Arctic Five Education

The Arctic Five - collaboration in teacher education

The Arctic universities University of Lapland, University of Oulu, Luleå University of Technology, Umeå University, and UiT The Arctic University of Norway (the Arctic Five) contribute to better understanding of the contextual and cultural issues of the Nordic educational features via engagement with local communities, indigenous and minority populations, and through institutional and research collaborations. The co-operation in the field of teacher education is part of the UArctic Thematic Network Arctic Teacher Education in Social Justice and Equality activities, and strategic Arctic Five co-operation with Nordic Arctic cities and universities. Read more about Arctic Five strategic university collaboration on the Arctic Five website.

The network objectives are:

  • building a concept for collaboration in teacher education, as part of the global Arctic context
  • mapping the expertise of each partner institution
  • sharing the expertise and best practices
  • transferring the knowledge between partner collaboration and curriculua

Long-term goal is to establish a virtual resource centre and curriculum development towards common Nordic Master programme.

DEVELOPMENT PROJECT: Joint Online Master Course 

The project Arctic Five - Arctic Teacher Education for Social Justice and Equality aims to develop a joint online master study course (10 ECTS) in the field of teacher education. Also, during the process of developing project the research activities are occurring concerning teaching methods, contents, and students' learning processes. Experts from each Arctic Five university will participate in the project. The project starts a brand new collaboration under the Arctic Five network, and it is a significant starting point for the concrete, collaborative actions of the parties. It will strengthen the Nordic cooperation especially in Arctic education through networking and joint teaching.

The project is coordinated by University of Lapland, Finland and funded by the Nordplus Higher Education Programme. The third project period is 10/2020-5/2022. The overall goal of the project period is to implement the course planned and prepared in the previous projects. In addition, the goal of the project is to learn and reflect the process of teaching and learning in online course.

The goals of the project:

  1. to establish a joint online master study course "Arctic Inclusive Education" (10 ECTS) in the field of teacher education
  2. to strengthen the Nordic cooperation in Arctic education through networking and joint teaching
  3. to share expertise within each institutions, and to develop teaching online teaching methods
  4. to create possibility for student teachers to achieve optimal learning results, opportunities, networking and achieve broad Nordic approach in field of educational research

Finalised projects

First project period of Arctic Five Education project was on 2018-19. During the first project year, the project group got to know each other, formed Arctic Five Education network and created a basis for joint online master study course. The second project year 2019-20 continued the work by finalising the curriculum, creating the working environments and online assignments for the study course and training the teacher educators.

Third project period (2020-22)

On third project period, the group made the final additions to the curriculum and piloted the course for the first time. The 1st pilot course was held in spring term 2021 (January-May) and the 2nd pilot in spring term 2022 (January-May). In addition, the project group had several workshops:

  • First Workshop (online), October 19-20, 2020
  • Second Workshop (online), April 13, 2021
  • Third Workshop (online), May 10, 2021
  • Fourth Workshop, (Tromsø) March 21-25, 2022

The process of developing Joint International Study Course has been visualised with both academic and administrative fit. Please see the infograph by clicking the link below.

Project coordination:

Suvi Lakkala, University Lecturer, Academic lead of the project
Faculty of Education, University of Lapland

Jaana Severidt, Head of Internationalisation Services
University of Lapland

Sara Ihamäki, Project Coordinator
Faculty of Education, University of Lapland

Our Experts

Eva Alerby

Professor of Education
Department of Arts, Communication and Education
Luleå University of Technology¨

 Eva Alerby's research interests are relations, identity and diversity in education, as well as philosophical and existential dimensions of education, such as place and space, time and temporality, silence and tacit knowledge. Her recent publications include Silence within and beyond pedagogocal settings (2020) and The school building and the human: An intertwined relationship (2020).

E-mail: eva.alerby(at)

Anne-Mette Bjøru

Campus Alta
UiT - The Arctic University of Norway

Anne-Mette Bjøru lives and works in the town where she grew up. She teaches at the master's programme in Special Education. Her research interests are high school dropout, relational skills, inclusion and adapted education, as well as policy and curriculum studies.

E-mail: anne.m.bjoru(at)

Pigga Keskitalo

Title of Docent, University Researcher 

Faculty of Education
University of Lapland

 PhD Pigga Keskitalo works as a researcher at the University of Lapland, Finland. At the moment, she is working on an Academy of Finland funded project that aims to develop Sámi language distance education. In addition, she is involved in several development projects, including Arctic Pedagogy 2 (funded by the European Social Fund), and eLappi development of teacher competence in digital pedagogy (also funded by the European Social Fund). Keskitalo's research interests focus broadly on the field of Sámi education and its research. For example, she has been involved in developing Indigenous research methods and has been also involved in researching children from different perspectives. Keskitalo's PhD dissertation investigated how the Sámi curriculum in Norway is conducted at the Sámi schools.

E-mail: pigga.keskitalo(at)

Outi Kyrö-Ämmälä

University Lecturer
Faculty of Education
University of Lapland

 Dr. Kyrö-Ämmälä works in teacher education, and she is also a Vice Dean responsible for teaching. Her research interest is in research-based teacher education, in inclusive education, and in enhancing students' cognitive skills. She has worked in international and national projects related to those themes. She is a member of Finnish Teacher Education Forum.

E-mail: outi.kyro-ammala(at)

Suvi Lakkala

Senior Lecturer 

Faculty of Education 

University of Lapland

Dr. Suvi Lakkala is a Senior lecturer in teacher education at the University of Lapland. She is also an Adjunct professor of special education at the University of Eastern Finland and a Visiting professor in the Vytautas Magnus University, Lithuania. Her research interests cover inclusive education, inter-professional team work, educational transitions and teachers' professional development. She has published several dozen articles and book chapters.
E-mail: suvi.lakkala(at)

Gregor Maxwell

Associate Professor in Inclusive and Special Education
UiT - The Arctic University of Norway 

Gregor's research interests centre on child participation with an inclusion focus. He is currently working on a number of international and national research projects and has published mainly on themes related to international classification, participation, school systems, and inclusion and diversity.

E-mail: gregor.maxwell(at)

Erika Sarivaara

University Lecturer
Faculty of Education
University of Lapland

Erika Sarivaara's main research interests are language revitalization, indigenous identity, indigenous education, Sámi education and outdoor learning.

E-mail: erika.sarivaara(at)