This article, “The best books for online English teachers”, looks at some excellent resources for creating, planning and delivering Online English classes.

No matter where you are on your journey teaching English as a Foreign Language, continuous professional development is essential. Popular views on the best way to teach a foreign language change all the time, and it’s vital to keep up to date with the latest research and findings. It is even more critical to keep up with your continuous professional development when teaching online because it is constantly changing. Today, zoom may be in fashion, but who knows, a better one comes along in a year. Besides, even if you are an experienced EFL teacher, you might be new to teaching online, so you’re probably more than happy to get a few pointers.

Are you an English language teacher who wants to get certified as an online English teacher? If you are, look at our Trinity CertPT Teaching English Online Ofqual level 6 training course.

The best books for online English teachers

ADDIE model

Nada Aldoobie, University of Northern Colorado (2015), American International Journal of Contemporary Research,

The ADDIE model is one of the most common models used in the instructional design field as a guide to producing a practical design. This model is an approach that helps instructional designers, any content’s developer, or even teachers to create an efficient, effective teaching design.

Principles of instructed language learning

Ellis, R. (2005), Asian EFL Journal,

Principles of instructed language learning is an excellent article about second language acquisition and teaching principles. These principles address issues like:

  1. the nature of second language competence
  2. focussing on meaning and form
  3. the need to develop both implicit and explicit second language knowledge
  4. the roles of input
  5. output and interaction in learning
  6. the importance of catering to individual differences in learners
  7. the need to assess language learning in terms of both free and controlled production

Techniques and principles in language teaching

Larsen-Freeman, D. (2000), Oxford: OUP,

This publication introduces language teaching methods that include concrete examples and practical advice for teachers. The jargon-free writing style, avoidance of prescriptivism, and emphasis on self-reflection while selecting teaching methods make it especially suited to novice language teachers.

A comprehensive guide to the flipped classroom

Athuraliya, A. (2021), Creately Blog,

Flipped classrooms are growing in popularity. The flipped classroom has become one of the most effective techniques to help overcome the many challenges of remote teaching and learning. This guide walks you through the flipped classroom and explains what it is and how to implement it in your online classroom successfully. It also shows you some practical tools to simplify the process.

How to plan effective lessons for your online classroom

Athuraliya, A. (2021), Creately Blog,

A well-designed class for online teaching enables student learning, retention, and engagement. The online lesson planning practices shown in this article help you prepare successfully by creating something that meets your students’ needs.

A study of the effects of digital learning on learning motivation and learning outcome

Ming-Hung Lin, Huang-Cheng Chen, Kuang-Sheng Liu (2017), Tung-Fang Design Institute,

In today’s world, where intelligent mobile devices are popular, the Internet breaks through the restrictions on time and space and becomes a learning tool. Therefore, designing teaching activities for digital learning and flexibly applying technology tools are critical for online teachers. This article asks students for their opinions about digital learning. The research results conclude that:

  1. digital learning is more motivating than traditional teaching
  2. digital learning creates better learning outcomes than conventional teaching
  3. learning motivation shows significantly favourable effects on learning outcomes
  4. learning motivation appears to have remarkably positive effects on learning retention

The e-learning component of a blended learning course

Edyta Olejarczuk, Poznań University of Technology,

This article covers more sophisticated teaching approaches like e-learning and blended learning that provide more effective and flexible ways of delivering knowledge to students. E-learning can become a very influential part of blended learning, where some course content is delivered online. This article provides a brief overview of the fundamental issues that need considering while designing a blended learning course. More precisely, it focuses on the e-learning aspect of blended learning. It also aims at providing the reader with adopted solutions and encountered problems in the process of BL course design.

Innovations in education: remote teaching

Graham Stanley (2018), British Council,

This e-book by Graham Stanley explains how remote teaching can help overcome inequalities in education by providing access to teachers that otherwise would not be possible. Remote language teaching differs from telecollaboration. The main focus is on enabling language teaching and learning rather than on intercultural collaboration. To fully benefit from remote teaching, changes in pedagogy need to be adopted.

Tips and tricks for teaching online: how to teach like a pro!

Kaye Shelton and George Saltsman (2004), International Journal of Instructional Technology and Distance Learning,

This paper summarises some of the best ideas and practices from successful online instructors and recent literature. Suggestions include good online class design, syllabus development, and online class facilitation, offering hints for success for both new and experienced online instructors.

The core rules of Netiquette

Virginia Shea, Albion,

Netiquette is network etiquette, and it is the etiquette of cyberspace. The definition of etiquette is “The practices and forms prescribed by social convention or by authority.” In other words, Netiquette is a set of rules for behaving properly online.

Teaching and learning online

Poe and Stassen, University of Massachusetts,

Teaching and Learning Online guides you through the decisions you will need to make if you teach online. It reflects the collective experience and wisdom of the Online Fellows, UMass faculty, who had no experience teaching online until a few years ago. This guide intends to be straightforward and inviting, raising and answering the fundamental questions that novice online instructors would be contemplating.

Best practices: online pedagogy

Harvard University Information Technology, Harvard University,

This publication covers principles and tips to help you teach, regardless of whether your class is entirely in-person, fully online, or a little bit of both. This guide contains general advice, various course types, and tips on encouraging student engagement. It focuses on the most common and most effective online teaching practices to keep things simple.

The end of the list

Teaching English online is a learning curve for most of us. Many teachers have been teaching English online for years. However, many of us have jumped on the bandwagon only recently due to the current global situation. And now that we’re doing it, we realise how great it is!

We hope that our list of best books for online English teachers helps you improve your teaching style.