Norwegian Literature and Language

Norway, a country located in Northern Europe, is part of the Scandinavian region. Through a Norwegian literature and language program, you'll learn about the rich cultural heritage associated with the region, which may qualify you for a career in interpretation or teaching as described below.

Is Norwegian Literature and Language for Me?

Career Options

People with Norwegian language skills are needed in government agencies and international business firms. For those interested in learning about the language and culture of Norway, a few colleges and universities in the U.S. offer degree programs in Norwegian language and literature. Learning outcomes include the chance to develop your communication, writing and critical thinking skills, as well as pursue a career as a college or university instructor or interpreter and translator.

Information for Teachers

If you choose to become a college professor, you'll teach Norwegian language and literature courses, evaluate student performance, perform research and publish findings. Many professors seek tenure, and the more research you publish, the better your chances for advancement. You may enjoy a flexible work schedule, with most of your time dedicated to researching and lecturing. A doctoral degree is usually required to teach at a university.

Information for Interpreters and Translators

As an interpreter or translator, you'll be expected to convert Norwegian to another language. While a translator works with written language, an interpreter converts spoken Norwegian. Knowledge of at least two languages is required, and many employers prefer to hire those with between three and five years of relevant work experience. Neither specific degrees nor certifications are required.

Employment and Salary Information

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), foreign language and literature postsecondary teachers earned a median annual wage of $58,620 in May 2013. Employment opportunities for all postsecondary teachers were expected to grow by 19% from 2012-2022, which is faster than average compared all career fields.

Interpreters and translators that same year earned a median annual wage of $42,420. Employment of interpreters and translators was expected to increase by 46% between 2012 and 2022, which is significantly faster than the national average of 11%.

How Can I Work in Norwegian Literature and Language?

Undergraduate Programs

Through a bachelor's degree program in Norwegian studies, you can receive comprehensive instruction in Norwegian language and speech. You can also learn about Norwegian customs and traditions, politics, history and literature. Coursework may include topics in Nordic film and Scandinavian fiction. Courses on the Vikings, modern Scandinavia and the Baltic States may also play a role in your curriculum. You may also have the option to major in Norwegian while pursuing a minor in another Scandinavian language, such as Danish, Swedish or Finnish. Some Norwegian language degree programs afford students the opportunity to travel to Norway to gain first-hand experiences of the country, including its people and culture.

Graduate Programs

You may also pursue a Master of Arts and Doctor of Philosophy in Norwegian. Graduate degree programs may involve the study of Old Icelandic and the history of Scandinavian languages. You'll also pursue topics in Scandinavian drama, history, mythology and politics. Learning outcomes include an understanding of literary history, text analysis and critical theory.

A Doctor of Philosophy degree in Norwegian language and literature might allow you to focus on a specific genre. Prerequisites include a reading knowledge of German, French or another Scandinavian language.

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