Project Activities

2024 activities – we are targeting a finish in 2024 with VOICES!


In February, VOICES visited the University of Nottingham to take part in a discussion as part of the “Contemporary History and Politics Seminar” that was held between 16:00 and 17:00.

A VOICES team greeted Nottingham University once again, with colleagues from which we drafted an article on teacher intercultural competency.

It was exciting to begin the year by negotiating Nord University’s exiting closing seminar in September 2024.

2023 activities


Between 20.11.2023-24.11.2023 the project VOICES ran an online intensive pilot course for M.A. students in teacher education. Over 40 participants attended the sessions each day, representing all parts of Northern Norway. We had fascinating discussions with the participants, exchanged knowledge and practice, and, of course, learned more about intercultural competence. During the course, the atmosphere was warm and welcoming, facilitating meaningful discussions, and participants enjoyed working together on online assignments. It was Ruta Zabityte Andreassen who ensured the course ran smoothly while also teaching it herself – well done, Ruta! A big thank you to all participants!

A VOICES academic visit was hosted by the Ontario Institute for Studies in Education

University of Toronto’s Ontario Institute for Studies in Education hosted Natallia Hanssen and Marina Prilutskaya in September 2023. VOICES’ international board members Emmanuelle Le Pichon-Vorstman and Antoinette Gagne cordially welcomed this academic visit.

It was a varied and engaging program that Marina and Natallia enjoyed, including classes on Supporting multilingual learners and Foundations of Multilingual Education and visiting Toronto Alfajrul Bassem Academy and Catholic school.

Within the Center for Educational Research on Languages and Literacies (CERLL) Research Circle, VOICES team members also had the opportunity to hear a presentation from Dr. Beatrijs Wille of Universiteit Ghent in Belgium on the topic of “Bilingual Education for the Deaf: the Case of Flanders.” The presentation took place on 20 September 2023 from 4-5:30pm.

It is with great pride that we are enhancing our academic cooperation!

Prof. Emmanuelle Le Pichon-Vorstman is teaching at OISE

Visiting schools, with Antoinette Gagne

Visiting schools, with Emmanuelle Le Pichon-Vorstman

VOICES are proud of M.A. theses prepared and defended by our participants!

In June 2023 VOICES could congratulate our participants who successfully defended their M.A. theses within the project.

Ms. EIRIN ROM explored the theme

“Morphological awareness training as a strategy for developing
vocabulary in societal language for language minority students in
compulsory education”.

Here comes Eirin’s short bio


Master i spesialpedagogikk 

Allmennlærerutdanning fra Høgskolen Innlandet

Tegnspråk grunnfag fra Høgskolen i Sør- Trøndelag

Cand mag grad fra Universitetet i Oslo (audiopedagog)


Har jobbet som spesialpedagog i barnehage, grunnskole og voksenopplæring. I to år jobbet jeg som audiopedagog i barnehage tilknyttet Møller kompetansesenter (StatPed). Siden jobbet jeg i voksenopplæringen der jeg underviste ungdommer med immigrantbakgrunn i norsk og engelsk. Videre har jeg jobbet som spesialpedagog på en såkalt forsterket avdeling på en barneskole. De sju siste årene har jeg jobbet som kontaktlærer og spes.ped koordinator på en barneskole med en stor andel flerspråklige elever.

We congratulate EIRIN with her great achievement and with the successful defence of the M.A. thesis!

Ms. LENE ALFARRUSTAD explored the topic

“Lærernes tilrettelegginger for utvikling av leseforståelse

i norsk for minoritetsspråklige elever i grunnskolen”

Lene’s short BIO is below

Our warm congratulations to LENE with this achievement!

Ms. LENE BALSETH studied the topic

Tilpasset opplæring for minoritetsspråklige elever”.

When it comes to Lene’s BIO, she tells us the following:

Jeg er utdannet grunnskolelærer 1.-7. med realfag (4.årig bachelor). Deretter jobbet jeg to år som lærer på 4.trinn før jeg startet på videreutdanning. Videreutdanningen ble en master i tilpasset opplæring.

Congratulations to LENE – great achievement!

