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am 19. Mai 2000
After deciding I wanted to learn Swedish and not having thepatience to wait until a new semester started at one of the localuniversity extension programs, I decided to try this book, since it seemed to be one of the more highly recommended ones on Perhaps if you have more perseverance or a higher pain threshhold than I do, it might be worthwhile for you. I've always thought of myself as a pretty good student of language: I never had much trouble learning Spanish, French, of Japanese. But this book makes things hard.
It starts with a quick overview of Swedish pronunciation but then throws the reader in head first. And considering that the tape only covers a portion of the written text, I found myself forced to guess how words were pronounced. I mean, is "lakare" (doctor) pronounced as "luh-kah-ray" or "la-care". Maybe it's obvious to someone who knows Swedish but as a complete beginner I had no idea.
It was also tedious reading because I had to continually flip back to the pronunciation guide to figure out how to pronounce things. It would have been nice if a phonetic spellings (along with accent and tone indications) had been included, at least in the early chapters.
The short quizzes are often inscrutable. One of the first true or false questions uses vocabulary and grammar that haven't even been introduced yet, forcing the reader to guess what the answer is. A short time later the reader is shown a picture of a smiling man in a kilt and asked what his profession is. Apparently the smile is supposed to hint to you that he is in a dentist.
I don't think it is impossible to learn languages from books, although it is certainly harder than with a live instructor. There are good language books out there. Unfortunately, I don't think this is one of them. Also unfortunately, there don't seem to be a lot of alternatives for learning Swedish.
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am 24. Juni 1999
If you are searching for a beginner-level book in order to learn enough Swedish to enjoy visiting the country, don't waste your money on this book and tape like I did!!
Although the audio tape included with this book is a good way to get a feel for how Swedish sounds, it is definitely not at a beginner level. The book does not have enough detailed information for someone who has no prior background in a Scandanavian language to be able to learn this language without lots of extra help (and having learned Spanish and Japanese previously, I found them both MUCH easier to learn than this book made learning Swedish).
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am 5. Juni 1997
So, ya wanna learn Swedish? Then thank your stars for Vera Crogan's "Swedish: A Complete Course for Beginners". This book is custom-made for people just like yourself who have always wanted to learn Swedish, but never quite found the appropriate study guide to use.

The book contains 18 lessons, each broken up into 8 parts: a dialogue, the vocabulary to the dialogue, a true or false test, things you need to know about grammar and culture, important words and expressions, language patterns, exercises, and further dialogues testing your comprehension.

The book is very easy to get through. You can go at your own pace, and you can also use the book as a grammar reference once you've advanced to a higher level. With this book, you're bound to advance quickly if you're serious about learning Swedish!
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am 25. Mai 2000
I also loved the book and cassette course (you should certainly not buy the book without buying the cassette also, or you'll have trouble). I've checked out any and every kind of language tape course, as I like to learn a bit of the language before I travel somewhere. It does "throw you into it" a bit, and starts you off with some full-fledged dialogues instead of with single words, but I prefer that approach. If you roll with it, it actually advances you much more quickly than the old, "Balloon--Ballon. Balloon--Ballon." rote learning, repetitive tapes. Very pleasantly surprised.
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am 12. Februar 2000
I want to disagree with some other reviewers about this course. It's in the standard teach yourself format. It's really well written and interesting though perhaps not the best if you've never studied a language before because it goes from simple to intermediate in the course of the book. It's certainly more accessible than the Colloquial course which gets quite academic. Some of the stuff is only relevant to English people and there is annoying blank space on the tapes that could have
been used for some of the dialogues but otherwise I thought this was excellent value for money.
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am 12. Januar 2000
The Teach Yourself series is officially recognized by the University of Virginia's Department of Germanic Languages. I used this course successfully to learn Swedish and am planning a trip to Sweden so that I can show off my language ability. This course can be difficult for beginners, but patience and perserverance pay off in the long run. The Teach Yourself Danish and German courses are also excellent.
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