Former Sri Lanka coach Farbrace will work alongside new director of cricket Peter Moores.
The 46-year-old led Sri Lanka to this year's Asia Cup and the World Twenty20 title in Bangladesh, the country's first global trophy since 1996.
"It's fantastic to be given the opportunity to work with your own country's national team and this was an offer that I could not turn down - much as I have enjoyed working with the Sri Lankan players and sharing in their recent success," Farbrace said.
England play home test series against Sri Lanka and India this year.
"We have a lot of work to do in a short time as we prepare for the fast-approaching international season," Moores said.
"There is no doubt Paul will bring a lot of recent international experience to the England set-up."
Andy Flower stepped down as England's director of cricket in January following the team's 5-0 Ashes defeat in Australia.
- Sports & Recreation
- Peter Moores
- Sri Lanka