Norwegian I 30NORSK1

Course Objectives

The study of Norwegian is related to identity, culture, education and how these are linked to the past and present. The programme will allow us to understand ourselves in a larger, multicultural context.

Mastering the Norwegian language, with its two language variants, and developing a language to discuss the language, is also an art. The language is manifested through texts, which are discussed through both theoretical and practical approaches.

The study of Norwegian is a science, a professional study and a basic subject in the primary and lower secondary school. The subject didactic approaches and practice are derived from professional insights. With a solid professional understanding of the subject, you will be able to organise your teaching to meet specific objectives. You will be able to adapt your teaching to meet the needs of individual pupils, and in addition, become more confident in your role as a teacher.

Becoming a competent Norwegian teacher implies that one must learn to organise the instruction so that all the five basic skills (cf. Knowledge Promotion Reform – “K06”) are cultivated. These basic skills are: being able to express oneself verbally, being able to express oneself in writing, being able to read, arithmetic and employ digital tools. The professional demands which you will encounter in this programme reflect these fundamental skills. Please review the main points under point 3: Content- “What the student should know”.

Didactic competence implies, among other things, that you must reflect over the relationship between theory and practice. The reflective approach will be particularly apparent when you are placed in a teaching practice position at a designated school, but will also be a central characteristic of the presentation of subject material at the institution.

The teaching role also requires social competence. In your work, you will meet a wide variety of pupils and parents. In the Norwegian-language programme, you will develop your ability to observe, listen and understand others, to lead group processes and to familiarise yourself with the values and experiences of the pupils as expressed in the texts which they produce.

The role as teacher requires an ability to meet challenges and change. As a Norwegian teacher, you will never stop learning your profession. Remaining professionally updated is a continuous process. You must also be able to adapt to changes in your professional role. This means varying your responses to different pupils as well as showing flexibility in dealing with changes in curriculum and pedagogical approaches.

The teaching role demands professional ethical competence. Within the subject of Norwegian, this might, for example, be reflected by the choice of fictional literature or texts which you present to your pupils. The fundamental values which you communicate through your instruction must be suitable, not only with respect to the material which you mediate, but also as expressed through interactions with your pupils.

Course Description

1. Verbal use of the language

In the teaching profession, verbal expression will be your primary tool, and in teaching Norwegian, it is vital that you are aware of this fact. This awareness is dependent on an understanding of the differences between spoken and written language, insight into various verbal-communication situations and the various forms of verbal expression, such as narratives, descriptions, explanations and lectures. You will be given opportunities to practice these forms of expression.

Classical rhetoric concerns the science of communication and is therefore a source of inspiration and understanding of good verbal presentation. The spoken language consists not only of technical skills. The living word may be used to explain and convince, as an aesthetic experience and as a means of recognition. An understanding of elementary rhetoric is therefore essential, and a good classroom discussion is a major verbal method which you can utilise in your teaching practice and in mediating new insights

Another bearing element in this subject is knowledge about linguistic variations of a geographic, social, cultural or ethnic nature.

In order to organise good instruction in basic reading and writing, you must be familiar with the most important aspects of verbal development in a child’s pre-school years.

The student should:

  • Be familiar with the nature of verbal communication and linguistic diversity
  • Know the main characteristics of classical rhetoric
  • Know how verbal communication can be effectively used for goal-oriented teaching
  • Master fundamental verbal communication styles such as the narrative and the lecture

2. Reading and writing instruction, reading and writing development

Basic reading and writing instruction helps one to become a thinking, writing and reading individual, and forms a foundation for learning all other subjects. Everyone’s reading and writing skills are in a state of constant evolution, and this applies to your own reading and writing, as well as that of your pupils.

Knowledge of the reading habits of children and their ability to read and understand various texts is vital. This applies to both the initial reading instruction and other reading training. As a teacher, it is important that you learn about techniques which can help the pupils to develop practical reading strategies. By modelling reading strategies for a variety of purposes, you can, as a teacher, lay a foundation for the development of reading skills that may be applied to all subjects.

Knowledge of a pupil’s writing development is important. A theoretical foundation is important so that students will be able to assess the development of writing at the primary level, when pupils’ differing levels of written ability are often not as obvious as is in the case of older pupils.

On the basis of their knowledge of the development of pupils’ writing, students should be able to assess the methods and teaching materials used in the teaching of the youngest children, and plan and organise the teaching of effective and differentiated reading and writing skills.

