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PolyU Library

Find Resources for Self-Directed English Language Learning

A guide to introduce various useful resources for self-directed English language learning

English for University Studies

Writing academic English at the university level can be tough. To get you started, browse this selection of e-books and other online guide books on academic writing, vocabulary enhancement, and writing in the disciplines. If you've already started writing, consult the list of online reference books, including dictionaries, thesauri, and encyclopedias--available at the Library, and review the open online courses and other online tools to help you meet your language proficiency goals.

ELC Open Online Courses

ELC Open Online Courses is a platform that prepared by the English Learning Centre (ELC) of PolyU. It hosts a series of MOOCs courses related to skills for communication in English, which aims at helping students in pursuing academic and professional excellence.

  • Upgrading Your Grammar
    helps YOU improve the grammar that YOU need to successfully complete your university studies! Join this course to master the language skills you need to succeed.
  • Academic Skills for Independent Learners
    helps YOU improve the academic English that YOU need to successfully complete YOUR university studies! Join this course to self-study, practise and master academic English.
  • Learning4Life
    helps YOU become an independent learner and improves YOUR language skills! Log-on, laugh, like and learn!
  • Read to Know!
    is for YOU to read more and know more! Join the course and increase YOUR knowledge and develop YOUR critical thinking skills.
  • Learning English through Short Stories
    helps you increase your reading proficiency and develop your language and literacy skills!

Clarity English

Clarity English

This platform provides online courses for English learners with practice activities, instructions and references. Currently, the Library subscribed to the following 4 modules:  

Online Self-Access Project (ICOSA)

The Online Self-Access Project (ICOSA)

The Online Self-Access Project (ICOSA) was an inter-institutional project for the language centres of five tertiary institutions in Hong Kong  to create and share a range of English language self-access learning materials online via an online repository. The websites contain learning strategies for listening, reading, speaking, writing, and understanding English.

Learning Strategies include: 

Databases for English Dictionaries, Thesauri, and Encyclopaedias

Oxford Reference provides access to 100 key Oxford dictionaries and reference works in various areas including language, science, medicine, humanities, social sciences, business and management.
Credo is an online reference collection, and it features full-text content from hundreds of reference books covering a broad range of subjects. There are over 3 million entries, 200,000+ images (art, diagrams, maps and photos), and over 100,000 audio pronunciation files and sound clips.

Visual Thesaurus is an interactive dictionary and thesaurus which creates word maps that chart meanings and branch to related words.

E-books for Academic Writing