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Multilingual strategies and resources in education for adult immigrants

The project is an evaluation project commissioned by Skills Norway (Kompetanse Norge) about the use of multilingual strategies and resources for adult students with little or no formal educational background.

Adult learners in the classroom

(illustration photo: Colourbox).

About the project

The background for the project is a need for knowledge about what constitutes good education for adult immigrants with little or no formal educational background. There is a need to improve adults’ opportunities to increase their competence, participate in further education, and receive formal recognition for their existing competence. The overarching project goal is to contribute to knowledge about the use of multilingual strategies and resources in adult education.

Research design

The project was carried out through ethnographic monitoring, a type of action research that draws on ethnographic methods for data collection and analysis. Ethnographic monitoring is a democratic method of research and evaluation, which involves close collaboration between practitioners and researchers throughout the process, from the development of aims and interventions to evaluation and reporting.

The project included one site, which is an adult education center that has significant experience with using multilingual strategies and resources. Participants included management, teachers, multilingual classroom assistants, and their students from many different corners of the world. 

Data collection was carried out over the course of a year, using linguistic ethnographic methods such as participant observation; field conversations; semi-structured interviews with administrators, teachers, multilingual assistants, and students; language portraits; screen recording of digital activities; and pictures of student work. The project draws theoretically on critical sociolinguistics by paying attention to how language contributes to constructing social differences and inequalities.


The project is financed by Skills Norway (Kompetanse Norge).

Published Nov. 13, 2020 10:41 AM - Last modified June 22, 2022 9:50 AM