Yippee! Finally I can speak Swedish well enough to get a job
Just wanted to say thanks to all those who helped me learn over the past months. My goal was to gain sufficient Swedish to be able to secure a job.
I have been super inactive on Duolingo the past 3 weeks for the very reason that I was in another town undertaking interviews and on the job training for my first job in Sweden.
I have to say, I have a long, long, long way to go still, but I am really grateful to all who have helped me to achieve this.
Hugs to all.
That’s cool! It’s nice to read success stories instead of only doubts and complaints. With the right motivation, success in language learning is just a matter of time.
How long on duolingo did it take you to become fluent enough? Or did you use something else to learn? And congrats !
Det är troligt att han använde andra grejer för att lära sig svenska. Man kan inte bli flytande med bara Duolingo.
Precis! Men Duolingo ger dig möjlighet att lära dig att läsa, skriva, höra och prata ett språk. Upprepningens aspekt är avgörande för att lära sig ett språk.
Bara att lyssna på ett språk det är inte så enkelt att lära sig. Att lära sig att tala ett språk och förstå det när det talas till dig, måste man träna alla fyra aspekter innan man kan engagera sig med människor.
Grammatik måste komma naturligt. Så Duolingo tillåter dig att upprepa, upprepa, upprepa.
Jag håller med om det. Men det är ett bra verktyg för att komma igång. PomLearnin did get really far (not only with DL, but it was in there. The whole process counts) :)
Det är troligt att han använde andra grejer
Emmeline, why do you call her "han"? Just a typo?
Ehm, she might have made a mistake. Believe me Sir, her Swedish is too good to be mistaking that kind of stuff :)
Although, good job, I didn't notice that before you mentioned that :)
Thank you so much. I lived in Sweden with English speaking family for a year and then spent 2 months in London with my daughter. Before that time I used almost entirely Google Translate which of course got me into deep water with translating job applications and personal letters :o)
So my course to speaking Swedish has spanned 18 months, but has only been a concerted effort for the past 6 months.
I decided to return to Sweden in November last year and so began an intensive journey with Duolingo. I attempted to hit between 3-5 hours a day on some form of Swedish studying - most of that was Duolingo. I attempted to hit 200 points a day, often falling short but sometimes hitting 300+ a day.
I did attempt to read a novel - very slow going and I would have done better to have selected a Swedish author as opposed to try to translate books in Swedish which were originally written in English or Danish :o)
I also try to listen to some form of spoken Swedish for about 40 minutes a day - Sveriges Radio för Lätt Svenska helps to get you going with actually 'hearing' the Swedish words being spoken. Also TV News and some series or documentaries. I tried to read the subtitles in Swedish of all English programmes - that helps me to speed up my ability to read Swedish.
I try to type out and write out as much Swedish as I can so that I practice using a keyboard and putting my thoughts into writing.
I stayed with a friend for a month to try to remove myself from my English home context and force myself to hear, think and speak in Swedish - I was rather unsuccessful and resolved to work even harder and study a grammar book and learn more vocabulary that I would use in everyday conversation with people.
I relied heavily on Google translate to translate sentences I wanted to say and put them in an Excel spreadsheet so that I can go through them from time to time. This was a very productive exercise but is very time consuming as you need to 'reverse translate' everything and sometimes change your choice of words quite considerably before what you wanted to say makes sense in Swedish :o)
So all told, 6 months of consistent hard work and a range of personally enforced approaches. In the end I was lucky to have a Swedish friend who was so happy to help and support me and who was prepared to encourage her work colleagues to have me on board. To get work in Sweden your 'network' can be really important.
6 months is not nearly enough to learn a language, but my dilemma was 'when is it enough' to even go for an interview and try to start a working life?
I was not 'ready', but I had to jump at the opportunity created for me. I wrote out Swedish responses to a range of typical questions I may be asked and rewrote them in slightly different answers or sentences. In that way I learned the vocabulary and grammar so that I could try to speak more naturally in an interview.
I am sure I was quite unsuccessful in that too as questions that strayed from my prepared dialogue I really struggled to come up with answers on the spot.
