About Englicious

What is Englicious?

Englicious will help students:

Englicious offers teachers:

How can I access Englicious?

How do I find and use Englicious materials?

    The Englicious team:

    Englicious is brought to you by the Survey of English Usage, a world-leading research unit at University College London, independently ranked as one of the world’s leading universities, and is part-funded by the Arts and Humanities Research Council, the Economic and Social Research Council, and the Economic and Physical Sciences Research Council. We also received support from the Faculty of Arts and Humanities at UCL and from UCL Business PLC.

    The team members are Bas Aarts, Sean Wallis and Luke Pearce. Former team members are Ian Cushing, Ellen Smith-Dennis, Dan Clayton, Jill Bowie, and Seth Mehl. Artwork is courtesy of Spike Gerrell, and copyright for this is held by him. The new 'beta' web-design is by Silverdistrict.

    What do teachers say about Englicious? Watch this video.

    More videos: Englicious YouTube Channel

    Comments and feedback

    Registered users can leave comments or suggestions on pages, add questions to a forum, or contact us using the form on the website.

    Englicious is a community-driven project. Feedback from teachers is particularly welcome and helps us improve the site.

    Finding and using materials

    Searching in the Resources window

    New, only in Beta mode!

    Englicious has a new powerful search screen. Click on the Resources button at the top of the page to see it.

    • Resources are listed down the left hand side.
    • Click on a resource to see a preview. This is shown in the middle.
    • Search controls are on the right of the screen. These include
      • Search box: type search word(s) and hit Enter
      • Level: select key stage and year
      • Language in Use: select language topic
      • Grammar: select grammar term
      • Content type: select resource type – see below
    Lessonsnoun phrase

    Current tags

    Every restriction you specify is shown as a 'tag' at the top of the display. The list of resources are filtered by these tags.

    Click on the tag, clear the search or menu to remove the filter.

    The page should update automatically (if your internet connection is slow, please be patient).

    Browsing resources

    Change the sequence order with the 'sort by' control. Scroll down to see more resources. Englicious loads new resources to the bottom of the page automatically.

    Finding materials by level

    • Click on 'Level' in the blue menu to the left. The menu will expand to show 'Primary' and 'Secondary'
    • Select 'Primary' or 'Secondary'. All primary or secondary resources will be displayed on your screen, and the menu will expand further to show Key Stages.
    • Select a Key Stage. All materials for that key stage will be listed on your screen, and the menu will expand further to show year levels. 
    • Select a year level.

    Finding materials by topic

    • Click on the 'Language in use' or 'Grammar' menu to the left. The menus will expand to show lists of topics.
    • Select a topic. All materials related to that topic will be displayed on your screen. Where applicable, the menus will expand further to show sub-menus.

    Browsing by content type

    • Click on the 'Content type' menu to the left. The menu will expand to show a list of content types.
    • Select a content type. All materials from the selected content type will be displayed on your screen.
    • Content types, which are colour-coded, are as follows:
      •  Starters: bite-sized activities for classroom use, many requiring only 5 minutes or less
      •  Lessons: full classroom lessons and supporting materials
      •  Assessments: interactive exercises for practice and assessment
      •  Projects: larger resources for investigative language projects that might span across multiple days
      •  Professional development: resources to support teachers
      •  NC Specifications: the new National Curriculum specifications (in an easily searchable form)
      •  Videos: short instructional videos for a general audience
    • In this menu you will also find the Glossary, which is a complete glossary including both the non-statutory 2014 National Curriculum definitions of terms and a number of other useful terms.

    Finding materials by level, topic and type

    • Click on a filter box to select a category from the 'Level', 'Language in use', 'Grammar', or 'Content type' menus. Filter boxes appear down the right-hand side of those menus, and they look a bit like this:  
    • Click on multiple filter boxes to select multiple categories, and then press the button. Materials will be displayed that match the filter boxes you've selected.
    • Englicious remembers the search you last performed, so you can easily amend it.
    • Note: Ticked items in the same menu are added together with "or" (e.g. find resources marked for either "Year 2" or "Year 3"). Ticked items in different menus are combined with "and" (e.g. resources marked for both "Year 2" and the language topic "Vocabulary").

