SFI is the Swedish for Immigrants course provided by Swedish government for free. And if you are not an engineer and still looking for jobs in Sweden, you may need it! However, if you are like me wanting some precise information how things work before jumping into it, you will have hard times with SFI!
I’ve been in Sweden for six months, and occasionally I’ve decided to check this “SFI” and try to understand some details. However, the information is generally vague and leaves you with questions. And I do not like not having answers, so I always postponed my Swedish language adventure until someday I accepted I have to learn Swedish to get a good job!
Don’t worry, you will not have the same ambiguity after this article, thanks to me 😉 All kidding aside, I think this information will make you feel comfortable and gives you a picture how things work in SFI system.
How to Register to SFI
Anyway, I said Carpe Diem and started from the first concrete information. I need to go to SFI-center to apply. You need to bring a Swedish ID or your passport for application. And also there are some specific days to apply, so check the below link:
Days you can apply to SFI: http://bit.ly/2fO6tgC
There are some vague information in the website that you will take an exam or interview at the center and had to choose a SFI-center to get a class.
Don’t worry about the exam/interview part, but it may be good to check the centers online and decide your 2 or 3 favorites. The below link enables you to compare centers so you can check the location and also the evaluation survey rate of participants. If you don’t check, it’s still okay. They will show you a map of centers and ask which one do you prefer. However, I doubt that they will show all the survey results etc.
Comparing SFI-Centers: http://bit.ly/2g3gkwW
About the mentioned placement test:
I think if you know Swedish at some good level, there may be an actual test for you. But if your Swedish is not there at all or you have some “grocery shopping” level, then you simply talk with an counselor as an interview. And actually, this is more than a registration interview that they ask about your education and work experience before coming to Sweden. And then you decide on your SFI-center and level of course.
The officer may ask you Swedish questions at first, but if you simply say you do not know any Swedish she will switch to English. So this is not really an interview or test, no need to be nervous 🙂
Levels of SFI
Levels of courses link: http://bit.ly/2g3gDYl
This information on the website is very vague, I don’t like it! Also at the registration, you still cannot get a comprehensive explanation on them. So here is what they really about:
The levels of 1,2 and 3 are the ones you can choose your pace. 1 is for people who have little or no education, 2 is who have primary education and/or does not want to spend most of their time to Swedish course and 3 means I will give most of my time and I have the skill and determination of self-study! Generally, you need to have some kind of college or university degree to get this course (I choose the 3rd to get it over with asap but I’m not sure I have that determination- we will wait and see)
And the letters means the actual levels. So, for example if you are a beginner and does not take the placement test, then you cannot start from the 3-D. You need to start from 3-C. And then take a test to proceed D level. So at the registration you will just choose from the Numbers.
Even after choosing “3”, you will still have other pace options to choose. (Swedes like this complex frames I think, their job boards are like mazes and now this, it’s like inception – levels in levels, pace in pace)
You can either take 4 hours in the morning or in the afternoon, or have classes in the evening (not sure but may be 2,5 hours for evening) or get the intensive one 6 hours a day starting from 8.00 in the morning to 15.00 in the afternoon.
I choose also the 6 hours one (good for me!) in the registration, however obviously this does not have much meaning. In the actual course center, they tell about these options again and also enter my education and work experience again! So there is some kind of duplication in the system.
Now, you know a lot more than old-me about the registration to SFI.
The next post is about starting the course and you’re gonna love it! In my new adventures, I will learn there are more levels inside the 3-C course. And also I will explore more about this “you will study in your pace and your teacher will tell you when you’re ready to take the exam” explanation from all over internet. (This is the most vague part of SFI explanations and I really wanted to have answers of how is the schedule, how many months will it take etc. – so be my guest and read the next one if you’re like me)