However, when is it enough.....? When you are given the opportunity, I guess.
I gave up on the idea of doing something back in my field of expertise which requires me to sit in business meetings with captains of industry, financial and marketing directors and present statistics and strategy, work with other teams of skillsets and interpret what I needed to develop from all of that input. Develop, write and present media strategies and consumer insights - all in Swedish.
I am so far off of that goal, I have given up on pursuing it. But one can always make a life change and do something else rewarding and where the demand on being 'that' fluent in Swedish is not an overwhelming pressure.
Kanske inte. Jag ändrade mina förväntningar på att fortsätta min karriär i reklam i Sverige. Jag insåg att det skulle bli många år innan jag var tillräckligt flytande på svenska för att arbeta i en affärssammanhang.
Så min nivå av talad svenska är fortfarande mycket enkel och jag förstår bara ca 65% av det jag hör. Resten antar jag.
Tack för önskningarna. Jag måste fortsätta arbeta med det.
What wonderful news!!! Huge congratulations on your language learning, on your bravery in chasing your dream, and most of all, on your new job in SWEDEN!!! You are a rock star, and I wish you only the best in this great new chapter of your life!
Thank you so much. I am very envious of your long list of various languages you are learning. Very humbling.
I need to stick with Swedish for now and improve, improve some more.
That's fantastisk. Congrats! I do legal work and it's my dream to know enough to work on a Swedish language doc review. Still working on it.
Thanks. That is a high goal indeed.
I decided it was going to take so long for me to learn sufficient 'business' Swedish to be able to resume my carrier in Sweden, I decided to just change direction entirely so that I could work doing something with a much more conversational level requirement.
It's all just time and consistency. But I think creating opportunities for variety and to do things you enjoy in the language is also very key to being motivated to expend the energy.
Thanks for the wishes. I gave a bit of a long monologue to Keziah4295 above, so I don't want to bore everyone with repeating it.
Basically I tried to wing it for a year - unsuccessfully - before deciding to get more serious. About 6 months of targeting around 200+ Duolingo points a day, but also attempting to read, hear, learn from another Grammar textbook, use Google Translate to work out a version of what I wanted to say and try to learn those 'typical' sentences' that popped up everyday conversation.
I would say I have only just begun to understand what I am hearing - only about 65% I would say. So I am trying to immerse myself more in 'listening' to spoken Swedish (living with a friend, listening to Swedish TV News and programmes).
I found Duolingo a great platform to practice what I see as 4 very important key skills - read, write, hear, speak. Individual media and social contexts focus on roughly 2 of those skills at a time, but you need the grammar you see in reading and writing a language to 'hear' and speak it at even a basic level. I really struggle to 'hear' the words and get the meaning when listening to different Swedish speakers - regional dialects play their part too.
Duolingo's opportunity to just keep repeating things I found invaluable in not only 'learning' a language, but practicing the sounds, the way your mouth moves from one word to another which is totally different from English (my mother tongue) and repeating 'building blocks' in the grammar of the language until certain things become natural (en and ett words, the verbs relating to them, etc.)
I found 'fishing' for grammar and the correct word endings a real stumbling block where I would just sit there in silence with my mind blank struggling to say anything at all.
So even though I am happy at my progress, I have a very long way to go to being fluent in Swedish. I would say this process is a life journey and it will never end. I just look forward to the day when I can be more expressive and more natural in conversations socially and in a work context.
I have been looking for inspirational and worth-reading posts the past few weeks, and this is exactly what I needed. Would you mind sharing any tips with a fellow learner? :)
I wish you the best of luck!
I think with your spread of languages that you have many tips to pass on too. But one I think is worthwhile....
I came across a YouTube video on learning languages which strongly advocated that humans learn best through engaging their emotions.
Make what you learn meaningful and relevant. Find someone you can practice with - active communication is key. https://youtu.be/JMcvKWppPpM
We learn language at an early age by really wanting or feeling or experiencing something. His advice was not to simply repeat and practice in order to try to ram a language into your head by sheer force of will, but to find ways to embed vocabulary and the way a language is used by infusing it with emotion or a personal experience.
