The Kokkola University Consortium Chydenius acts as a joint institution in Kokkola, carrying out teaching and research under the auspices of the universities of Jyväskylä, Oulu, and Vaasa. The Consortium’s areas of specialization mainly reflect those of its university partners: education, data processing, social sciences, and regional studies, business and administration, the natural sciences, and materials technology. The consortium has a large international and national scientific network.

The University Consortium offers both master and doctoral level education. In addition, it engages in scientific research and arranges a wide range of adult education courses. Thus, its activities form a modern platform, combining the goals of educational, scientific, and regional policies.

One of the consortium’s aims is to create pathways for people who have already completed a university degree to follow in order to achieve a change of profession.

The consortium is known for its high standards in information and communications technology. ICT is utilized as a means by which university studies can be freed from the restrictions of time and place. Full use is made of data networks and video teaching as one part of the university networking model developed at Kokkola.

Our research profile focus on learning and teaching, novel learning environments, social inclusion & participation, wellbeing services, and research supporting the renewal of industries.

The particular emphasis of the Social Work teaching and research unit in the Kokkola University Consortium is focused on Citizens’ participation and user involvement in the fields of welfare services, including the people with migrant backgrounds. Another strength of the research is the eco-social approach and, i.e. at a holistic view of the human welfare and environment, including the special issues and cultural research of rural environment.

Teacher education unit has established collaboration with the local education department and the schools (joint projects, teaching practice, teacher’s inservice training etc.). Teacher education unit has organized special needs education teacher training and has expertise in special pedagogy and inclusive education.

In the Spisey project, the University Consortium will work with School of Koivuhaka (City of Kokkola) and School of Mäntykangas (City of Kokkola), Mika Sarkkinen, Education department development manager (City of Kokkola), and Eeva-Liisa Kiiskelä, coordinator of education of language and culture groups (City of Kokkola).


Kati Turtiainen (Orcid ID

Since 2014, I have worked as a senior lecturer in social work. Before academia, I worked as the director of immigration services for the City of Jyväskylä.

During my work career, I have participated in various national and international development projects concerning multicultural work with forced and voluntary migrants. My current research concerns how welfare services promote the integration of migrants in Finnish society, especially in rural areas.

My research interests also include the formation of trust and recognition of (forced) migrants in social work and other welfare services. My current teaching includes social work courses in multicultural social work, social work ethics and master’s seminars.


Leena Isosomppi (Orcid ID:

I work as a senior lecturer in the primary school teacher education program for adults.

My professional career began as a primary school teacher and continued as a junior researcher in teacher education and as a coordinator in the Continuing education unit. I also worked as a university teacher at the Open University before I moved to teaching and research duties in pre-service teacher education (2004).

My research interests include teacher’s professional development, school leadership, academic adult education, gender in education and web-based learning environment. Teaching areas: Interaction and participation at school, school bullying, home-school relationships, democracy, and human rights education, gender equality and awareness in education, learning theories, qualitative research methodology, supervision of master’s theses and teaching practice.


Marjaana Leivo – 2010 PhD (University of Jyväskylä) Education

Since 1989, I have worked as a university teacher and as a researcher in the primary school teacher education program for adults.

My professional career began as a primary school teacher and continued as a special needs teacher in different schools. I have worked also as a head of teacher education unit (1996-2005) and as a senior coordinator in the special teacher education (2005-2017).

My research interests include teacher’s professional development and inclusive education.

My current teaching involves pedagogy and special needs pedagogy, instructional development of reading and writing, inclusive education, learning difficulties, interaction and participation at school, democracy and human rights education, qualitative research methodology, supervision of master’s theses and doctoral studies and teaching practice.

© 2019 SPISEY