Academic Learners in Finland: The Experiences and Perceptions of First-Generation Migrant Family Students in Higher Education

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  • Golaleh Makrooni Ph.D. student at Tampere University
  • Eero Ropo Emeritus Professor



academic environment, academic performance, academic well-being, first-generation migrant family students, grounded theory, higher education, Finland.


The increasing migration and internationalization of societies require a new dynamic architecture in higher education. Understanding the educational journey of specific groups of students is, therefore, of great importance. This study describes the educational pathways of first-generation migrant family students (FGMFSs) who have been successful in their university education. For this grounded theory study, fifteen FGMFSs at universities in Finland were interviewed. Three main categories—the academic environment, academic performance, and academic well-being—were identified as critical factors influencing their educational success in higher education. The results of this study can help educators and policymakers better understand the factors that are important for FGMFSs’ sense of belonging and educational success in higher education.


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Author Biographies

Golaleh Makrooni, Ph.D. student at Tampere University

Faculty of Education and Culture , Tampere University

Eero Ropo, Emeritus Professor

Faculty of Education and Culture, Tampere University


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How to Cite

Makrooni, G., & Ropo, E. (2020). Academic Learners in Finland: The Experiences and Perceptions of First-Generation Migrant Family Students in Higher Education. Journal of Ethnic and Cultural Studies, 8(1), 85–106.



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