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How Long Will it Take to Learn Swedish?

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Learning to understand, speak, and think in a different language is an amazing and fulfilling process. When we learn a foreign language, not only do we add a new skill to our repertoire, but we also change the very way we see and think about the world and our relationship to it. 

If you’re considering taking up Swedish, you’ve likely asked these questions at some point: How long will it take to learn Swedish? And is it worth the commitment?

We’ll get to the first question in a bit. As for the second question: Absolutely! 

Did you know, for example, that if you learn Swedish you’ll also be able to understand Norwegian and Danish? This will open up the whole Scandinavian world to you! Three languages for the price of one! 

Language lovers would all like to spend endless days learning Swedish and all its nuances… But, nowadays, time is money and the reality of our world can be quite different.

An Hourglass Against a Dark Background

We all instinctively look for the fastest and easiest ways to learn, so that we can start practicing and using our new skills early on to find a better job, travel, or communicate with a friend or loved one.  

It would be great if we could know, right from the start, exactly how long it takes to learn a language. This way, we would be able to make long-term plans and know what to expect. However, the reality is that there isn’t one best way to learn and there’s certainly no set timetable for learning Swedish! 

Everyone learns according to their experience, time, and motivation. How quickly you learn will depend on many other factors, too. 

Let’s have a look at these factors and discuss how to take advantage of this knowledge to start learning as fast as possible.

Log in to Download Your Free Cheat Sheet - Beginner Vocabulary in Swedish Table of Contents
  1. Experience
  2. Learning Style
  3. Approach
  4. How Long Does it Take to Achieve Beginner/Intermediate/Advanced Level?
  5. How Our Website Can Help

Experience

One of the most important things to take into consideration is your general experience with languages. 

The Language(s) You Speak

What’s your native language? And what other languages do you know? 

Yes, this will actually be a defining aspect of how quickly you’ll be able to pick up Swedish. 

If you’re a native or near-native English speaker, you’re in luck! Swedish and English actually share the same roots, and their grammar and sentence structure are pretty similar! It gets even better if you already speak Dutch, German, and obviously, Danish or Norwegian. 

If you’re a native speaker of a Semitic language such as Arabic, on the other hand, it might be a little trickier—but all the more challenging and rewarding! So, don’t be discouraged. Just be aware that your native English friends might just have a bit of a headstart…it doesn’t mean they’ll learn it better than you! 

Your Previous Language Learning Experience

Another essential aspect to consider is your previous experience in the field of language learning

Have you ever learned a foreign language before?

If you already speak a foreign language fluently, or were brought up bilingual, you’ll likely be able to learn Swedish faster than other people. Many studies and research have now proven that bilingual people find it easier to study and learn a third language, as they’re naturally more accustomed to being exposed to different languages. 

Even if you’re not bilingual, having studied and learned a foreign language at any point in your life will probably help. This is because your language-learning mind is already used to memorizing words and rules, as well as looking at different letters and symbols—a definite advantage!

Basically, having skills in one language will help you gain fluency in another language (even if the two languages are totally different)!

Your Previous Grammar Knowledge

One of the first steps to take when you’re learning a foreign language is to discover and study how it’s built and how it works. This usually means learning and understanding its structure and grammar. 

If you have some previous experience studying grammar and syntax, even if only in your own language, it will be much easier and faster for you to study the syntax and grammar of a foreign language. 

So, if you’re planning to start learning Swedish, it’s a good idea to have some grammar foundations to build your knowledge on! 

Learning Style

The way you study and learn is another essential factor in how long it takes to learn Swedish.

A Man Who Aced His Essay

Your Methods

If you limit your learning to a classroom setting, it will surely take you a little longer to learn and start using your language skills with confidence in the real world. Here’s how to learn the Swedish language faster: Expose yourself to Swedish outside the classroom! This will shave quite a few hours off your required learning time.

