About us: Who and what is OBS! ?

Learn Swedish – Learn Norwegian – Learn Danish – Learn Icelandic – Learn Faroese – Learn Finnish with OBS!

OBS! started very small in 2003 – taking its name from the Scandinavian abbreviation “obs” derived from “observera” = attention). We started off with online Swedish courses in Germany. One language teacher joined, then another, and soon there were Norwegian and shortly after Danish teachers as well … Now there are 6 languages and a network of about 100 teachers all over Germany. Since 2007 OBS! has built up cooperations with more than 20 partner schools in 5 Scandinavian countries.

The OBS! team – school director Ute Störiko and office assistant Laura Aspegren – advises interested parties in choosing the best courses for them and provides detailed information about the language courses on this website.

Professionalism and customer friendliness are our focus. We advise you personally and take our time for your questions and wishes.

Besides the “big” languages Swedish, Norwegian and Danish, you can learn Icelandic as well as Finnish at OBS! (in Germany even Faeroese).

At OBS! you can also take the SWEDEX, TISUS and SkandCert language exams, which are held at various locations and several times a year.

OBS! is a member of the German-Swedish Chamber of Commerce, the German-Norwegian Friendship Society and the German-Finnish Society.

Ute Störiko PhD
  • Director and founder of OBS!
  • Studies of Scandinavian, English and German language and literature in Kiel and Freiburg, Germany
  • Teaching degree for “Gymnasium” (German high school) and PhD
  • 8 years abroad in Sweden, USA, England and Portugal
  • Lecturer for Swedish at the Language Center of Bamberg University
  • Lecturer in Swedish, Danish, English and German as a foreign language at various institutions, including the Goethe Institute
  • 5 years of program management at the language institute Treffpunkt
  • Multi-Media Training of the Goethe-Institut
  • TestDaF, DiDaZ, SkandCert and SWEDEX examination officer
Quality management

Quality management is a central concern for us.

OBS! is licensed as a SWEDEX test center, can administer the TISUS exams and is an examination center for SkandCert.

We work according to the European Framework of Reference for Languages, which is nowadays used by institutions all over the world. Participants who take a course with us receive a certificate of participation with the level achieved (A1-C2).

The teachers are usually native speakers or have studied Scandinavian languages. They have teaching experience and are trained in the special teaching methods at OBS! Teachers and school management are in close contact with each other.

The teachers are required to respond to the needs and questions of their participants. Regular feedback from the participants enables us to promptly implement suggestions and wishes of our customers in our work.

In recent years, we have held training sessions for our teachers on various topics, such as the “European Framework of Reference for Languages”, “lesson planning”, “individual and group teaching”, “teaching materials” and “working with texts”. At the last workshop, we dealt specifically with the topic of “online teaching”.

Sustainability at OBS!

Is it at all important for a language school to deal with this issue? Yes, absolutely! Language learning often entails travel, and it is more than obvious that today’s challenge to must be to work, travel and live sustainably.

What are we doing at OBS! specifically to achieve this?

  • For our language courses in Scandinavia we always point out environmentally friendly means of transport and advise our customers accordingly. Scandinavia is easily accessible even without a plane or car: there are excellent rail and ferry connections to Scandinavia. (In the meantime, Scandinavian ferry companies are switching to heavy-oil-free fuel). Within the Nordic countries there is a good system of public transport, both in the cities and in the countryside. And of course, you can experience the beautiful scenery of Scandinavia both by bike and on foot.
  • None of the employes in the OBS! office owns a car. Almost all journeys are made by train (daily short ways by bike), occasionally assisted by car-sharing. We also use trains and ferries for business trips to Scandinavia – usually in order to visit the local language schools.
  • In the office we use environmentally friendly equipment and materials, and our flyers are printed on recycled paper.
  • Registrations, inquiries, confirmations and invoices are sent electronically. As a result, almost no documents are printed out anymore.
  • Communication between the OBS! office and the teachers occurs almost exclusively via e-mail, telephone and video.
  • Online classes are the perfect means to help to avoid long commutes.