About the course

The LanguiCo courses in short:  The courses, meant for higher educated students, make learning Dutch natural, using  the Contact! method that has many mp3’s with dialogue recordings. A lot of attention is given to conversation and listening skills.  My ambition is to make students learn the language as quickly and easily as possible.

Practical information:

The courses are given once a week. They consist of 10 classes of 75 minutes and cost €135,-.

About the teacher:

My name is Carien Bus. Teaching and learning languages have always been a passion. Having studied six foreign languages myself, I have learned a lot about effective (and not so effective) ways of learning them. I discovered that listening a lot and doing conversation exercises are very useful, and that a learning method that is fun is also more effective.

Why a Dutch course at LanguiCo ?

My experience as a teacher is that students (most of them (former) TU students and PhD’s) are busy and don’t have much time to sit behind their desk and study. Therefore, the course material is designed to help students to use all the spare moments they have to study Dutch. All the dialogues from the text book (that was selected for its many vivid and realistic dialogues) will be sent to you as mp3’s that you can put on your mp3-player, so you can learn Dutch by listening to the cd’s while cycling, going to the gym, doing the dishes etc.

In class, the focus will be on the speaking exercises of the ‘tekstboek’, preparing you for real-life conversations. The groups are small, with an average of 6 students per class, which allows everyone to participate fully in the conversation exercises.

To get fluent in Dutch, just the dialogues and exercises in textbooks won’t be enough. To get the students exposed to a lot more written and spoken Dutch, I use many novels to read or audio books to listen to.  Starting with special easy-to-read novels for foreigners, to end with thrillers written for native speakers. Television programs that can be watched with Dutch subtitles are used to.

Students will also get a lot of Dutch songs to listen to (and sing along with): music sticks to the memory a lot stronger than other kinds of text. Just listening to the songs (all translated into English) twice or three times a day will give you a vocabulary of hundreds of words, with hardly any effort!

Contrary to some other methods, quite some attention will be given to grammar. This is because you cannot make correct sentences without grammar, and conversation is an important aspect of the course.

Don’t lose time searching for the meaning of words in dictionaries. In the method, for each text or exercise a Dutch—English vocabulary list is provided and all songs are translated and come with a vocabulary list.

What you can do at home, you should do at home. Therefore, you’ll be able to check the answers to the exercises yourself, so in class we can speak as much as possible. You should be prepared to do 3 to 4 hours of homework per week.

During the classes, explanations will be given in English when necessary, especially in the beginners’ courses. However, the teacher will speak Dutch as much as possible.

We’ll use the books of the Contact! method (depending on the level, the first or the older edition).