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DRPS : Course Catalogue : School of Literatures, Languages and Cultures : European Languages and Cultures - Common Courses

Undergraduate Course: Foundation Finnish Language 1 (ELCC07001)

Course Outline
SchoolSchool of Literatures, Languages and Cultures CollegeCollege of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences
Credit level (Normal year taken)SCQF Level 7 (Year 1 Undergraduate) AvailabilityAvailable to all students
SCQF Credits20 ECTS Credits10
SummaryA course for beginners with no previous knowledge of Finnish, designed to give absolute beginners a basic, working knowledge of spoken and written Finnish.

1. Auditing (Class Only) is not allowed. All students must take all elements of assessment.

2. The course has two sessions per week. Students must be able to attend both.

3. Students with previous knowledge of the language are not permitted and may be asked to withdraw from the course.
Course description Finland is the easternmost country in Scandinavia sharing a land border with Sweden to the west, Norway to the north and Russia to the east. The country is famous for its forests and nicknamed the ┬┐the land of thousand lakes┬┐. Finland was ranked as the #1 happiest in the world in the UN World Happiness report 2020.

What sets Finland apart from the other Nordic countries (Norway, Sweden, Denmark and Iceland) is its language. Unlike the vast majority of languages spoken in Europe, this is not part of the Indo-European language family. Instead, Finnish is a Uralic language, related to Estonian and Hungarian. It is an agglutinating language with a well-developed case system, but also one of the most straightforward writing systems in Europe. Learning Finnish will give you an insight into a language that functions differently to Indo-European languages, but is still part of the European cultural sphere, which is attested to by numerous loan words. It will also give you access to the wealth of Finnish literature and culture, and provide a gateway to the fuller understanding of the Finnish landscape and people.

Over the course of 10 weeks, Foundation Finnish Language 1 will provide you with the tools you need to express basic wants and needs and communicate in simple terms across a range of situations. Finnish pronunciation is introduced and practised regularly. Finnish grammar is introduced in context, and you will also begin to develop a basic understanding of simple spoken language and texts, all as described in the CEFR for level A1.
Entry Requirements (not applicable to Visiting Students)
Pre-requisites Co-requisites
Prohibited Combinations Other requirements None
Additional Costs Course Book
Information for Visiting Students
Course Delivery Information
Not being delivered
Learning Outcomes
On completion of this course, the student will be able to:
  1. Use and understand familiar everyday expressions, such as simple, straightforward questions eliciting personal information, and basic phrases aimed at addressing concrete needs, when spoken slowly and clearly, or encountered in very short, simple texts.
  2. Produce Finnish language at a basic level both verbally and in writing, using short, simple phrases to introduce him/herself and others, and ask and answer questions about personal details such as where s/he lives and people s/he knows.
  3. Produce texts on basic everyday activities; engage in listening comprehension, spoken and written language activities.
  4. Utilise reliable language resources, whether printed or digital (e.g. bilingual dictionaries, grammar books, translation tools).
  5. Independently acquire and study vocabulary and grammar needed to engage with , and engagement in Finnish language activities outside the classroom.
Reading List

* Suomen mestari 1 Uudistettu (Gehring, Sonja & Heinzmann, Sanni. 2nd edition, 2020. Helsinki: Finn Lectura). ISBN 978-951-1-33423-1

Further reading:

A Grammar Book of Finnish (White, Leila. 2011. Porvoo: Finn Lectura) ISNB 978-951-792-146-6

Suggested online materials (as on 05/02/20) include:

* Dictionaries:

Further worksheets, written and av materials will be provided via the course LEARN page.
Additional Information
Graduate Attributes and Skills The students will be encouraged to develop positive study-habits which will be of use to them in other disciplines, particularly in the further development of Finnish but also in the acquisition of other new languages. Where relevant, students will be able to continue their study of Finnish in any other University at CEFR level A1+.

The students will acquire the following transferable skills in each element of the course:

The students will learn how to be accurate with unfamiliar orthography and this will teach them the value of care and precision.

Listening and Reading
The students will learn how to extract essential information from a simple body of unfamiliar written or spoken language, even though there might not be total comprehension. The students will develop the skill of using known material in these language sources to make appropriate deductions and informed guesses about the meaning of material that is new to them.

The students will develop the ability to progress from learned formulaic responses towards a more spontaneous generation of language. The development of this creativity is one of the most important elements of language learning.

In addition to the specific skills mentioned in a) to c), students will learn the skills of using a dictionary intelligently, learning vocabulary systematically, and understanding the rules - and exceptions - of grammar.
Course organiserDr Alan MacNiven
Tel: (0131 6)50 3279
Course secretaryMiss Gillian Paterson
Tel: (0131 6)50 3646
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