    Content types

    Content types, which are colour-coded, are as follows:

    •  Starters: bite-sized activities for classroom use, many requiring only 5 minutes or less
    •  Lessons: full classroom lessons and supporting materials
    •  Assessments: interactive exercises for practice and assessment
    •  Projects: larger resources for investigative language projects that might span across multiple days
    •  Professional development: resources to support teachers
    •  NC Specifications: the new National Curriculum specifications (in an easily searchable form)
    •  Videos: short instructional videos for a general audience

    Using Classroom Materials

    Getting help

    How to get help

    Englicious contains a lot of information that we hope will be helpful to teachers.

    There are also many additional explanatory pages found under the Content type menu on the left.

    Other resources


    Grammarianism - A Blog for Teachers of English (Bas Aarts)

    Slang Lexicographer - A Blog about Slang (Jonathon Green)

    Separated by a Common Language - Observations on British and American English by an American Linguist in the UK (Lynne Murphy)

    The Language Log - A General Blog about Language (Various authors)

    Language: A Feminist Guide (Deborah Cameron)

    Lingua Franca - Language and Writing in Academe (Various authors)

    Johnson - Language Column at the Economist (Robert Lane Greene)

    EngLangBlog - A Blog for A-Level English Language Students and Teachers (Dan Clayton)

    Teaching resources

    English Language Teaching Resources Archive at Queen Mary, University of London

    A-level English Language Resources at Lancaster University

    Sounds Familiar at the British Library

    Corpus For Learning resources

    About ICEBox

    ICEBoxTraditional grammars have relied on ‘made-up’ examples. Englicious is different.

    Instead of example sentences like

    we have examples like

    Our examples come from natural language corpora. They have been spoken or written by real people. Grammar is the study of the structure of actual English or it is nothing!

    Often examples are selected and presented in real time using our ICEBox database technology. This technology is also part of our ICECUP software supplied to academic linguists.

    You can see this in operation. If you reload this page you will see different examples.

    The advantages are immediately apparent. Most obviously, we can obtain as many ‘real’ examples as we like to aid classroom discussion. Let's look at some examples.

    Dynamic examples

    Note: Codes of the form [S1A-001 #1] specify the text (S1A-001) and sentence unit (#1) in ICE-GB. Spoken texts have codes starting with S, while written texts have codes starting with W.

    We also use examples in some dynamic exercises, so you can also have as many revision exercises as you like.

    Why real language is beneficial for teaching

    Grammatical concepts can seem very abstract. Stereotypical examples of nouns (cat, mat, etc.) are not much help to students when real uses may be ‘messy’ and far from stereotypical, as we have seen.

    This observation informs our approach. We believe it is necessary for students to apply grammatical concepts to real sentences in order to learn them properly. Thankfully, thanks to our corpus resources we have very many real sentences to use.

    Ultimately we want students to be able to apply what they have learned to their own language, not just stereotypical sentences they never say or write!

    Why is real language not always helpful?

    That said, there are many times when simply taking random examples of real language is not ideal for teaching purposes. Examples may be too complex or contain words that are inappropriate, particularly for younger children. And teachers often want to focus on simple structures for sound pedagogical reasons.

    So in fact, Englicious contains a variety of types of example.

    Privacy Notice

    This is the privacy notice for the Englicious website.

    It explains in plain English what data we collect on registered users and the lawful purposes we use this data for.

    It also explains what you can do if at any time you are unhappy with how we process your data.

    A separate page explains about Cookies, which are small bits of data used as part of the interface to Englicious to make it work.

    User data is different from cookies. User data is personal data as defined in European law, and we are obliged to process it accordingly.

    The data we collect

    Some personal data is collected when you register to use Englicious.

    You can edit your personal data by logging in and selecting the 'tabs' at the top of the screen.

    Your account

    Information about your account includes

    You can choose to close your account at any time by clicking on the Delete Account button at the bottom of this page.

