Why Study Swedish?

Sweden is a country with deep intellectual roots.  For a country of only 9 million people, Sweden boasts its share of influential people, including ABBA, Carl Linné, Ingmar Bergman and Astrid Lindgren, the author of Pippi Longstocking. By learning Swedish you can read the next Henning Mankell novel before it is translated or read Stieg Larson’s The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo in the original language.  Sweden is well renowned for their quality of life and their progressive views on a variety of social topics.   In Sweden, nearly half the government consists of women, and same-sex partners have legal rights and benefits.

Sweden prides itself on its ethics and sustainability in the business world.  They are considered to be one of the most innovative countries in the world and have a high level of research and development available.  They utilize this innovative spirit in several fields of industry, especially in the technology fields.  Sweden is a pioneer in the CleanTech movement – pushing the boundaries on clean energy options and urban vertical farming.   Ikea, H&M, Volvo, Sandvik, Spotify and Ericsson are just a few of the famous companies that call Sweden home.

The Swedish Classroom at UW-Madison

Swedish courses place an emphasis on communicative abilities such as speaking, reading, listening, and writing. Swedish is linguistically related to English –some of the grammar and many words are immediately recognizable. You will gain a mastery of all the basic grammar in less than one year! It will also help you understand other Scandinavian languages as well, such as Norwegian and Danish.  UW-Madison offers small and intimate classes taught by instructors in a relaxed learning environment and our students reach a high conversational and reading ability within the first 2 semesters.  There is an extensive use of new technology in the interactive classroom: Internet, video, language labs, music, etc.  Students who have previously studied the language and/or spent time in the country can test into higher levels of language instruction and/or receive retroactive credits.

Each Fall Semester we have First, Third and Fifth Semester Swedish and every Spring Semester we offer Second and Fourth Year Swedish.  To strengthen and deepen your learning experience we also recommend these classes, which are offered on a rotating basis: Scan 276, Scandinavian Life and Civilization; Scan 373, Scandinavian Literature from the Middle Ages to the 1900’s;  Scan 374, Masterpieces of Scandinavian Literature: the 20th Century; Scan 432,  History of Scandinavia since 1815.