VOICES visit the University of Nottingham and the hubHERE team, 4.5-14.6.2026

Between 4 May and 14 June 2023 Mariya Riekkinen brought regards from VOICES (and from Åbo Akademi) to the team of the hubHERE project at the School of Education, University of Nottingham. Led by Prof. Joanna McIntyre, Hub for Education for Refugees in Europe (HERE) provides a central reference point for information relating to refugee education throughout Europe in the form of a curated, searchable database of academic and non-academic resources on refugee education. This Academic visit provided an opportunity to bridge our two projects, both focusing on education of new-comers, through knowledge and practices exchange which took place during participation in teaching, seminars, discussions, reading circles. We are looking forward to submitting new joint funding applications and publications!

Participation in the ESCAPE Symposium, 25.4.2023

On 25 April 2023, the VOICES team members, and in particular Natallia B. Hanssen and Marina Prilutskaya took part online in the ESCAPE Symposium “Plurilingual Pedagogies and Digital Technologies to support learning in STEM,” organized by the Toronto University and the OISE in partnership with the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada. The presenters and participants were involved in vivid discussions of experiences from the Escape projects and the practices of using the Binogi platform with animated educational videos and quizzes created from the central content of the curriculum. The VOICES project warmly thanks the organizers for this event!

Webinar on intercultural competence for teachers, 28.3.2023

Nord logotyp

On 28 March 2023, the VOICES team members contributed to conducting a free webinar on intercultural competence at Nord University. The webinar was addressed for teachers who want to polish their skills in intercultural competence to apply them in teaching pupils from other cultures, those speaking other languages that Norwegian and Sami as mother tongues.

Associate professor Marina Yurievna Prilutskaya (on the left) told about intercultural competence as a concept. University lecturer Ragna Hovig Ødegaardshaugen (on the right) shared examples of what one can do, what one should do, and what to avoid meeting students with Norwegian as a second language. These are Ragna’s own experiences from working in a secondary school at Stovner in Oslo.

M.A. seminar on intercultural competence, 16.3.2023

Conducting interviews with teachers in Northern Norway within the VOICES project was also beneficial for teacher education students who are involved in the project. Our students decided to write their M.A. dissertations based on the data collected with the project. 16 March 2023 our Research team from Norway and Finland held a session where the drafts of the M.A. thesis were discussed. Congratulations, dear students, with drafting excellent works!

2022 activities

International Advisory Board Meeting, 11.4.2022

On Monday 11 April 2022, our International Advisory Board gathered for an online meeting. The VOICES participants presented their visions of project milestones and activities and got insights from our esteemed experts – Emmanuel Acquah (Åbo Akademi University), Emmanuell Le Pichon-Vorstman (University of Toronto), and Antoinette Gagne (University of Toronto). The further implementation steps are set up, and our VOICES continue!

Data collection started, May, 2022

In May 2022, VOICES began collecting data. This phase of data collection recruits teacher education students, school principals, teachers providing primary education to migrant and minority pupils, minority and majority language pupils their parents, as well as members of minority-focused NGOs in Northern Norway to complete surveys and interviews!

Steering Committee and International Advisory Board meeting at Åbo Akademi University – November 2022

On 11-12 November 2022 Åbo Akademi University welcomed project collaborators Natallia Hanssen and Marina Prilutskaya of Nord University as well as Emanuelle Aquach of Åbo Akademi’s Minority Research Profile during a joint Steering Committee and International Advisory Board meeting. This was a productive and fascinating discussion of the draft programme for our forthcoming course on teacher intercultural competence!

Promulgating project findings during HERE inaugural conference (University of Nottingham, 22-23 November 2022)

During 22-23 November 2022 our VOICES were listened to by the participants of the Hub for European Refugee Education (HERE) inaugural conference which was chaired by Professor Joanna McIntyre at the University of Nottingham. The presentation “Substantive Equality of Refugee Pupils in Education Acts of Finland and Norway” reported on the results of needs & gaps review in national laws and policy documents during Parallel Session 2: Equality and Inclusion.

HEE, Venue

HERE venue

Presentation by Joanna McIntyre

Conference programme – congratulations, VOICES!