Lucky I am a very imaginative person, so whenever I read a sentence in Duolingo or elsewhere I literally embed a funny or emotive picture or feeling in my mind to represent each one.
Movies and songs may well help for exactly that reason - they engage multiple senses (vision, sound - and with sub-titles - reading simultaneously). I am a great advocate in the power of sound, but a language is also about getting your mouth to move in the correct way and at speed, so songs that are fun or emotive+audio help with that.
Try to find videos where you can copy the face of people when they speak. Monkey see, monkey do. Do what they do with their lips, tongue and face.
That may help with vocabulary, but grammar I think is just sheer hard work, exposure to the language being spoken and repetition.
Hope this helps. There are many folks on the discussion groups that have given excellent advice and shared what they have done to learn. Lots of good advice out there. I chose what I have said above as I think that may add something slightly different.
Thanks a lot! I think you are the only person in Duolingo who can make long comments readable.
Thank you for giving me the motivation. I'm studying swedish to study in Uppsala this winter and I can't speak yet, just read. Glad my degree is taught in english, but still...if you want to live there, you have to learn the language!
*Grattis (Gratis means 'free')
I've studied in Uppsala too, it's a great student city! I'm sure you'll love it there, especially if you're interested in the whole Swedish student movement. Uppsala is one of the major cities when it comes to student living. It even has its own Wikipedia post (though, it's only good in Swedish) - Here
Tacka! Som studentstad tror jag att du kommer att ha kul i Uppsala. Alla talar engelska men om du vill göra vänner, talar svenska är viktig.
Lycka till med dina studier!
Do you like Nordic noir, Swedish crime fiction or dramas? Perhaps you can moonlight as an English translator for them; the somewhat bare-bones style of storytelling might be something you can worth with.
That sounds very interesting. Do you know of anyone I can speak to? I would love that! Love the crime genre.
Congrats! I hope you get the job you were hoping for! Sounds like fun to actually learn a new language and get to go someplace and test yourself on what you know. Have fun at your job!
Thanks for the wishes.
I didn't get the job I was hoping for (which was to continue my career in marketing and advertising). The level of fluency required for that is a couple of bars above that I can manage quite frankly.
It took me a while to realise that and then when I did I refocused completely. I realised that I love living in the North of Sweden (my family are in Örnsköldsvik - a rather small town on the Höga Kusten) and I finally found work 100 kms away in Umeå (a university town in the North). So I commute every other week or so between the towns - it's just an hour by train.
If you love nature it is heaven here and really A LOT cheaper in terms of living expenses.
So I earn a bit less than working in Stockholm, I have absolutely no stress in my work environment (nowhere near like the advertising world), I can get by with a lower level of Swedish competency, I can be within a short train ride of family and probably come out on the same money with the considerably lower apartment rentals here.
My younger daughter may join me to study at Umeå from August 2020, so that would all align nicely.
My sort of "plan B" in life is to move to Sweden once and work there too. I already have lots of good friends there, so I would definitely have a social network to start off with. But for years we always spoke English to each other, since we all speak it. I have to stop being lazy and talk to them in Swedish only to make that plan B at least reasonable. ;)
I am a teacher btw, so my job involves a lot of talking. Doesn't make the whole plan easier, haha!
It is difficult to get into the education system if you don't speak Swedish. You can try one of the British International Schools or Internationella Engelska Skolan.
Perhaps see if you can start out in an English speaking school and then when you have learnt sufficient Swedish you may want to move into a Swedish school environment.
I could not find work in örnsköldsvik where my brother lives in marketing / advertising (the field I have experience in), so I've done an about turn and (with help of a friend) found a summer job in 'omsorg'.
New phase of life, new challenge, right? I am looking for permanent work for after my semestervikarier contract comes to an end, so from 7 October. As my family live in ö-vik I can also look in Sundsvall. Currently I am living with a friend and working in Umeå.
Thanks for the wishes and interest. :oD