literacy, GED, or job training), borough, or ZIP code.
Visit the site 

Department of Education Office of Adult and Continuing Education
The New York City Office of Adult and Continuing Education (OACE) offers over 700 free classes for adults age 21 and over. The classes are held at 175 sites throughout the boroughs, during the day, afternoon, evening, and on Saturdays.
Visit the site

City University of New York ESOL programs
CUNY classes provide free English language instruction to students seeking to improve their abilities to speak, understand, read, and write the English language. ESOL classes are offered at the beginning, intermediate, and advanced levels.
Visit the site 

Department of Youth and Community Development
Use this search tool to find free English for Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL) courses at community-based organizations in your area. These courses will help you learn and practice English.
Visit the site

Learn at your Library

Brooklyn Public Library
Learn English at the Brooklyn Public Library. The library provides free English classes for new Americans and others whose first language is not English, at dozens of locations throughout Brooklyn.
Visit the site

New York Public Library
Learn English at the New York Public Library. These branches are in Manhattan, the Bronx, and Staten Island. Class sessions begin three times a year: Fall (mid September), Winter (early January), and Spring (early April) and are for beginner and intermediate levels only.  The classes are free and open to adults age 16 and over.
Visit the site 
Find more resources to learn ESOL online

Learn English at Queens Public Library 
Every year, nearly 3,000 students learn English at libraries throughout Queens. There are two terms per year, one in the Spring (February to May), and the other in Fall (September to December). Each class runs approximately twelve weeks, with two sessions a week, amounting to twenty four sessions per term. All classes are free.
Visit the site 

Practice English in Conversation Groups

We Are New York
The We Are New York Project organizes free conversation groups across the City, in a partnership between the Mayor's Office and the City University of New York. Volunteer language leaders are trained and placed at community organizations to help immigrants practice their English and learn about helpful City services. Each of the nine episodes covers a different topic like diabetes or banking. Visit the website to sign up for a conversation group! You can also watch the show online or on NYC TV.
Visit the site 

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Did You Know?
NYC Mayor's Office of Adult Education
New York City Council