Swedish Language Blog

25 Most Frequent Academic Words in Swedish Posted by on Jan 22, 2013 in Vocabulary

Academic writing can be difficult to get through, no matter what language you’re working in. It can be even more of a challenge if you’re trying to get through an academic text in your second (or third, or fourth, or whatever…) language – like Swedish. Just like all aspects of language though, there are certain words that appear more frequently than others.

For those of you just beginning to do more advanced reading in Swedish, you’ll start to notice certain words popping up again and again. Maybe you’ve even started jotting them down in a vocab list somewhere (which is a great idea by the way). But it can be incredibly frustrating early on as these new words keep appearing and you have to keep looking them up. It takes a while before they stick. Luckily, linguists and Second Language Acquisition researchers have taken note and tried to make that process just a bit easier by posting lists of the most frequent words used in various languages.

Below you will find a list of the 25 most frequent academic words used in Swedish – mostly from the humanities. These 25 words actually come from a much longer list (750 words) that I have linked to below. Researchers in various fields of linguistics, including Swedish as a Second Language, have combed through a corpus of over 12 million words and identified the most frequent words used. It’s an impressive project and one that can be incredibly useful for people trying to learn a language.



Dock However
En relation Relation, relationship
Samt And
En studie Study
Social Social
Ett begrepp Concept, idea
En form Form, shape
En betydelse Meaning, significance
En analys Analysis
Utifrån From, based on
Ett perspektiv Perspective
Att beskriva Describe
En text Text
Att innebära Imply, mean
Exempelvis For example
Att utgöra Constitute, to form, to make
En grund Base, cause, foundation
Såväl As well
Enligt According to
Därmed Thus, with
En diskussion Debate, discussion
Ett sammanhang Connection, consistency, context, continuity
En forskning Research
Dels Partly
En tolkning Interpretation

Check out the full list here at En svensk akademisk ordlista! You’ll even find conjugations and example sentences from the corpus.

If you want to learn more about the project and the various researchers involved, be sure to click over to their Om listan page. For even more information, click on The Year of Languages at the University of Gothenburg.

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About the Author: Marcus Cederström

Marcus Cederström has been writing for the Transparent Swedish Blog since 2009. He has a Bachelor's Degree in Scandinavian Studies from the University of Oregon, a Master's Degree in Scandinavian Studies from the University of Wisconsin–Madison, and a PhD in Scandinavian Studies and Folklore from the University of Wisconsin–Madison. He has taught Swedish for several years and still spells things wrong. So, if you see something, say something.