Swedish language (Image by photoangel on Freepik)

From “Hej, Tack” to “Jag talar flytande svenska”: Let’s dive into student-budget ways to learn Swedish!

Hey there, language enthusiasts! Sweden might be an English-friendly haven, especially in Stockholm, but mastering Swedish can open up exciting possibilities, especially if you’re eyeing a job in this beautiful country post-graduation. Today, I’m thrilled to share my journey of learning Swedish on a student budget, and guess what? All the resources and courses I’ll talk about are absolutely free!

Swedish Courses for International Students at Stockholm University (SU)

Last October and November, I embarked on the adventure of the first introductory Swedish course at SU. Trust me, it was a rollercoaster of challenges and victories. The course was a comprehensive package, from daily chit-chats to delving into Swedish grammar intricacies like word order and conjunctions. Two lectures a week, totaling 4 hours, kept things intense. But what made it memorable? The teacher’s commitment and humor! He sprinkled Swedish jokes throughout the class, boosting our enthusiasm for both the language and the culture. Keep an eye on the SU website for the availability of introductory courses. Oh, and as a health informatics student at KI and SU, you’re in luck – you get to sign up for SU’s Swedish courses for free!

Swedish courses offered at SU (photo credits: Stockholm University)

Complimentary Swedish Course by Karolinska Institutet (KI)

Hey KI students, don’t feel left out! KI has your back with complimentary Swedish courses for international students enrolled for over 8 weeks. Organized by Folkuniversitetet, these courses offer flexibility in scheduling, allowing you to choose between lectures twice or once a week. Plus, the class sizes are smaller, making it easier to get personal attention from the teachers. Just a heads up, KI covers the cost of your first Folkuniversitetet course; after that, you might need to dip into your student budget for additional courses.

Language class (Photo credits: by Avier Trueba on Unsplash)

SFI Swedish Course: Your Language Odyssey Continues

So, you’ve conquered Folkuniversitetet, but your Swedish journey doesn’t have to end there. Enter SFI (Swedish for Immigrants), the free Swedish language education option for non-native speakers in Sweden. Getting into SFI can be a bit like navigating a maze – first, register at a city hall in Sweden and obtain your personal number. Once you’ve got that, you can apply for SFI courses online and have a quick interview to tailor your study path to your preferences. It’s a bit of a process, but hey, free Swedish education, right?

Language Learning Apps: Your Digital Companions

For those who love learning at their own pace, the digital realm is your playground. Duolingo, the household name in language apps, offers a gamified approach to spice up your learning process. And guess what? SFI has its own Swedish learning app called “En or Ett,” featuring different modes and mini-games to jazz up your Swedish learning journey. Sure, apps won’t replace formal classes, but they’re fantastic stepping stones, especially for beginners.

Talk Swedish with Your Swedish Squad

Here’s the golden nugget of language learning – talk, talk, and talk some more! Engage with your Swedish friends, toss in a casual “Hej, Hur mår du?” and attempt small talk in Swedish. Yes, it might feel like navigating uncharted waters initially, and you might stumble over words, but trust me, this is THE most effective way to become a Swedish language maestro in no time!

My Swedish bestie (photo credits: Sweta Ghaisas)

There you have it, language enthusiasts – your guide from “Hej, Tack” to mastering Swedish! Whether you’re drawn to the vibrant streets of Stockholm or eyeing a future in Sweden, embracing the local language is your key. Remember, the real magic happens when you talk. Engage with Swedish friends, stumble through those initial conversations, and watch your Swedish fluency bloom. As you venture into Swedish syntax and dance with umlauts, savor the journey. Learning a language isn’t just about words; it’s about connections, culture, and endless possibilities. So, fellow language explorers, as you navigate the Swedish linguistic landscape, may your journey be as delightful as a Swedish summer day.

Lycka till! (Good luck!) 🇸🇪🌟

Martin - Health Informatics

Martin - Health Informatics

I am Martin, 27, currently studying Health Informatics at Karolinska Institutet and Stockholm University. I’m passionate about using data science to improve human well-being. Discovering this programme was a pivotal moment, and I've found it to be one of my best decisions. The programme is enriching my network and perspectives by hosting talks with alumni, government representatives, and startups. An interesting fact about me is that I once aspired to be a curator and artist specializing in Chinese art.




Hi! Those are some nice tips here! I would also strongly recommend to LISTEN to Swedish as much as you possibly can! It is the most natural way of learning a language - as kids do it. When you go running, for a walk, on the bus/bike to uni, in the lab... It is hard to understand everything from the start, but gradually you will understand more and more and then you will also feel more confident with talking to Swedes! And maybe they won't switch to English straight away as you will be able to pronounce the words with the natural melody of the language heard so often in those podcasts that you listened to for hours. Plus, you will get to know some interesting stuff by choosing topics of the podcasts/ audiobooks you like!

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