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Overcoming language barriers to citizenship: Predictors of adult immigrant satisfaction with language training programme in Sweden

Journal article
Authors Monica Reichenberg
Girma Berhanu
Published in Education, Citizenship and Social Justice
Volume 14
Issue 3
Pages 279-289
ISSN 1746-1979
Publication year 2019
Published at Department of Education and Special Education
Pages 279-289
Language en
Links https://doi.org/10.1177/17461979188...
Keywords adult education, citizenship, human capital, immigration, language attitudes, social capital
Subject categories Learning, Pedagogical Work, Pedagogy

Abstract

The Scandinavian countries currently face their largest ever wave of immigration. The immigration wave increases the need for immigrants to learn the host language to be able to participate in work life and become a citizen of the host country. Yet, the language training programmes – ‘Swedish for Immigrants’ in Sweden have come under great criticism for inefficiency. But now, surveys have been carried out with the adult immigrants taking part in the language training programmes. Consequently, the purpose of the present study is to identify predictors of adult immigrant students’ attitudes towards language learning at the training programmes in Sweden. Using survey data collected from adult immigrants participating in the language training programmes, we conduct a series of ordinary least squares regressions. We report that the majority of immigrant students are satisfied with the language programmes. Our findings indicate that satisfaction seems to be due to variables such as level of education, age at arrival, and language exposure through social networks but not to socioeconomic status or sex.

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