Pick up the habit of reading Swedish newspapers, watching films and series in Swedish, and listening to Swedish podcasts while you drive or cook. It will help. Of course, finding a conversation partner to practice with will also go a long way toward achieving fluency faster.

Your Time

There’s another aspect we haven’t mentioned yet, even though it’s actually the most important determining factor in how long it takes to learn Swedish: The time you put into it!

If you want to learn quickly, you should dedicate as much time to studying as you possibly can. 

Ideally, you’ll want to practice daily. Research has shown that students who dedicate at least an hour a day to language learning—whether studying grammar, memorizing words, watching a series, or reading a book—end up learning significantly faster than those who don’t stick to a daily schedule.

And if it’s an option for you, full-immersion learning is the best method. If you can travel to Sweden and live there for a short (or long) while, that will change everything!

Approach

Learning to speak Swedish will be a much easier, more fluid process if you take the right approach. Here’s what I mean…

Your Motivation

It’s no secret: Staying motivated is an essential aspect of learning a new language. What are your reasons for learning Swedish?

Have these reasons clear in your mind, and set weekly (or even daily) goals for maximum efficiency. Keeping your reasons in mind will help you stay motivated and interested in learning this beautiful language every day! 

Your Attitude

Keeping your spirits and motivation up will make your language learning more effective, and it will help you get through the tough times with a positive attitude

The secret is to see studying as a fun and interesting activity…something you’re choosing to do, rather than something you’re forced to do. 

A Woman Lifting Her Arms in Joy

Remember: Knowing a foreign language will open your mind and your horizons, and it will give you a great set of skills to use in your daily and professional life. 

When you think about it this way, you’ll always be motivated to learn something new every day. This will make the process not only more enjoyable, but also much faster! 

How Long Does it Take to Achieve Beginner/Intermediate/Advanced Level?

So, let’s get to the point. 

How long does it take an English speaker to learn Swedish?

Following is a quick guide on how long it might take to reach a beginner, intermediate, and advanced level of Swedish. Keep in mind that these numbers are just estimates, and exact times will vary based on the factors we described above. 

Beginner

As a Swedish beginner, you’ll be able to introduce yourself, understand slow spoken language, and ask basic questions (probably making some mistakes along the way). 

If your goal is to be able to greet people, order a meal at the restaurant, have some basic reading skills, and understand sentences pronounced slowly and carefully, this level is probably sufficient.

You’ll be able to do all these things with just about 180-200 hours of Swedish classes (to reach levels B1-B2). This means that if you’re motivated and willing to put in 10-15 hours a week, you could travel to Sweden without any worries in just over 3 months.

So get studying and you’ll soon be having some basic conversations!

The City of Gotland in Sweden

Intermediate

Once you reach an intermediate level, you’ll be able to understand everyday conversations (when spoken clearly), even if you have to ask some questions to keep up. This level will also allow you to read and watch the news and other videos with few problems. If you’re traveling, you’ll be able to ask for and follow directions with no problem and you’ll also be able to enjoy basic interactions with locals about familiar subjects. 

We estimate that, to achieve an intermediate level of Swedish, you’ll need about 350 hours of study. This means that, if you dedicate around 15 hours a week to practicing your Swedish, you’ll be able to get to this level in just 6 months! 

Advanced

If you’re setting out to achieve fluency, this is what you’re aiming for. Once you have advanced language skills, you’ll be able to deal with any kind of situation that may arise in your daily life abroad or while traveling. You should also be able to have long and detailed conversations with native speakers. You’ll be able to enjoy watching movies and reading books in Swedish with no problem. 

In other words, you’ll be fluent. (Even if there’s always something new to learn about this intricate and beautifully complex language!)

A Woman Reading a Book Outside

According to the U.S. Foreign Service Institute (FSI), you’ll need about 750 hours of study to become fluent in Swedish. This means that if you dedicate 12-15 hours a week to studying, you’ll be able to speak like a pro in just a year! 

If this seems like a long time, take into account that harder languages like Japanese or Arabic may take up to 2200 hours—three times as long as Swedish! 