As far as students’ writing skills are concerned, it is important that during the course of their studies they practise both academic and non-fictional writing, as well as other genres. Students should also try out the new digital forms of texts. An important goal of these activities is that students understand the connection between writing and learning; in addition this will enable students to be more capable of teaching others how to write.

The student will:

  • Gain insight into the theories regarding reading and the development of reading for all age groups, and assess the various stages of pupils’ reading skills.
  • Be able to follow the development of pupils’ writing skills.
  • Learn to assess methods used to teach the youngest children reading and writing skills.
  • Plan and organise the teaching of reading and writing skills for pupils who have Norwegian as a second language.
  • Acquire knowledge of various language-stimulating measures for all age groups.
  • Acquire knowledge of the various forms of writing training and be capable of assessing various teaching and learning methods.
  • Learn to develop their own writing skills and awareness of various genres and be capable of perceiving the relation between writing and learning.

3. Pupils’ texts

Norwegian didactics is, to a great extent, concerned with pupils’ texts. Students will encounter many kinds of pupil texts, for instance: the first attempts at creating texts by second grade pupils, an imaginative text written by a sixth grade pupil, a nature poem by a fourth grade pupil and a resonant non-fictional text by a tenth grade pupil. In order to understand these texts and be able to assess them, students must acquire a linguistic and genre-theoretical foundation and practise analysing and assessing such texts. The assessment of pupils’ texts forms an important part of the practical part of the study programme. To assess texts written by pupils with a minority background, in addition to standard linguistic theory students will also require knowledge of language typology.

Within this topic students will also gain knowledge of process-oriented writing, in which special attention is paid to response. Students will be able to practice such activities with other students, and with pupils during their period of teaching practice.

The student will learn:

  • Basic linguistic theory in order to be able to assess different types of pupil texts.
  • To assess pupils’ texts in a professional and pedagogical context, on the basis of official guidelines for assessment.
  • To follow the development of writing skills of pupils of various age groups.

4. Literary genres

Acquiring insight into and understanding of literary language is the most important starting point for the effective teaching of literature. Students will read a selection of both older and contemporary texts; adult literature; children and young people’s literature; and various genres such as picture books, poetry, short stories and novels. When working with these texts, emphasis will be placed on the aesthetic, ethical and didactic aspects, amongst others. In addition, the study programme will also focus on the historical context of texts, as well as the timeless appeal of good literature. Literary terms may be said to constitute the basis for the reading and interpretation of literature; consequently, students must learn to use them, so they will be able to analyse the texts they read.

The literary discussion is an important didactic genre in connection with the reading of literature, and students will be given the opportunity to participate in such discussions in the classroom. Students will also learn how literature may be used in individually adapted teaching situations.

In a culturally and ethnically diverse society, reading literature presents new possibilities and challenges. In order to meet these possibilities and challenges, the teacher must be especially aware with regard to the choice of texts, and how these are taught. Consequently, some of the texts used in the study programme will be chosen from non-Western countries and cultures, and a special emphasis will be placed on the teaching of literature in the multicultural school. Diversity in schools is also concerned with linguistic diversity, and in this context the two Norwegian language variants are of importance. The choice of texts in Norwegian will reflect this, and will be evenly selected with regard to both variants.

Mythical traditional material will also be included in this unit. The folk tale genre is important in various cultures, in addition to other mythical and mythological material, drawn for instance from the Sami culture. The same approaches used in the study of literary texts will also be used in studying these texts.

To facilitate a theoretical and general approach to reading literature, students will be given an introduction to the theme texts and analysis.

The student will:

  • Be able to comprehend the special characteristics of language used in literature.
  • Develop knowledge and awareness of how a literary text is a product of the past and present.
  • Be able to understand the connection between mythical and literary texts.
  • Develop an awareness and knowledge of the function and position of literature and mythical and traditional texts in a teaching context.
  • Be able to plan and arrange teaching of literature in multicultural classes.

5. Factual prose

While literature forms one category, non-fiction forms the other category into which all written texts may be classified. Students will encounter non-fiction texts in various ways. Students will read and learn about the lyrical essay which lies on the boundary between fiction and non-fiction; and gain knowledge of how new media create new genres, amongst them the text message, which may be said to belong to a combined oral/written genre.

Basic knowledge of hypertext as a form of text is important, as is attaining didactic insight into traditional non-fiction genres such as readers’ letters, articles and commercial texts.

Assessment of learning tools, digital and others, is also an important part of this course, since new methods of teaching in primary and lower secondary schools create new needs for new learning materials.

The student will:

  • Gain insight into non-fiction as a textual category, including digital texts.
  • Learn to give an account of, and discuss, variations in a genre.
  • Learn to assess various types of learning materials.
  • Learn to organise teaching which includes non-fiction texts.

