Free Study Guides for the

English Basics

Before you try out our practice questions and flashcards, why not go through our study guides to see what the rules for grammar and usage in English look like. You may learn just enough to boost your score, both on our practice tests and when you take a standardized Reading or English-related test. Our free Study Guides can give you a step up when it comes to improving your spoken and written English. We hope your experience is a great one!

Table of Contents

Sections of the English Basics


It is very difficult to read and understand written English if it doesn’t adhere to certain conventions. One of these is writing certain letters in their capital or uppercase form. If you make mistakes in this area, your writing can be quite unclear to the reader. Look through this guide for the basic rules of capitalization so you’ll be well-prepared for any English-related test and so your writing will be free of errors of this type.

Ready to review the Capitalization Study Guides? Go to study guides

Cleaning Up English

If one of your goals is to improve your use of the English language, in speaking and/or writing, this section is for you! Perhaps you have even been encouraged by an employer or colleague to “work on your English” or to “write better.” This study guide, as well as the use of our practice questions and flashcards, can help you accomplish this.

Ready to review the Cleaning Up English Study Guides? Go to study guides

Critical Reading

Success on standardized reading tests comes from more than knowing what the words are or being able to read at a good pace. These things are important, but you also need to read in a certain way. This is called being a critical reader. This type of reading involves, basically, thinking, before, while, and after you read. Check out this guide to help you improve your reading skills so you can tackle those tough reading questions on tests. The skills you gain will also help you get more out of things you read just for fun!

Ready to review the Critical Reading Study Guides? Go to study guides

Literary Terms

Do literary terms like analogy and expository trip you up? These are not words we use in most general conversations, but it would still be good to know what they mean, just in case! And, if you are facing a standardized test in an English-related area, you’ll definitely want to have words like this in your vocabulary, just to understand the questions. Use this study guide to help you review things like this that you may not remember from that high school English class.

Ready to review the Literary Terms Study Guides? Go to study guides

Parts of Speech

All the words in the English language can be divided into eight categories, or parts of speech. Being able to specifically define the parts of speech is not important, in itself, but knowing which is which can be helpful when taking English-related tests.

A few tests still ask you to find the nouns, adjectives, etc. in a sentence. Many more tests assume you know the differences among these various word types and can use this knowledge to construct meaningful and clear written material or answer questions about sentence structure. Use this study guide to help you understand the parts of speech and utilize this knowledge as you take tests.

Ready to review the Parts of Speech Study Guides? Go to study guides


Sometimes, writing correctly and making your message clear is simply a matter of inserting the right punctuation mark in the right place. The insertion of a comma, apostrophe, or period can make a world of difference in how your written message is received and whether or not it is understood and valued by the reader. Use this study guide to review the basic rules for using all those little dots and dashes and make your writing the best it can be!

Ready to review the Punctuation Study Guides? Go to study guides

Sentence Structure

What is a complete sentence and what is not? How do you structure a sentence so it is clearly meaningful? What are some common writing errors that can ruin an otherwise great sentence? All of these questions and many more are answered in the guide to sentence structure. Use it to prepare for English-related tests and for the type of writing that is valued and expected in most jobs and careers.

Ready to review the Sentence Structure Study Guides? Go to study guides

The Writing Process

Your writing tells a lot about you. It reflects on you, as a person, as well as showing what you know about a particular topic. Whether you are preparing for a writing test or you just want to put your best written material out there, this guide can help you refine the process and your skills.

Ready to review the The Writing Process Study Guides? Go to study guides

Word Usage

Using the wrong word or using it in the wrong form can really trip you up on a standardized test. It can also make you sound like you don’t know your subject when you are trying to explain something to others. Take some time to review the things in this guide, from commonly-confused words to grammar rules, we’ll help you get on the right track to improve your spoken and written English.

Ready to review the Word Usage Study Guides? Go to study guides
Student studying with a cup of coffee

Hopefully, these study guides have helped you understand more about the intricacies of the English language and how to properly use it when you speak and write. Let us know how you’re doing through Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest, Instagram, or YouTube. Or shoot us an email at Best wishes and we’d love to hear from you!