How Our Website Can Help

So, what are you waiting for? The perfect time to start learning a foreign language is now! 

The sooner you start learning, the faster you’ll achieve your language goals and start speaking Swedish.

If you want to keep motivated and make your language learning adventure as easy as possible, check out the content on SwedishPod101.com. Here, you’ll find all kinds of language learning materials: vocabulary lists, lessons for all levels, dictionaries, blog posts, and more.

As we explained, how long it takes to learn Swedish really just depends on how much time you’re willing to invest in learning. Our online Swedish courses and resources are designed specifically to give you all the right tools to learn the language as quickly and easily as possible. Make sure that your precious time is well-spent!

Whether you’re a beginner learner who wants a survival course or an advanced speaker who’s looking to refine your skills, you’ll find what you’re looking for here.

Before you go, we’re curious: How likely are you to start learning Swedish after reading this article? Feel free to let us know if you have any questions or concerns—we’ll be glad to help you out the best we can!

Log in to Download Your Free Cheat Sheet - Beginner Vocabulary in Swedish

Swedish Keyboard: How to Install and Type in Swedish

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You asked, so we provided—easy-to-follow instructions on how to set up your electronic devices to write in Swedish! We’ll also give you a few excellent tips on how to use this keyboard, as well as some online and app alternatives if you prefer not to set up a Swedish keyboard.

Log in to Download Your Free Swedish Alphabet Worksheet Table of Contents
  1. Why it’s Important to Learn to Type in Swedish
  2. Setting up Your Computer and Mobile Devices for Swedish
  3. How to Activate an Onscreen Keyboard on Your Computer
  4. How to Change the Language Settings to Swedish on Your Computer
  5. Activating the Swedish Keyboard on Your Mobile Phone and Tablet
  6. Swedish Keyboard Typing Tips
  7. How to Practice Typing Swedish

1. Why it’s Important to Learn to Type in Swedish

A keyboard

Learning a new language is made so much easier when you’re able to read and write/type it. This way, you will:

  • Get the most out of any dictionary and Swedish language apps on your devices
  • Expand your ability to find Swedish websites and use the various search engines
  • Be able to communicate much better online with your Swedish teachers and friends, and look super cool in the process! 

2. Setting up Your Computer and Mobile Devices for Swedish

A phone charging on a dock

It takes only a few steps to set up any of your devices to read and type in Swedish. It’s super-easy on your mobile phone and tablet, and a simple process on your computer.

On your computer, you’ll first activate the onscreen keyboard to work with. You’ll only be using your mouse or touchpad/pointer for this keyboard. Then, you’ll need to change the language setting to Swedish, so all text will appear in Swedish. You could also opt to use online keyboards instead. Read on for the links!

On your mobile devices, it’s even easier—you only have to change the keyboard. We also provide a few alternatives in the form of online keyboards and downloadable apps.

3. How to Activate an Onscreen Keyboard on Your Computer

1- Mac

1. Go to System Preferences > Keyboard.

2. Check the option “Show Keyboard & Character Viewers in Menu Bar.”

3. You’ll see a new icon on the right side of the main bar; click on it and select “Show Keyboard Viewer.”

A screenshot of the keyboard viewer screen

2- Windows

1. Go to Start > Settings > Easy Access > Keyboard.

2. Turn on the option for “Onscreen Keyboard.”

3- Online Keyboards

If you don’t want to activate your computer’s onscreen keyboard, you also have the option to use online keyboards. Here are some good options:

4- Add-ons of Extensions for Browsers

Instead of an online keyboard, you could also choose to download a Google extension to your browser for a language input tool. The Google Input Tools extension allows users to use input tools in Chrome web pages, for example.

