Käyttäytymistieteellinen tiedekunta


Recent Submissions

  • Henttonen, Pentti (Helsingin yliopisto, 2016)
    The aim of the present study was to investigate the relationship between autonomic arousal, activation and auditory change detection in musicians and non-musicians, as reflected by the mismatch negativity (MMN) component of event-related potential response and cardiovascular activity measured in heart rate. 20 musicians and 20 non-musicians were included in the study. An oddball paradigm composed of stimuli deviating in three difficulty levels from standard tone in pitch, duration and location was utilized with two conditions of passive listening, which were followed by intermittent active listening tasks. Only pitch and duration deviants were analysed. Musicians exhibited greater MMN amplitudes, shorter MMN latencies and superior behavioral performance evidenced by discrimination accuracy and reaction time. The effects were observed for both pitch and duration deviants. Musicians’ resting heart rates were lower during pre-experiment and both pre-task baselines, indicating higher cardiovascular efficiency. Greater task-related heart rate acceleration in active listening was observed in the musician group than in the non-musician group. MMN amplitude to pitch deviants during passive listening tasks correlated positively with behavioral accuracy in active discrimination tasks. Faster heart rate during active listening predicted better task performance in musician group, whereas the effect was opposite in non-musician group. In musician group, higher heart rate increased the task performance more for subjects with smaller MMN amplitudes. These data thus imply that cortically measured preattentive auditory discrimination capacity is reciprocally connected to the arousal dimension of autonomic nervous system’s activity and that musical expertise affects this relationship. Results add support to the evidence of musicians’ superior auditory change detection capacity measured in event-related potentials and behavioral performance, while providing new insights to the role of psychophysiological arousal in sound processing and other mental tasks.
  • Fasulo, Alessandra (Helsingin yliopisto, 2016)
    In this master’s thesis, I have reviewed, how women who have moved to Finland from abroad, position their motherhood under the influence of both Finnish residency experiences and transnational residency experiences. In particular, I have clarified the type of negotiations contained in their narration of motherhood, and how the feelings of belonging and not belonging to the Finnish society and motherhood environment are described as a part thereof. The study’s questions are set in the fields of educational and social immigration and motherhood research. In terms of theoretical and methodological choices, it focuses on social constructionism, narrative constructionism and a theoretical framework on positioning. The empirical material of the study is formed of the interview narration by three mothers. We produced one oral interview and a second, either oral or written, interview with each interviewee. In the interview method, I utilised the Biographic Narrative Interpretive Method (BNIM). The analysis I produced had two phases: in the first phase, I aimed to define narrative themes in the narrations by means of narrative content analysis, where motherhood experiences were given particular emphasis. In the second phase of the analysis, which utilised position analysis, I paid attention to the position the mothers took in their narrations, objected or built on when telling about motherhood, what categorisations could be defined in the narrations, and how and in what relation were the feelings of belonging, or not belonging, told. In their narrations, the mothers brought up several positions that they found significant, of which the position of being a resource, the position of requiring strength and critical thinking skills and the position of lonely and limited motherhood were the most significant. When the motherly ways and values of the mothers I interviewed did not correspond to the equal and uniform requirements encountered in the Finnish society’s social or institutional communities, they were said to be made strange, exceptional or limiting. Holding on to the characteristics of one’s own motherhood, when the Finnish representation of motherhood is considered uniformly discriminating, is said to e.g. be a place that requires particular strength and questioning skills. The successful experiences, particularly concerning prenatal clinic services and the arrangements of giving birth, seem to have, on the other hand, strengthened the sense of security and the formation of the sense of belonging towards the institutional society and in general, the entire Finnish society.
  • Turusenaho, Päivi (Helsingin yliopisto, 2016)
    Changing work as well as changing expertise requirements are an often discussed topic in our current public discussion. In this study, the main interests were the conceptions of expertise and experiences of changing work and expertise requirements. The participants of the study (n=12) were a group of professionals working in a company providing language services. The aim of the study was to analyse how the participants understand expertise and what kind of changes and new expertise requirements they have experienced at their work. The main analytical concept of the study is expertise, and the theoretical framework consists of research literature on expertise on individual and collective dimensions which were compared to the conceptions of expertise among the sample group. The changes the research subjects have experienced at work were thematically analyzed by mirroring their views against some viewpoints on changing work and the historical work types. The study is based on a qualitative research strategy and the material was analysed by applying phenomenographic content analysis. The material was collected through one-to-one interviews. The work related expertise as described by the participants is presented through examples, whereas the phenomenographic analysis focuses on the participants’ conceptions of expertise and on experiences of changes of work. To conclude, the results of the study were collected to categories of description. The results clearly showed that the contextual dimension of expertise as experience in the professional field was considered as one of the most important element of expertise. In addition to knowledge, skills, self-awareness and education, expertise was also related to learning new things as a prerequisite for expertise development. Also, knowing the customer was seen as expertise. In addition, respect from others was also seen as part of being an expert. In this material, expertise was portrayed more as an individual rather than a collective quality, even though the work was considered a team effort. The changes at work were related to increasing customer demands, changing technology and financial pressures. Despite these changes, the underlying nature of work was seen as unchanged and overall, the changes were not considered to lead to any completely new expertise requirements.
