Life in Sweden

Swedes speak amazing English but they don't think they do. They are also very friendly people but they are afraid that you might not be. If you make yourself available and easy to approach, they will. Dylann from OR, Year Program
It was hard to adjust to the reserved nature of the Swedes and how quiet most of my family and classmates were, but by the time I came home, I understood the Swedish culture and appreciated it. Olivia from CO, Year Program
Speak the language! It’s the only way you will be good at Swedish. Catherine from CO, Year Program
Be open to Swedish traditions because at any holiday there will be singing and dancing, which may be a bit strange or intimidating at first, but is actually a ton of fun. Olivia from CO, Year Program
There is more freedom, especially for teenagers. Sarah from AZ, Year Program
Be brave and talk to your family and classmates; they will want to get to know you, but will be too shy to begin a conversation. Olivia from CO, Year Program
Get as involved with your class at school as soon as possible. Be open, be willing, and try anything and everything that is offered!! Katherine from NY, Year Program
Don't let the long, dark winters get you down! The spring and summer months are beautiful and light! Caitlin from WA, Year Program
Swedes are, in general, rather shy about getting to know new people (especially teenagers) and so it's really important to take the initiative and ask people to show you things or have a cup of coffee. They will almost certainly be thrilled to be asked! Caitlin from WA, Year Program

Digging Deeper

Language Resources
Cultural Resources
News and Media
Movies and Documentaries
  • Homo Sapiens 1900 (1998)
  • Wonderful Adventures of Nils (1962)
  • Simon and the Oaks (2012)
  • The Seventh Seal (1957)
  • Fanny and Alexander (1982)
  • As It Is in Heaven (2004)
  • You, the Living (2007)
  • The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo (2009)
  • We are the Best! (2013)
  • Eat Sleep Die (2012)
  • A Swedish Love Story (1970)
  • My Life as a Dog (1985)
  • They Call Us Misfits (1968)
Books
  • The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo (2005)
  • The Circle (2011)
  • Moomin Stories (1945-1993)
  • Let the Right One In (2005)
  • Simon and the Oaks (2012)
  • Wonderful Adventures of Nils (1906)
  • The Hundred-Year-Old Man Who Climbed Out of the Window and Disappeared (2009)
  • Gösta Berlings Saga (1891)
  • The Emigrants (1949)
  • Popular Music from Vittula (2007)
  • The A to Z of Sweden (2010)
  • Scandinavia: A History (2016)
LGBTQ Resources (Diversity) Heritage and Ethnicity Resources (Diversity)

Language Learning

Applicants to Sweden are expected to enroll in an online Rosetta Stone language course and study independently prior to departure on program.  The mandatory online course will be organized and monitored by AFS Sweden who will email registration and login instructions to each student.  AFS Sweden requires that each student completes at least one level of the course before their arrival in Sweden for the program. Once in Sweden, it will be expected that you finish level three by your Mid-stay orientation in January. 


Note: The links and resources listed in "Digging Deeper" have been provided to AFS by people involved with our organization, including alumni members, volunteers, etc. AFS has not reviewed the resources in their entirety and presents them "as is" for your own information. As such, the sites, publications, films, etc. do not necessarily reflect the approval of nor the views, opinions, and/or values of AFS.