6. Composite texts

Children and youth live in a diverse culture in which sound, images, writing and speech often constitute a unified whole text. It is becoming increasingly important to acquire knowledge in this area in order to understand the world children and adolescents live in. The composite type of text is also called a multimodal text – a concept which refers to the complex relation between several modes, visual, auditory and verbal.

Composite texts may be both analogue and digital. For instance, examples of analogue texts include theatre performances, newspapers, oral presentations, comics and children’s drawings with words and letters, and pictures books etc. These are the forerunners of the more recent digital genres which are more complex, such as web pages, computer games, pedagogical learning resources and complex short texts such as commercials, music videos and short films.

Work with composite texts, however, is not an isolated part of the subject, Norwegian, but strongly integrated into the work involving the general interpretation of texts and text production.

In their future roles as teachers, students must be able to plan and organise work involving the production of simple complex texts, both digital and analogue.

To be able to decode and adopt a critical approach to the present day’s transcribed text culture involves new textual skills which the course will focus on.

The student will be able to:

  • Give an account of the interaction between several modes in a composite text.
  • Evaluate composite texts from both aesthetic and ethical perspectives.
  • Understand the relation between composite texts and literary texts and non-fiction texts.
  • Plan and organise teaching which involves composite texts.

Learning Methods

Norwegian is taught in the autumn and spring semesters during the first year of studies. It comprises 30 ECTS credits and the workload is spread evenly over both semesters.

The programme comprises varied teaching and learning methods: joint lectures, seminars, supervision in groups, writing groups, short courses, use of Classfronter and individual supervision, including learning counselling. Learning counselling between the subject teacher and the student will encourage the student to become more self-aware regarding his/her own learning and what he/she needs to focus on in order to become an effective teacher of Norwegian. This involves the student reflecting upon the progression they have made in relation to the set aims of the subject.

The semester plan will be handed out at the start of each semester, and is a binding document that provides details regarding the content and practical implementation of the semester. The semester plan provides information regarding deadlines, organisation and the obligatory parts of the course.

It is important that students practice writing throughout their studies. The texts they write in various genres will be collected in a work portfolio. The work portfolio will include all the student’s work that he/she has completed during the course of the year, both small and larger pieces of work and rough drafts and finished texts. Some of these texts will be assessed by the subject teacher, while other texts will be evaluated by individual students in cooperation with other students. The aim of building a portfolio is to enable students to work with their texts over a period of time. Consequently, there will be no need for the subject teacher to supervise all of the portfolio work leading up to the ‘completed’ texts. However, the programme requires that the texts should be of such a standard that the portfolio receives approval by the subject teacher.

During the course of the programme students will also be given a Norwegian assignment related to flexible practice.

The Norwegian programme includes five assignments which the students must pass in order to register for the examination in the second semester. These assignments will be assessed as pass/fail.

Obligatory examination in linguistic knowledge

Students will be examined in basic linguistic knowledge related to the teaching of reading and writing at the primary level, and in analysis of pupils’ texts.

Obligatory oral presentations

Students must give oral presentations to their co-students and the subject teacher based on a topic from the theoretical part of the syllabus or their experiences from practical training. At least one oral presentation must be given during the first semester and one in the second semester.

Obligatory writing-day

A writing day will be organised during the course of the programme. This will be assessed as pass/fail.

Approved multidisciplinary project

Approval of portfolio

The texts written by students during the course of the programme will be included in a work portfolio which must be approved before the end of the second semester. The semester plan, which is available at the beginning of the programme, provides more specific information regarding the contents of the portfolio. Two-thirds of the texts in the portfolio should be written in the Norwegian language variant which is not used in the final examination.

Assessment Methods

Norwegian comprises two types of assessment – continuous and final assessment. The continuous assessment includes the feedback students receive regarding oral and written work. (See Learning Methods, documentation and course requirements).

The final assessment after the second semester comprises:

  • An individual written examination (6 hours)
  • An individual oral examination

Both of these examinations will be based on syllabus topics, work from the approved portfolio and/or an unknown text. The grade allotted for the written examination counts for 40% of the final grade, while the grade for the oral examination counts for 60%. Students will receive a single grade on their final certificate, graded A to F, where A is the highest grade and E the lowest passing grade.

For more detailed information, please refer to Telemark University College’s Examination Regulations.

Minor adjustments may occur during the academic year, subject to the decision of the Dean

Publisert av / forfatter Ian Harkness <>, last modified Ian Hector Harkness - 10/10/2009