  • Heinonen, Helka (Helsingin yliopisto, 2016)
    In this thesis I examined meanings of gender articulated by children, on the basis of video art pieces. I am interested in the meanings of gender the children would bring up and how this would be related to the wider thematic of gender. Based on earlier research, children have been noted to express normative interpretations of feminist fairy tales which challenge traditional gender positions. This has been seen as a wish to localize in a gender position that is perceived as correct. Children have been noted to challenge the norms in addition to maintaining them. In my thesis I reflect on how the children I interviewed position themselves and the video art pieces related to my research based on gender. My research was supported by post-structural feminist thought and feminist film theory. The essential concepts were gender, discourse, subjectivity and subject position. For my research I interviewed ten children between the ages of 7 and 10. I examined their views on gender thematic on the basis of the video art pieces Punahilkka ja susi (2012), Lasso (2000) and Masa (1999). I applied discourse analysis as a research method. I read material with my focus on gender thematic and, for instance, searched for gender related distinctions and different gender related positions mentioned by the interviewees. I aimed for gender sensitivity while doing research. In my research, gender appeared as a complex discourse. The children expressed many dualistic and normative views on gender. On the other hand, gender related dualisms and norms were also subverted. The children could be seen to simultaneously describe normative discourses and still position themselves or others outside of these discourses. They can be noted to both repeat and resist gender related cultural ways of thinking. The meanings of gender were shown to be persistent but also something containing possibilities for change. Views on gender could be subverted and the concept of gender could be deconstructed during the research process. On the basis of my research, I propose that critical examination of gender with children can contribute to, for example, the deconstruction of normative views on gender. This kind of examination is important because it contributes to the actualization of gender sensitivity, equality and diverse possibilities for being human. Video art pieces can offer a rich conversational basis for thinking about gender.
  • Moilanen, Ville-Johannes (Helsingin yliopisto, 2016)
    Aims. The aim of the research was to find out are there any connections between parents socioconomical status and secondary school students highest degree goals, their personal study goals, and how they experience them. In addition, one aim was to find out are there any connections between parents socioeconomical status and how students motivate themself for their goals. Futhermore, I consider do these connections differ between genders. Methodology. The research was conducted as a part of a larger Mind the Gap reseach project funded by the Academy of Finland in the spring of 2013. 1342 first year secondary school students from 17 different secondary schools in Helsinki took part in the research. Students named their highest degree goal and also named one personal study goal. The answers were ana-lysed with the help of a contingency table. On questions of personal project analysis invento-ry, Little´s (1983) PPA-indicator was used, and on motivation Deci and Ryan´s (1985) SDT-indicator. The results were analysed by using a one-way analysis of variance. Results and conclusion. The study shows, in accordance to earlier studies made in a Finnish context, that there is a connection between parents socialeconomical status and students highest degree goals, but the connection is not strong. Futhermore, the study shows that 50,8% of first year secodary school students don´t know what is their highest degree goal. No significant connection of personal study goals on secondary school students was found. But there is a significant connection between how students experienced reaching their goals and how they motivated themselves to reach them. Students whose mothers are managarial employees experienced stonger progress and persistence. When both parents have a higher sociaeconomical status, there is a connection between the students intrinsic motivation to reach their peronal study goals. The results show that a higher sosioeconimical status leads students to find a natural intrinsic motivation for secondary school studies.
