[Course Forum] Comprehensive Swedish

Current Status

An Overview

As mentioned in a comment I posted on the thread for my Duolingo-Swedish course, I’m working on a new Swedish course.

The preliminary name is “Comprehensive Swedish” as this course will be far more comprehensive than any Duolingo tree is (or ever will be) but the name may change. It will also be aimed more at intermediate-advanced speakers, at least later on in the course (whereas Duolingo is aimed at beginner-intermediate speakers).

I believe that there are a lot of things that will set this course apart from the majority of courses (on Memrise at least), primarily:

  • Grammar and grammar-related terminology will NOT be avoided - Learning the terminology and studying the grammar will aid you greatly on the path to fluency.
  • Full human-recorded audio (no TTS on my watch)!
  • Full examples for all words.

See below for more things that will set this course apart from others.

I figured I’d just create a thread for it, even though at this stage there’s not much to show - I’ve just been working on the master spreadsheet, on and off. Maybe I’ll get lucky and be able to get some kind of feedback on the plan so far, from someone… or something… perhaps.

The Plan

The plan is to take:

  • all of the things I’ve learnt from my time working on the aforementioned (and other) course(s).
  • inspiration from the best Duolingo trees (such as German and Norwegian).
  • ideas from various textbooks that I use/have used to study Swedish as well as from my grammar books.
  • other useful information from sites such as Tyda.se, Ord.se and Wiktionary.com.
  • various concepts and methods and such used on other language-learning apps and platforms around the web (plus from other Memrise courses).
  • etc.

…and combine them all to create the best course possible (at least - given the limitations of the Memrise platform).

The Method

The things that I will be doing in order to set this course apart from others, are:

  • The entire course is being built by hand. Of course, word frequency lists and such are being taken into account but this is a labour of love, not merely an import of some data dump; which should ultimately lead to the course being extremely consistent (especially considering that I’ve developed a set of conventions which I plan to adhere to strongly).
  • Things will be organised, logically - much like the German and Norwegian Duolingo trees are.
  • There will be several examples for each and every vocabulary item.
  • Full audio, recorded by yours truly.
  • The most common synonymous and antonymous words/phrases will be included, should they exist (these will also not be images, like on my Duolingo course, meaning that they’ll work on mobile…).
  • Related terms/see also, that is - information on: words which are similar (but not necessarily synonymous); words which are perhaps built on the same base word; words which are commonly confused for the word in question and so on.
  • False friends as well as English (and possibly German) cognates will all be clearly marked as such.
  • A rather expansive set of attributes will be included:
    • There is a vocal register, which means that if a word is colloquial; archaic; derogatory; dialectical; literary; nonstandard; a shortened form; slang (and so on) then it will be clearly marked as such.
    • CEFR levels will be shown for all words.
    • Tips and notes sections, explaining what you are about to learn - just like on Duolingo!
    • The conjugation group will be included for all verbs.
    • A much more expansive part of speech attribute than most courses bother to include.
    • An expansive declension/conjunction and gender attribute, too.
    • Categorised adverbs - temporal, modal, causal etc. (and further subdivisions).

I did, as you may know, experiment with many of these ideas on my Duolingo-Swedish course however the execution was flawed (especially when it comes to synonyms; antonyms and “see also”).


I’ll also be including stuff from various books (mostly science fiction; science fact; fantasy and classic literature) which will consist of a mix of colloquial; technical; formal and literary language.

I have already read a fair few of these books entirely (if not in part) and thousands of words/phrases etc. have been underlined (obviously I won’t be including a large amount of those - that would be far too many! I merely underline words that are new to me, for my own benefit, on my first read through a book).

Now it’s just a matter of going through those and adding them to the spreadsheet. Others - I haven’t read, yet but I’m reading more and more as of late (and mostly in Swedish).

Book List

You can, then, expect at least some vocabulary from the following books:

  • Djurfarmen (Animal Farm) av George Orwell.
  • Slakthus 5 (Slaughterhouse 5) av Kurt Vonnegut.
  • Moment 22 (Catch-22) av Joseph Heller.
  • Främlingen (The Stranger) av Albert Camus.
  • Dorian Grays Porträtt (The Portrait of Dorian Gray) av Oscar Wilde.
  • Brott och Straff (Crime and Punishment) av Fyodor Dostoyevsky.
  • Hobbiten (The Hobbit) av J. R. R. Tolkien.
  • Förvandlingen (The Metamorphosis) av Franz Kafka.
  • Sagan om Ringen (The Lord of the Rings) av J. R. R. Tolkien.
  • Dune (Dune) av Frank Herbert.
  • 1984 (1984) av George Orwell.
  • Liftarens Guide till Galaxen (The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy) av Douglas Adams.
  • Jag, Robot (I, Robot) av Isaac Asimov.
  • Hungerspelen (The Hunger Games) av Suzanne Collins.
  • Metro 2033 (Metro 2033) av Dmitry Glukhovsky.
  • År 2001: En Rymdodyssé (2001: A Space Odyssey) av Arthur C. Clarke.
  • Du, Sköna Nya Värld (Brave New World) av Aldous Huxley.
  • The Martian (The Martian) av Andy Weir.
  • Bröderna Lejonhjärta (The Brothers Lionheart) av Astrid Lindgren.
  • Män utan Kvinnor (Men without Women) av Haruki Murakami.
  • Elefanten som Gick Upp i Rök (The Elephant Vanishes) av Haruki Murakami.
  • Tänk Om (What If) av Randall Munroe.
  • En Kortfattad Historik över Nästan Allting (A Short History of Nearly Everything) av Bill Bryson.
  • Låt den Rätte Komma In (Let the Right One in) av John Ajvide Lindqvist.
  • Pianisten (The Pianist) av Wladyslaw Szpilman.

A lot of vocabulary, however (as I said in the main post) will be taken from textbooks intended to actually teach you the language. I’ll try not to add TOO much literary/antiquated/technical etc. vocabulary but there will definitely be a fair amount of it. If I add it or not will likely depend on how many times it shows up in my books.

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Hello! Is there a way to access this course?

It seems that @sustained never got around to creating (or at least publishing) the course.
Here’s the list of courses being taught by her/him: https://www.memrise.com/user/sustained/courses/teaching/

FWIW, here’s a course-search for Swedish courses with the word “Comprehensive”, the first result being what you might be looking for:

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