Girl on yellow background wondering if free danish classes are the best

Free Danish again. What now?

Perhaps you have heard the rumor that as of July 1st 2020, it will again be possible to take free Danish lessons. And perhaps you have been hoping, that this would be the case at IA Sprog.

This news is correct; however, this does not apply to IA Sprog. It only applies to the publicly funded language schools.

Please allow us to summarize a few facts about the current situation in the Danish language learning industry in order to clarify ‘private versus publicly funded’ as best we can. IA Sprog has more than 40 years of experience as a language school in Copenhagen teaching individuals and we have been cooperating with universities and private companies etc. about high quality Danish courses for more than a decade. Until the fall of 2018 IA Sprog was one of the three publicly funded language centers in Copenhagen. However, in 2018 IA Sprog and the two other language centers in Copenhagen lost the public tender. The tender gave priority to economy by 70 % and quality by 30 %. If quality had been the first priority, IA Sprog would have won the tender, because the Municipality of Copenhagen rated our quality above the schools who won. The next tender will be in two years. Subsequently IA Sprog transformed to a private language school, which actually gave a lot of freedom and new possibilities.

What we at IA Sprog strive to deliver

  • High quality Danish courses with a passion to constantly develop the courses to be relevant, efficient and fun.
  • Danish language classes, which combine language learning on a high level with actual topics of relevance for educated adults and plenty of input about Danish culture.
  • A blend of best practice. The virtual classroom has turned out to be efficient for many students during the past few months of corona-closure. In the fall we will continue to offer Online Danish as an option. 
  • Intensive Danish courses which are specifically designed and implemented to match the requirements from highly educated and often very busy international residents, who need to master Danish at a high level and acquire correct pronunciation quickly.
  • Inspiring learning environment where you can meet and network with other international residents like you.
  • Open and ongoing communication between students and teacher – plenty of feedback.
  • Highly skilled teachers with many years of experience in teaching Danish to highly educated learners.
  • A wide selection of courses and levels, e.g. Courses for German speakers and PD3 brush up etc.

Quality over administrative hassle

Being a private language school also gives us the freedom to focus on quality and less on administrative procedures and hassle

  • Courses with no time limits/restrictions, no 5-year rule, no stress to start learning Danish early.
  • Modules with no time restrictions, no voucher system.
  • Courses with no restrictions regarding breaks.
  • Courses with no formal demand for a certain percentage of attendance. 
  • Courses with no deposit – so no hassle to have a deposit refunded fully or partly.
  • No requirement for a CPR number before start.

Publicly funded language schools

From July 2020 Danish classes will be free again at the publicly funded language schools.

This applies to students with a Danish CPR number, and students who haven’t used their five-year right to Danish language education.


However, the free Danish classes still require a deposit of DKK 2000 (from July 2020), and you need to be aware of the numerous requirements for refunding. 

5-year limit

At the publicly funded language schools, you are entitled to Danish language courses for up to 42 months (3½ years) within a five-year period. The five-year period begins when you arrive in Denmark. If it takes you longer than that to learn Danish, you are on your own.

Voucher system

You must complete the Danish program within a pre-determined period of time, as defined in ‘a voucher system for Danish’. One voucher per module of different lengths (3 ½ years for all 6 modules, including Studieprøven, which means 2 years and 9 months for module 1 to module 5/PD3). 


Each module is granted a specific amount of time, so if you are unable to complete a module with a passed module test within the given time, you’ll automatically start using the voucher for the next module, meaning that you will miss the “lost module/modules” in the end.

Therefore, it can be tricky to take a break during a module, for example due to extra bustle with studies, work or travels. It is not always possible to repeat a module, if you for example have been abroad for a longer period and find it useful to brush up your Danish before moving on to the next level.

FVU is not a free Danish course

When talking about free Danish courses it is important to clarify that FVU (Forberedende Voksen Undervisning/ Preparatory education for adults) is still free of charge but it is not a traditional Danish course. It is not for everyone, nor is it a beginner program. In other words, FVU is not a shortcut to free Danish classes but a program for adults who speak Danish but need to improve their reading and writing skills and thereby become better qualified for employment in the Danish labor market. (To qualify for FVU classes you need a minimum level of Danish similar to A1 in writing and A2+ in oral Danish skills.) When you sign up for FVU classes at IA Sprog we will help you determine if your level of Danish is sufficient and we will always start by inviting you to an FVU screening.


Looking for a Danish course for highly educated learners?

We hope you found this information about free Danish useful, and we would love to welcome you to our Danish courses.  Our school is located on on Hejrevej close to Nørrebro Station, which can be reached by S-train, busses and Metro or in our online Danish classes where you can participate from anywhere in the world. And if you are responsible for HR & Development, we would love to help you with high quality Danish courses at the workplace or at your educational institution.

Danish courses