Last updated October 2012
This site compiled and maintained by Arlyn Freed © 2000-2012. All rights reserved.
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Arlyn Freed's ESL/EFL Listening Resources
with reviews of web sites

•Listening materials designed for ESL/EFL students

•Authentic and semi-authentic listening materials of
  interest to ESL/EFL students.

Most sites require RealPlayer or QuickTime
   Click the links above to download these free programs.

• Do you want help conducting your own search
   listening pieces on the Internet?  Click for   search tips !


ESL/EFL Listening Materials
California Distance Learning Project
English Listening
Literacy Net
Randall's ESL


Authentic & Semi-authentic Listening Materials Videos :
     "How-to" instruction, Society and Culture

Arctic Science Journeys:
     Science & Environment

BBC Learning Zone & Poetry Outloud:
Society and Culture, Literature & Poetry (UK & US spkrs)
BBC Four: DVD Collection :
     Film/Sociocultural (UK & US speakers)

• DEAD Cultural Debates : indigenous cultures,
, Indonesia
DataSpeak : Health*
Edutopia: Education,*
     Classroom Instruction
Ethics Videos on the Web : stem cells,
     genomes, terrorism, Kant
Favorite Poem Project:

Gate to Gate : air traffic control, travel*
Functional Programming...:
     slides/text in Computer Science
Hearing Voices Special:
     Woman's History Month

Issues in Media, Lit. & Art :
     lectures on mass media & effects on society

* Contains field-specific vocabulary
NASA's Space Story:
     Science & the Universe

(New York Times) Photographer's Journals:
     Sociocultural, Civics

Radio Diaries: US culture:
     teenagers, history, prison, work

• DEAD School of Law, Bloomington:  
     Constitutional Rights

Sound : US Society
     & Culture, History

   • Story Corps :
     American Voices and Culture
Teaching American History:
     US History, academic lectures Sociology,
     human nature, American Culture

Welcome to the Planets : astronomy,
     satellites, the Hubble telescope
Will Rogers Institute : Public Service
Wisconsin Stories : US History
Women's Personal Stories : health,
     breast cancer, medicine
WPA Film Archive: 20th c. history (news)

        Audio reviews by ESL students:
         The Environment: birth defects, global warming, acid rain...

         MORE Student Reviews : fuel cells, multimedia, psychology, health...




Randall's ESL Cyber Listening Lab

Advantages:  uses Real Media Player and Windows Media Player audio

*****BEST of THE WEB for non-authentic audio! Easy navigation. Listening passages are divided by level of difficulty, topic, and style (conversational, academic, short and long passages ).
Newer audios offer slide shows for visual clues. Pre- and post-listening interactive quizzes/exercises/cloze activities; correct answers are provided.
Discussion group available. Reading transcript while listening is an option, but transcript is not provided unless requested.
Difficult vocabulary items are underlined in passage; definition with sample sentence is supplied. Question/Answer option: it's possible to e-mail questions to Randall; he will supply an audio response, linked to the site.
Links to other listening sites and sites for downloading listening software.  What's New section categorizes passages by date, allowing heavy users to quickly locate the newest materials.

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Advantages:  uses embedded audio
Searchable web site; search window located in left frame. Guest listening passages divided by subject and skill level; 10 passages available per level.
Transcript can be viewed (if desired) before, during or after listening. Discussion area includes topics such as learning English, the site, and problems using RealAudio.
Disadvantages: Post-listening tasks limited to basic comprehension questions; no vocab support. Disadvantages: More listening passages are available to members, at $3.00/month.

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CDLP new logo

Advantages: uses RealPlayer audio and video
Useful for beginning to low-intermediate -- good for listening skills, reading comprehension and language acquisition. Most stories offer 2 viewing options (full text or story outline) and 6 interactive follow-up activities to reinforce vocabulary and test comprehension, plus external web sites with additional information.
Speakers (American) read from newspaper articles to create short (1 -2 mins.) audio (and some video*) materials. *Video news stories supplied by News10 KXTV in Sacramento, California. Stories are divided by topic: "Working," "Law and Government," "Family," "School," "Health and Safety," "Housing," "Money," "Science and Technology," "Services," "Going Places" and "Nature". Materials support GED preparation.
The site has been designed for native and non-native adult English learners and can be used for self-study. Disadvantages: Audio created from reading of text has a stilted, unnatural rhythm -- site should not be used for prosaic improvement.

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Advantages: uses RealPlayer audio and video
Thousands of video interviews and support materials for EFL/ESL students. International students voice opinions in English on many topics including: Crime, Photography, Travel, University Life, Language, and Japan. Originally created by Brian Teaman.
Audio and video are semi-professional grade quality and simple but elegant page layout allows for easy navigation. Supplemental materials (when available) include a transcript and a post-listening quiz. Additional materials include interactive exercises for new vocabulary and comprehension.
Authentic non-native speakers speak English in a variety of accents, allowing students to study "international English". Advantages: Each video has a flag image noting the native country of the speaker.

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Advantages: uses RealPlayer audio and video
Authentic news stories from TV news channel CBS 5 (San Francisco, California) and CNN, archived by topic and headline. The site has been designed for ESL students and is easy to use for self-study.
"Side Bar" navigation buttons make it easy to move around site. Each archived story offers 3 viewing options: complete story (audio alone OR with video), abridged version, and written outline of story.
There are links to related sites at the end of each story. Post-task activities are interactive and students can take a listening accuracy test. Post-listening tasks: Another "side bar" menu highlights vocabulary and offers multiple choice questions about story, sequencing,and conclusions.
Check out NEW BETA version of site, which corrects many issues and offers more interaction with current materials!
Disadvantages: News is out-dated. It isn't possible to listen to the story without viewing the transcript; it would be better if transcripts were posted separately and offered as an option.

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