  • Paunonen, Erno (Helsingin yliopisto, 2016)
    Videogames are thought to be able to make learning more efficient. However, videogames should contain certain elements to reach this potential, for example clear goals, the right amount of challenge and fast feedback. Optimal challenge is reached – according to a truism – when “the task is not too hard or easy”. This notation is also a central part in the flow theory (Csikszentmihalyi, 1975). However, the exact evaluation of what is the optimal difficulty level cannot be made based on it. There are only a few studies, which try to find where the optimal difficulty level lies and these are not able to give a clear answer. In this thesis I used success rate (probability of successful execution of a task) as an objective measurement of challenge. I studied, what the success rate should be for optimal learning to occur and how it affects flow and motivation. In addition, I will evaluate the independent effects of flow and motivation on learning and performance. The study contained three groups with 11 participants each, who were made to play a simple reaction game on a touch screen monitor. Each group had a target success rate which were 0.2 (hard), 0.5 (medium) and 0.9 (easy). Participants played three gaming sessions with this target success rate. Between these sessions a test was conducted. In the test the game stayed the same, but the challenge also was same for all groups. Before every test, the participants filled a flow and motivation questionnaire. The study did not find that difficulty level would affect learning, flow or motivation. However, the 0.5 success rate group evaluated the challenge to be the most pleasant. This could affect motivation in the long run. Flow and motivation were found to increase performance at an individual level. The study did not show that the task difficulty level is as important of a factor as has been previously thought, but it reveals that flow and motivation do play a role in performance.
  • Verkhovskaia, Valeria (Helsingin yliopisto, 2016)
    Usability testing is a widely used technique to evaluate web site usability. Roughly divided usability testing can be conducted in laboratory or remotely by a moderated synchronous test or by an unmoderated asynchronous test. There has been comparative research of the methods, but so far it hasn’t provided yet all the answers. Therefore, this Master’s thesis sought to find whether there are qualitative differences in the usability problems identified by the methods or whether the type of the web site affects the results of the usability testing method. In the research three different public web sites were tested: an online store, an authority web site and an online newspaper. These were tested with 39 test users divided in three conditions: laboratory testing, synchronous testing and asynchronous testing. Users also evaluated the web sites and the experienced workload in each condition. It was found that evaluating these web sites majority of the most severe usability problems were found with all of the usability testing methods, and each method revealed also unique usability problems that were not identified by other methods. The laboratory tests revealed more usability problems than others, especially related to navigation, body text, information architecture and interaction design. Also minor usability issues were identified the best with laboratory testing. On the other hand, the synchronous usability tests combine features of the laboratory and remote tests resulting in missing less usability problems that would have been found with other methods. These proved also good for finding usability problems concerning links and buttons, body text and information architecture and design. Asynchronous tests took less time and scored a little better in finding usability issues related to technical implementation. The results showed that moderated methods are more suitable for evaluating texts or the structure of the web site. These methods are potentially better for the earlier stages of the design process, but they were also more effective for finding less severe usability issues. On the other hand, the asynchronous method might be suitable when there are certain issues that need to be validated, when there’s a need to review main problems quickly or the web site needs to be tested once more before the release.
  • Viita-Aho, Mari (Helsingin yliopisto, 2016)
    The starting point of this thesis is the question of a propable tension between educational and economic objectives in art museums. I have chosen to approach this question by focusing on gallery education. My primary aim has been to analyse what kind of concepts, goals and values gallery education is founded on. I have also deliberated upon the change in gallery education during the last decades. The data for this thesis was produced by interviewing gallery educators in nine (9) separate interviews. The interviews were partly structured and proceeded according to chosen themes. I have analysed the interwiews by using the discoursive approach. The main themes and negotiations that arose in the interviews were set between institutional and individual point of views, but also between economic objectives and intrinsic values. As a result of the analysis of these negotiations I have constructed a discoursive field of gallery education. On this discoursive field gallery education is approached from four points of view – as an experience, as service, as learning, and as an opener of new horizons. On the basis of the discoursive field, I conclude that gallery education and its development at the present time has two strong emphases: individual experience and economic interests. These emphases are partly opposite and partly supportive to each other. There is a tendency to underscore the economic objectives and design activity according to these objectives. Sometimes this tendency is opposed and answered by using the concept of experience. By using experience it becomes possible to keep the economic objectives at a distance. On the other hand, the stress on experience shifts activity to more individualistic ways of thinking and sometimes further away from cultural and educational goals. On the basis of this thesis it seems that emphasizing individualism in general is producing a need to strengthen the connection between society and individuals, and anchor the activity back to the society. It also seems that this is done by bringing the focus back to the intrinsic values of the activity by applying the goal of societal effects to gallery education as a separate object.