4. How to Change the Language Settings to Swedish on Your Computer

Man looking at his computer

Now that you’re all set to work with an onscreen keyboard on your computer, it’s time to download the Swedish language pack for your operating system of choice:

  • Windows 8 (and higher)
  • Windows 7
  • Mac (OS X and higher)

1- Windows 8 (and higher)

  1. Go to “Settings” > “Change PC Settings” > “Time & Language” > “Region & Language.”
  2. Click on “Add a Language” and select “Swedish.” This will add it to your list of languages. It will appear as svenska with the note “language pack available.”
  3. Click on “svenska” > “Options” > “Download.” It’ll take a few minutes to download and install the language pack.
  4. As a keyboard layout, you’ll only need the one marked as “Swedish – svenska.” You can ignore other keyboard layouts.

2- Windows 7

1. Go to Start > Control Panel > Clock, Language, and Region.

2. On the “Region and Language” option, click on “Change Keyboards or Other Input Methods.”

3. On the “Keyboards and Languages” tab, click on “Change Keyboards” > “Add” > “Swedish.”

4. Expand the option of “Swedish” and then expand the option “Keyboard.” Select the keyboard layout marked as “Swedish.” You can ignore other keyboard layouts. Click “OK” and then “Apply.”

3- Mac (OS X and higher)

If you can’t see the language listed, please make sure to select the right option from System Preferences > Language and Region

1. From the Apple Menu (top left corner of the screen) go to System Preferences > Keyboard.

2. Click the Input Sources tab and a list of available keyboards and input methods will appear.

3. Click on the plus button, select “Swedish,” and add the “Swedish” keyboard.

Adding a system language

5. Activating the Swedish Keyboard on Your Mobile Phone and Tablet

Texting and searching in Swedish will greatly help you master the language! Adding a Swedish keyboard on your mobile phone and/or tablet is super-easy.

You could also opt to download an app instead of adding a keyboard. Read on for our suggestions.

Below are the instructions for both iOS and Android mobile phones and tablets.

1- iOS

1. Go to Settings > General > Keyboard.

2. Tap “Keyboards” and then “Add New Keyboard.”

3. Select “Swedish” from the list.

4. When typing, you can switch between languages by tapping and holding on the icon to reveal the keyboard language menu.

2- Android

1. Go to Settings > General Management > Language and Input > On-screen Keyboard (or “Virtual Keyboard” on some devices) > Samsung Keyboard.

2. Tap “Language and Types” or “ + Select Input Languages” depending on the device and then “MANAGE INPUT LANGUAGES” if available.

3. Select “svenska” from the list.

4. When typing, you can switch between languages by swiping the space bar.

3- Applications for Mobile Phones

If you don’t want to add a keyboard on your mobile phone or tablet, this is a good app to consider:

6. Swedish Keyboard Typing Tips

Typing in Swedish can be very challenging at first! Here’s a good tip to keep in mind when typing in Swedish:

  • The key for “å” is usually on the right of the P key, “ö” on the right of the L key, and “ä” is on the right of the “ö” key. 
A man typing on a computer

7. How to Practice Typing Swedish

As you probably know by now, learning Swedish is all about practice, practice, and more practice! Strengthen your Swedish typing skills by writing comments on any of our lesson pages, and our teacher will answer. If you’re a SwedishPod101 Premium PLUS member, you can directly text our teacher via the My Teacher app—use your Swedish keyboard to do this!

Log in to Download Your Free Swedish Alphabet Worksheet

Learn How to Talk About Your Family in Swedish

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Did you know that only some reptiles and birds don’t parent their offspring? Except for crocodiles, all reptiles (and one family of bird species called megapodes) hatch from eggs and grow up alone, without any family.

The rest of us need family if we are to survive and thrive – humans and animals alike!

At SwedishPod101, we know how important family is. Therefore, we take care to teach you all the important vocabulary and phrases pertaining to family.

Table of Contents

  1. Why Is It Important to Know Swedish Vocabulary about Family?
  2. Learn a New Culture? Learn its Family Vocab first
  3. How SwedishPod101 Can Help You Learn Swedish Family Terms

Log in to Download Your Free Cheat Sheet - Family Phrases in Swedish

1. Why Is It Important to Know Swedish Vocabulary about Family?

Lioness with Cub

Well, if you’re serious about studying any new language, then learning about the most important social unit in Swedish culture would be a crucial part of your education.

