SOSGEO2800 – Migration, diversity, and inequality

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Course content

This course provides a theoretical and empirical introduction to contemporary migration and consequences of migration. Whereas migration always has characterized human societies, contemporary patterns of global migration are novel in their political, ethnic and religious significance for diversity and equality within and across nation-states. International human rights regimes counter regional and nation-state independence in struggles over asylum requirements, family reunion rules, welfare rights for migrants and their children, and integration policies. Discussion of migration, refugees and integration increasingly characterize public debate, and questions concerning migration and integration rate high in national as well as regional polls about important political issues and elections.

This course will focus on understanding contemporary migration in a historical and comparative perspective, with a major empirical focus on Europe. Why does migration create such political turbulence, and what are the reasons behind contemporary migration? How does migration connect with diversity, and does migration increase or decrease national and global patterns of inequality? Do for instance the children of immigrants and ethnic minorities fare worse or better than natives in getting jobs, education and more informal social inclusion? Theories of ethnicity, nationalism, transnationalism and racism will inform the discussion of how migration links with diversity and inequality in the contemporary world.

Learning outcome


The course will provide:

  • an overview of major trends in global migration and its consequences for diversity and inequality within and across nation-state borders
  • key social-science concepts and theories used in the study of migration and diversity
  • analytical perspectives in explanations of migration, diversity and inequality


You will develop the skills to:

  • critically assess media and political debates about migration and integration
  • use different concepts and theories in order to understand and explain migration and diversity
  • critically review empirical studies of migration and diversity
  • discuss and write about migration and diversity, following the basic rules of scientific inquiry

General competence

You will be able to:

  • think analytically about migration, diversity and inequality
  • think about contemporary processes in a comparative and historical perspective
  • distinguish between academic knowledge versus personal perceptions
  • develop respect  for ethical considerations involved in scientific work in general


Students who are admitted to study programmes at UiO must each semester register which courses and exams they wish to sign up for in Studentweb.

If you are not already enrolled as a student at UiO, please see our information about admission requirements and procedures.


  • Lectures


  • Take home exam

The home exam is evaluated A-F.

Resitting an exam

Students who wish to resit the exam, must complete the home exam.

Submit assignments in Inspera

You submit your assignment in the digital examination system Inspera. Read about how to submit your assignment.

Use of sources and citation

You should familiarize yourself with the rules that apply to the use of sources and citations. If you violate the rules, you may be suspected of cheating/attempted cheating.

Examination support material

Students may use dictionaries at this exam. Dictionaries must be handed in before the examination. Please read regulations for dictionaries permitted at the examination.

Language of examination

You may write your examination paper in Norwegian, Swedish, Danish or English.

Grading scale

Grades are awarded on a scale from A to F, where A is the best grade and F is a fail. Read more about the grading system.

Explanations and appeals

The explanation is given in Inspera.

Resit an examination

Withdrawal from an examination

It is possible to take the exam up to 3 times. If you withdraw from the exam after the deadline or during the exam, this will be counted as an examination attempt.

Special examination arrangements

Application form, deadline and requirements for special examination arrangements.


The course is subject to continuous evaluation. At regular intervals we also ask students to participate in a more comprehensive evaluation.

Facts about this course






Every spring


Every spring

Teaching language