    All of this information is securely stored. It is private to you and can only be seen by members of the Englicious team. We do not share this data with anyone else.

    We process this information to manage accounts and assist users with their enquiries (including helping them gain access to their account).

    Some data we use to support Englicious in other ways. We may report summary data (such as totals of enrolments, popular pages or differences in test scores) to research funding councils and other bodies who support this project or for academic purposes. Feedback information is used to help us promote Englicious or decide on our priorities.

    To log in you need your user name and password. You cannot log in with your email address. We believe this is safer in a school setting, as email addresses may be known by students or can be guessed.

    Managing your subscriptions

    When you first registered for Englicious we asked you to agree to receive occasional Englicious emails. These come from the address englicious-info@ucl.ac.uk.

    If at any time you do not wish to receive these emails you can

    Click on the links above to go straight to an explanation of how to do these tasks.


    In addition to their username and password, Teachers are also asked to provide their full name, their school, with address and a title for their job. They can optionally provide a telephone number.

    We ask teachers to say something about how they heard about Englicious, and other feedback information.

    Members of the public

    Members of the public are only asked to provide their full name, and a postcode. They can optionally provide a telephone number.

    We ask members of the public to say something about how they heard about Englicious, and other feedback information.


    We collect data from students (who are assumed to be under 16), extremely carefully. We only collect what we consider to be the bare minimum of data, in particular, we ask for the first name only, the name of the school, its type (primary, secondary etc.) and the year the student is in.

    We also ask all students to seek permission from a parent or guardian before registering.

    Students are not registered on the englicious-info mailing list.

    Your rights and how to exercise them

    You can perform the tasks below yourself by logging in to Englicious.

    If you have problems logging in, please email englicious@ucl.ac.uk and we will do our best to help you! Please send an email from the account you used to register. If for any reason this is not possible, we will need to perform more checks.

    Delete your account

    Edit your account

    You have a right to edit your log in details, change your password, etc.

    You also have a right to edit your additional information (teacher, student, etc).

    Unsubscribe from Englicious emails

    You have a right to unsubscribe from Englicious emails at any time.

    You can choose to re-subscribe at any time by selecting Subscribe for all mail (normal delivery).

    Note that you can unsubscribe from emails without losing any right to access Englicious.

    Change comment email settings

    Change contact settings

    Although your account information is hidden from other users, you can allow other users to contact you about a comment you made.

    Your right to complain

    You have a right to complain on behalf of yourself or others if you believe that we have not processed your data properly, or according to the explanation in this Privacy Notice.

    Informal complaints can usually be dealt with by us. You can contact us at englicious@ucl.ac.uk with a complaint in the first instance. If you are logged in, you can use the form at Contact us. If it is something that we can sort out quickly to your satisfaction we would hope that we can do this.

    Who is legally responsible for Englicious?

    Englicious is a website run by the Survey of English Usage, University College London, UK.

    University College London (UCL) is the legally responsible body for ensuring compliance with the law, and will investigate complaints of data protection breaches independently of the Survey and Englicious.

    You can write to data-protection@ucl.ac.uk to contact the UCL Data Protection Officer.

    Englicious and cookies

    What are cookies?

    You may have heard stories in the press about 'cookies'. Cookies are small units of data that are stored on your computer that can be created and accessed by a website. Cookies allow one web page to store some information and make it accessible by another. They are necessary for many sites, and should be harmless. 

    On some websites, typically shopping sites, this information can be used to track your preferences for buying certain products. If you look at a raincoat or a garden shed on one website, and find yourself seeing advertisements for raincoats and sheds on another, you are probably seeing a cookie being used!

    The UK Government has ruled that all websites, like ours, must notify you if we use cookies, and seek your informed consent. 

    How Englicious uses cookies

    Englicious does use some cookies. However we do not use them for advertising purposes. We use them for the following reasons.

    Since they are unavoidable, the simplest approach is for us to say the following: By using Englicious you consent for us to use cookies.

    If you are not happy about this then please do not use the site!