The Future of Education

Edition 13

Accepted Abstracts

Migration Students’ Educational Biographies

Ragnar Arntzen, Østfold University College (Norway)

Odd Eriksen, Østfold University College (Norway)


We wish to highlight the Norwegian educational system in a multilingual and multicultural perspective, based on the individual minority student`s own experiences, thoughts and reflections. In the sample of students we have used the following criteria: We wanted to hear the stories of students from various parts of the world, students in various professional education programs, as well as students who moved to Norway at different times during their education. Some of the informants had to change languages repeatedly during their school history. The data material for the study is semi-structured interviews / conversations with eight minority students at one University College. In the interviews, we focus on the following issues:

- What are the challenges they have faced at various levels of education, and what factors do they experience as essential to their linguistic and educational journey through different school levels?
- To what extent have they been able to utilize their previous linguistic, academic and cultural resources in their studies in Norway, and what are their reflections around their own multilingual and multicultural capital?
- What experiences do they have with different methods in higher education, and how do they think that the university college can facilitate the efforts of multilingual students in a better way?
In the lecture, we will present some of the educational biographies and discuss what factors that are most important in term of making it possible for migrant students to succeed in Norway.   We also discuss to what extent such narratives can be a useful teaching tool, in the perspective of teachers using personal learning stories as a foundation for relevant teaching and good learning.

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