Purpose of the Activities Requirement:
At St. Olaf, your study of Norwegian includes three hours per week of class time, individual homework assignments, group homework assignments, language lab assignments, and co-curricular activities. The purpose of the activities requirement is to provide you with many opportunities to use your Norwegian outside class in more informal, real-world settings. These activities will help you to improve your speaking and listening skills, acquire a better understanding of modern Norwegian culture, and give you the chance to get to know the professors, the students and guests from Norway, and the American students studying Norwegian. Since there will be many co-curricular activities offered each semester, you may choose the types of events that are most interesting and helpful for you. Please see the department calendar for the current schedule of events.
Requirements for Courses:
Students in Norwegian courses must attend
eight co-curricular events, with no more than four of the same
type of event (see types of activities below for more specific
For each activity you attend, you need to take notes at the event, and write a summary / response paper afterward. The summary / response papers should be in English, typed (12 pt font and 1 inch margins) and include 1/2 page of summary describing what occurred at the event and 1/2 page of your response to the event.
See your course syllabus for the specific dates the responses are due, but in general you should attend half of the required events before mid-term and half afterwards. We recommend that you make a plan for completing this requirement at the beginning of the semester.
Types of Activities:
The co-curricular activities range from informal barbeques, coffee hours, and conversation tables to more formal lectures, concerts, and art exhibitions. Many of the activities are organized by the Norwegian professors, students from Norway, and students in the Norwegian House or the Norwegian Club. In addition to these departmental activities, there are usually a variety of lecturers, artists, and musicians who visit St. Olaf each year.
1. Norwegian Conversation Table (Required to attend a minimum of 2)
The Norwegian Conversation table is held every Monday evening from 6-7 pm in the Black Ballroom. Students at all levels of Norwegian are welcome to participate in these informal gatherings. Each table is staffed by native Norwegian students, upper-division American students, and/or Norwegian Department faculty.
2. Norwegian Homework Help
The Norwegian Homework Help sessions are held from 8-9 p.m. on Sunday evenings in the Norwegian House and on Wednesday evenings in the World Language Center. The sessions are staffed by one native Norwegian student and one upper-division American student. If you are having difficulty in Norwegian, we request that you try the homework help sessions before you request a tutor.
3. Interview Sessions with Students from Norway
Go to the Homework Help session or arrange another time to meet with a Norwegian student and complete an interview about topics that interest you. Questions and answers must be turned in along with the response.
4. Language Learning via Activities
You will have a chance to speak Norwegian as you take part in an activity, such as singing, skiing, knitting, rosemaling, cooking, making Christmas ornaments, playing soccer or other sports, etc.
5. Panel Presentations on Norwegian Culture
There will be short presentations in Norwegian on a variety of topics about modern Norway given by students from Norway, the residents in the Norwegian House, Norwegian majors, or Nordic Studies concentrators. Afterward, there will be time for questions and discussion in both Norwegian and English.
6. Film Series
There will be a monthly Norwegian Film Series in Old Main 15
7. Lectures, Concerts, and Art Exhibitions
Each semester, there will be several designated lectures, concerts, and art exhibitions by guests from Norway. See the Norwegian Department calendar for the list of events.
8. Norwegian Christmas Choir (fall semester only):
The Norwegian Christmas Choir will rehearse several times in November and December to prepare for singing at the Norwegian Christmas Chapel Service. The rehearsals will be during the second half of the weekly Conversation Table on Mondays (6:30-7:00 pm). See the Norwegian Department calendar for the dates. Students will receive credit for two co-curricular activities for attending two or more rehearsals and one co-curricular for the performance.
9. Norwegian Christmas Chapel Service (required
for all students, fall semester only):
At the end of fall semester, the Norwegian Department sponsors a Norwegian Christmas Chapel Service with Norwegian Christmas carols, the Christmas Gospel read in Norwegian, and short descriptions of Christmas in Norway by Norwegian students.
10. 17th of May Breakfast (required
for all students, spring semester only):
At the end of spring semester, the Norwegian Department sponsors a 17th of May Breakfast to celebrate Norwegian Constitution Day. The breakfast features Norwegian meats and fish, bread and cheeses, and there is entertainment by students from Norway.