To answer the question how long will it take to learn Norwegian, one has to decide how much time and effort one is willing to put in to achieve such endeavor. It will take however long is necessary; but of course times will vary greatly the more or less, one sets time apart to practice several times per week. How long will it take to learn Norwegian will depend on the level of interest a person has in the Norwegian culture. If the goal of learning Norwegian is more of a hobby and less of an obligation, the learning process will take place in a more natural way.
It depends on the measures you take. If you proceed to quickly sign up for a course, such as the one offered in the jurisdiction of the Oslo Municipality, Rosenhoff, you can be on your way to being conversational within a year. Additionally, more options are available if you have a larger budget. For instance the Folkeuniversitetet offers the Norskkuurs throughout Norway, and there is the option to apply for government assistance to help pay for the course. Other upscale learning options include the private institution Alfa Skolen.
The difference between private and public institutions is slight; being that in terms of entrance testing, public institutions will conduct assessments to determine the most appropriate type of course for the student. This is because some language courses are designed for illiterate persons and others are structured for highly educated individuals. Furthermore, there are courses for students who speak certain mother tongues. For instance a student who can speak another Scandinavian language or German, can learn, speak and understand Norwegian faster than someone who is a French speaker. This is because these languages are closer and more similar to Norwegian. Thus, students may be assigned to courses based on the language of origin criteria as well.
Can you learn Norwegian in a year? It is possible. It depends on available resources, level of interest and how crafty you get to incorporate learning Norwegian into your daily routine. It can be as simple as speaking Norwegian at the bakery, the supermarket, the flower shop, the fish handler stand, or at the waffle cart. It is a matter of taking a leap, and speaking. Mistakes will be made, because, there is no learning without making mistakes. Step by step you will find yourself speaking more Norwegian, by overcoming learning curves and making it an enjoyable process. Keep in mind patience is everything. Learning the nuances of the language, such as the specifics of phonetics, such as the way to pronounce the vowel that precedes a consonant, is more of a long term goal. At first stick to the basics, keep it simple and do not be afraid to fail.
Having some background knowledge about historical and societal aspects of Norwegian culture and linguistics offers a good foundation to begin the language learning process. So first things first. There are two official dialects of the Norwegian language: Bokmal and Nynorsk. The first is a spoken dialect with a heavy Danish influence, whereas Nynorsk was first implemented as a written dialect in the early twentieth century and uses forms of Norwegian spoken prior to the Danish occupation. Once these language nuances of the Norwegian language are fully understood, it will be easier to use colloquial language to interact in the Norwegian society.
As a side note, the name of things may change from city to city in Norway. This fact should not discourage you, because Norwegians are for the most part quite patient when you are trying to practice the language. If something is not clear, just ask them to repeat the word you did not understand.
Bokmal is the spoken language you will be taught when you go to the language center. However, it is possible that work correspondence is conducted in Nynorsk, if you work in a Norwegian company. If you must learn Nynorsk, you may have to attend one of the higher end private language centers.
How to learn Norwegian in ten days? More like what are the basics you need to learn to survive in Norway during your first ten days? Yes, we know all people in Norway are fluent in English; however, if you were in a special situation as in, lost in a remote village with older people, at least knowing how to say “I am hungry” can make a huge difference.
It is important to be hands on from the very beginning. Start by making lists of different word categories, such as, greetings, feelings, vocabulary of places, and how to conjugate verbs in the present tense. These keywords will allow you to express where you come from, what you do, and what you need. That is just the first step, and it can take you as long as ten days or longer, again, depending on how dedicated you are.
Besides doing the aforementioned vocabulary homework, and using online resources to practice, and sign up for a language course; practicing with native Norwegian speakers will make all the difference. Avoid speaking English from the start and only speak Norwegian, even if it feels too difficult. Otherwise the temptation to speak English all the time will be too great.
How quickly can you learn Norwegian? That depends on the amount of practice and time invested. In addition to doing the initial self studying and preparation referred to in previous paragraphs, you need to find yourself some Norwegians in the flesh and blood you can practice with, what you have learned on your own. As a foreigner it is important to take the initiative to take the first step and start a conversation. Specially because even though Norwegians are very open, they are sometimes also very shy. So what do you do? There are many options: Join a sports club, go to the local bars and clubs, or find yourself a Norwegian significant other, etc.
Another tip to get you to understand and speak more, is to go to the public libraries and look for comics and children’s books. These are written in a more simple form of the language, which can help you build on your reading skills and improve your confidence. Also, read about things that spark your interest in the target language.
Remember, to learn Norwegian stay social and start those conversations. Practice repeatedly because this will make learning possible. Regardless of your place of origin, you can learn Norwegian.
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