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Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin - Berlin Graduate School of Social Sciences (BGSS)

Lisa Pagel

Lisa Pagel

BGSS Generation 2017



School adaptation of refugee children and adolescents in Germany – Institutional and individual conditions






Many of the refugees that have arrived in Germany recently are younger than 25 years. However, research so far has mainly focused on adult refugees. My dissertation project aims to address this research gap on refugee children and adolescents and their integration into the German educational system. Based on Esser’s (2006) integration theory, different institutional and individual factors and their influence on school adaption will be analyzed. In a first step, I will examine which factors (regional as well as individual differences of the refugee students) influence the placement in special refugee classes and how these special classes contribute to the school adaptation. Secondly, I am interested in the fluid and crystallized abilities of the refugee children and adolescents and how a disruption of the schooling biography affects them. The third research question aims to explain how different institutional factors (special classes, class composition) and individual factors (cognitive abilities, personality, living and family situation) contribute to the school adaptation of refugee students in different domains (e.g. school competencies, school belonging, social networks). My dissertation project will draw upon data from the IAB-BAMF-SOEP sample of refugees from the assessment years 2016-2018. I hope that understanding which factors are important for successful school adaption can help fostering programs and policies that support the refugee children and adolescents to integrate and reach their full potentials.


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