What is family, though? Strictly speaking, it’s a group of people who live together and are supposed to take care of one another. Some of them are genetically linked.

Family isn’t just about who we’re related to by blood, of course. It’s also one of the main influences in shaping every child’s life.

Family is Important for Children’s Healthy Development

Phrases Parents Say

Family is the single most important influence in a child’s life. Children depend on parents and family to protect them and provide for their needs from the day they were born.

Primary caregivers, which usually comprise parents and family, form a child’s first relationships. They are a child’s first teachers and are role models that show kids how to act and experience the world around them.

By nurturing and teaching children during their early years, families play an important role in making sure children are ready to learn when they enter school.

Families Can Take All Shapes and Sizes

However, the way families are put together is by no means standard.

Mom and Daughter

Single-parent and same-gender households have become a new norm the past few decades, and there’s no shame in this. When there is love, connection and proper care, a child can thrive anywhere.

Everyone also knows that sometimes friends can become like family and remain with us for life, because it’s all about human connection.

After all, we share many commonalities simply because we’re human, and we are programmed to connect with one another and belong to a group. This is very important for our well-being and survival.

It’s All About Feeling Connected

As John Northman, a psychologist from Buffalo, NY, told WebMD – feeling connected to others contributes to mental as well as physical health.

He pointed out that when people feel connected, they feel better physically, and they’re also less likely to feel depressed.

Couples Chatting

Or, if they do feel depressed, they’d be in a better position to get out of it when they feel they are connecting with others. This is because they would be psychologically supported too, Northman said.

There has even been some links drawn between addiction and feeling disconnected from others. According to an article in Psychology Today, research indicates that addiction is not solely a substance disorder, but also affected by people feeling insecurely attached to others.

It showed that securely attached individuals tend to feel comfortable in and enjoy life, while insecurely attached people typically struggle to fit in and connect.

2. Learn a New Culture? Learn its Family Vocab first

So, it’s clear that for most of us, family is our entry point into connection and belonging. This is true of every culture, so in every country, family takes prominence.

For this reason, SwedishPod101 offers culturally-relevant lessons that will equip you well to understand families in Sweden.

Here are some of the most important Swedish vocabulary and quotes about family and parenting!

A) Swedish Family Vocabulary

Let’s start with the basic vocabulary. Without this collection of words, you’ll have a hard time describing any member of your family at all.

Family Terms
Family
släkt
Great grandfather
gammelfarfar or gammelmorfar
Mother
mamma
Grandmother
mormor (mother’s mother), farmor (father’s mother)
Father
pappa
Grandfather
morfar (mother’s father), farfar (father’s father)
Wife
fru
Grandchild
barnbarn
Husband
make
Granddaughter
barnbarn
Parent
förälder
Grandson
barnbarn
Child
barn
Aunt
faster (father’s sister) or moster (mother’s sister)
Daughter
dotter
Uncle
farbror (father’s brother) or morbror (mother’s brother)
Sister
syster
Niece
systerdotter
Brother
bror
Nephew
brorson
Younger sister
lillasyster
Younger brother
lillebror
Older brother
storebror
Great grandmother
gammelfarmor or gammelmormor
Cousin
kusin
Mother-in-law
svärmor
Father-in-law
svärfar
Sister-in-law
svärsyster
Brother-in-law
svåger
Partner
partner

Family of Three

B) Quotes About Family

Swedish Family Quotes

One of the ways to improve your Swedish language skills is by memorizing quotes from books, or poems.

Either source some from Swedish literature, or make use of ours!

Du väljer inte din familj. De är Guds gåva till dig, liksom du är till dem.

“You don’t choose your family. They are God’s gift to you, as you are to them.” – Desmond Tutu

Familjen är inte en viktig sak. Den är allt.

