How to improve your Dutch skills in 30-hours steps, a horse & water

About learning Dutch, we all have our personal language goals. For one, just learning basic social Dutch skills for getting around  in everyday life is enough, another wants to achieve fluency for a career at work. You might wonder, how much time and effort it takes to achieve your language goal? With this article we shed some light on the hours of teaching and study time investment it might take and what aspects can influence your study results.


You can take a horse to water but………….

First of all, we would like to remind you that even with the most perfect Dutch language trainer, you as a student needs to do the real work, which is :  do some extra personal study. Your Flowently tutor (for both private and group training) can inspire you with tailor made interactive lessons and challenging homework, but it is the student self who needs to process and master it all. Zet ‘m op! Go for it!


For you, to do – Study time investment

From level A0 to A1 it will take 100 hours of self-study
For level A2, 200 hours more (= total 300 hours)
For level B1, 400 hours more (=  total 700 hours)
For level B2, another 600 hours on top (= total 1300 hours)
(this is not about your lessons but your personal study time investment)



Is Dutch an easy language to learn?

What will make it easier for you to learn the Dutch language? Do you belong to the lucky ones who speak
German, Swedish, Danish or Afrikaans? Then it will be much easier to understand and learn Dutch. Even within one year you might be able to speak Dutch fluently and pass the NT2 state-exam II. Are you a language lover and do you speak several languages? Knowledge of other languages and grammar will help you see similarities between languages, which makes it easier to comprehend and learn.


Best tips to learning Dutch

  1. Use any opportunity to integrate the Dutch language into your daily routine. 
  2. What is your trigger? What do you find interesting; sports, politics, cooking, literature, movies, travelling? Use your motivation and enthusiasm for learning Dutch as well.
  3. The 50-50 method. Once you have achieved a certain level of understanding Dutch, insist that your Dutch friends and colleagues stop speaking in English to you and tell them that you will speak in English to them until you feel comfortable to switch to Dutch. This will speed up your learning process.
  4.  If your level is between A2 and B1? Then learn this sentence by heart: Sorry, ik spreek geen Engels (Sorry, I don’t speak English)
  5. Be patient and kind with yourself. Just realize, you can be a very smart person but simply miss the talent for Dutch. Flowently’s ‘Dutch Magic Phrases’ will help you overcome frustration! Have fun!



The 30 hours steps for learning Dutch

30 hours – From A0  to  A1 – Basic Dutch for Absolute Beginners

What will you learn in these first 30 hours? Basic vocabulary, your first 1000 Dutch words, basic grammar, simple conversations, pronunciation, dankjewel en alsjeblieft and the hidden Dutch politeness, greet and meet, basic café-restaurant-shop vocabulary, order and pay, your first Dutch interactions.
Textbooks: Nederlands in gang, Taaltempo Nederlands, Dutch on the go

30 hours – From A1  to  A2 – Beginner to Intermediate

All of a sudden all the ‘ge’ ‘ge’ ggg’ from the Dutch around you start making sense and your life will become more interesting: You’re going to learn the past tenses, imperfectum and perfectum, the famous SOFTKETCHUPX-story. You will expand your vocabulary up to 2000 Dutch words.
Textbooks: Nederlands in gang, Taaltempo Nederlands, Dutch on the go

30 hours – Preparation Civic Integration Exam 

If you want to take the civic integration exam at level A2, we recommend another 30 hours for a decent preparation. Refresh basic grammar subjects, repeat vocabulary and practice Knowledge of Dutch Society exam.
Textbooks: Nederlands in gang, Taaltempo Nederlands, Dutch on the go, Kijk op Nederland

30 hours  – from A2  to  B1 

We’ll now definitely leave all Jip and Janneke Dutch behind us and dive into complicated sentence structures, conjunctions, vocabulary, expressions etc. You will learn more about separable and reflexive verbs and finally you start feeling a difference: It seems easier to follow a conversation but taking part is still a challenge.
Textbooks: Nederlands in actie, Taaltempo Nederlands, Dutch on the go

30 hours  – from B1-  to  B1

You can now read and understand most text and follow most conversations but there is still a lot to learn. You should not allow people to switch to English for you. At a party with friends and family , or at your work with colleagues, please ask them to use the 50-50 method. Your Dutch will improve rapidly.
Textbooks: Nederlands in actie, Taaltempo Nederlands, Dutch on the go

30 hours  – from B1  to  B2

Depending on your language goals we can choose between different textbooks. Nederlands op niveau is the follow-up from Nederlands in actie. Op naar de eindstreep – A2 to B2 – is a method for learning Dutch based on the 12 provinces of The Netherlands.
Textbooks: Nederlands op niveau of Op naar de eindstreep, Taaltempo Nederlands, Dutch on the go

30 hours  – from B2-  to  B2

Your vocabulary will increase up to 5000 words. At this level the focus is on speaking skills, about a wide variety of subjects. Dot the I’s and cross the t’s, in grammar, writing, presenting, negotiating etc.
Textbooks: Nederlands op niveau of Op naar de eindstreep, Taaltempo Nederlands, Dutch on the go

30 hours – Business Dutch / Scientific Dutch

To refine your Dutch language skills at this level we can work in textbooks like ‘De juiste toon, zakelijk Nederlands voor anderstaligen’ or ‘Wijze woorden, wetenschappelijk Nederlands voor anderstaligen’, ‘Trefwoord’ or other books. 


Flowently Certificates & state exams

If you like, you can complete each level with a test and receive a Flowently Certificate. We can help you prepare for your civic integration and NT2 state exams as well. Contact us or inform your tutor.


Get started now! En nu aan de slag!

For tips on learning Dutch, read

More details about language levels

For personal advice, please fill in the contact form and we will get back to you soon. 


Written by Flowently

Published by: Flowently

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