“Family is not an important thing. It’s everything.” – Michael J. Fox

Familj betyder att ingen blir kvar eller glömd.

“Family means no one gets left behind or forgotten.” – David Ogden Stiers

Min familj är min styrka och min svaghet.

“My family is my strength and my weakness.” – Aishwarya Rai

Familjen är ett av naturens mästerverk.

“The family is one of nature’s masterpieces.” – George Santayana

När problem kommer, är det din familj som stödjer dig.

“When trouble comes, it’s your family that supports you.” – Guy Lafleur

Familjen är den första grundläggande cellen av det mänskliga samhället.

“The family is the first essential cell of human society.” – Pope John XXIII

Det finns inget sådant som är kul för hela familjen.

“There is no such thing as fun for the whole family.” – Jerry Seinfeld

Du måste försvara din ära. Och din familj.

“You have to defend your honor. And your family.” – Suzanne Vega

Alla lyckliga familjer är likadana; varje olycklig familj är olycklig på sitt eget sätt.

“All happy families are alike; each unhappy family is unhappy in its own way.” – Leo Tolstoy

C) Test Your Knowledge!

Do you feel you have learned a lot in this blog? Let’s quickly test that!

In the table below, match the Swedish vocabulary on the left with the definition of the relative in the right column.

MY RELATIVES
Relative Name Definition
1. släkt a. My male child
2. mamma b. My older male sibling
3. pappa c. My female sibling
4. fru d. My child’s child
5. make e. My child’s female child
6. förälder f. My female parent
7. barn g. My grandparent’s mother
8. dotter h. Mother to one of my parents
9. son i. Relatives
10. syster j. My female child
11. bror k. My younger male sibling
12. lillasyster l. Male spouse
13. lillebror m. The father of one of my parents
14. storebror n. My child’s male child
15. gammelfarmor or gammelmormor o. My children’s father or mother
16. gammelfarfar or gammelmorfar p. The sister of one of my parents
17. mormor or farmor q. The brother of one of my parents
18. farfar or morfar r. My male parent
19. barnbarn s. My sibling’s female child
20. barnbarn t. My sibling’s male child
21. barnbarn u. My male sibling
22. faster or moster v. My parents’ sibling’s child
23. farbror or morbror w. Female spouse
24. systerdotter x. The grandfather of one of my parents
25. brorson y. The person I am a parent to
26. kusin z. My younger female sibling

How did it go? Don’t worry if you had trouble with it – you’ll get there! With a bit of practice, and our help at SwedishPod101, you’ll soon have these family terms under the belt.

Family Shopping

3. How SwedishPod101 Can Help You Learn Swedish Family Terms

We hope that we helped you expand your family in Swedish vocabulary!

SwedishPod101, with its innovative online learning system, stands out among online learning platforms to help you master Swedish easily.

Our lessons are tailored not only to increase your language skills, but to also inform you of Swedish culture, including the Swedish family structure.

When you sign up, you will get instant access to tools like:

1 – An extensive vocabulary list, regularly updated
2 – A new Swedish word to learn every day
3 – Quick access to the Swedish Key Phrase List
4 – A free Swedish online dictionary
5 – The excellent 100 Core Swedish Word List
6 – An almost limitless Lesson Library for learners of all levels

Further speed up your learning with the help of a personal tutor, who will first assess your current Swedish language abilities to personalize your training and tailor it to your needs.

Hard work always pays off, and to help you in this, SwedishPod101 will be there every step of the way toward your Swedish mastery!

Log in to Download Your Free Cheat Sheet - Family Phrases in Swedish

Answers: 1.i. 2.f. 3.r. 4.w. 5.l. 6.o. 7.y. 8.j. 9.a. 10.c. 11.u. 12.z. 13.k. 14.b. 15.g 16.x. 17.h. 18.m. 19.d. 20.e. 21.n. 22.p. 23.q. 24.s. 25.t. 26.v.