  • Ojala, Tiia (Helsingin yliopisto, 2016)
    Goals The aim of this study was to examine how prosodic features affect the perception of prominence with Finnish participants. In more detail, the focus of the study was on the strength and hierarchy of four different acoustic features, length, intensity, fundamental frequency and its dynamic movement. These are examined for the first time in the same experiment. Addition to the acoustic features, the order of the stimuli is also considered to have an effect on perceived prominence. Generally, the phenomena of speech perception have been explained with both universal theories and language specific features, which could affect the perception differently for speakers from different language backgrounds. Method This experiment had two parts. First part of the test included 200 stimuli which all consisted of three sounds. The stimuli were synthetic, word-like stimuli, approximately 300 milliseconds long and varied randomly with regard to the acoustic features of length, intensity, fundamental frequency and its dynamicity. The second part of the test included 200 stimuli with three sound sequences, that were manipulated from the 300 ms long sound into syllable-like, approximately 100 millisecond long sounds. Alltogether 24 informants took part in the experiment (14 for the first part, 15 for the second) and they judged which one of the three sound stood out from the others. The answers were analysed with a linear mixed-effect model. Results and conclusion Based on this experiment, fundamental frequency and length of the stimuli were the most important features of perceived prominence for Finnish speakers. Dynamicity of the pitch and intensity of the stimuli were not statistically significant features. It's possible that the influence of pitch height is so great that it overrides the other features possible impacts on perceived prominence
  • Halsti, Jenni-Elisa (Helsingin yliopisto, 2016)
    In this study I examine the discussion of school choice in Helsingin Sanomat in early 2010s. School choice has been part of the finnish comprehensive school system since 1990s. In the earlier studies school choice has been linked to educational unequality. It causes segregation of schools when taking into account students’ sosioeconomical backgrounds, learning results and school’s reputations. In 2010s Finnish media has also started to publish more articles about school choice from this point of view. Research literature considers that media has power to control discussions in the society: it defines which topics are important and what should be thinked about them. The aim of this study is to examine what kind of discourses can be found in Helsingin Sanomat during 2011–2015 and discover if some of the discourses are hegemonical. The research material consisted of 52 articles about school choice. The articles can be found from the internet archives of Helsingin Sanomat. I used rhetorical discourse analysis as a method. Discourse analysis is based on the idea of language as social actions that reconstructes reality. From this point of view newspaper discourses are crucial part of school choice phenomenon. There were four discourses in this material: segregation discourse, trust discourse, parenthood discourse and realism discourse. First three of the discourses were more critical towards school choice than realism discourse. Segregation discourse emphasized the consequences of school choice to equality. Trust discourse represented trust to the Finnish comprehensive school system and parenthood discourse described parental actions. Realism discourse questioned connection between school choice and segregation. It doesn’t believe in denying school choice as a solution to segregation. Segragation discourse and parenthood discourse were in hegemonical position, whereas realism discourse in marginal. The study concludes that the Finnish comprehensive school system has strong position in Finnish society and that there were concerns about growing segragation. In addition to that parents’ growing interest in their children’s education were essential part of school choice phenomenon.
  • Naskali, Tiina (Helsingin yliopisto, 2016)
    Positive deviance is a theoretical behavioural approach. It reviews the impact of education and problem solving through individual activity. Positive deviance as an approach has been involved in larger amount in the development of workplace and organization development. For the educational field the linkage is rather new and additional research was needed. This study does not focus on education as a whole but more specifically the learning process. This is due to the active characteristics of a learning process. Learning is a continuous activity and cannot be bound to certain structures and contexts only. This study wanted to bring knowledge for to support the design of education and teaching processes. The study aimed to place positive deviance to the framework of the radical educational theories. In addition to similarities clear differences were expected to be found between the theories chosen to the comparison. However, the expectation was that positive deviance can be seen as a separated radical educational approach. By reviewing a case example this study aimed to define whether positive deviance can be seen as a new type of approach, answering the current demands set on the education sector. The study was based on written materials and combined phenomenological basis with classifying text analysis. The concept of positive deviance was first defined based on earlier studies focusing on its theoretical background. After concept definition the study compared the positive deviance approach with theories of anarchist pedagogy, pedagogy of the oppressed, swarm intelligence and expansive learning. The comparison was done by using a comparison framework, structured specifically for this purpose. The following seven factors were used as the basis for the framework: activating effect, departure from norms of a referent group, intentionality of behavior, voluntary characteristics of action, individual activity, community activity, and aim to make a positive impact in the society. In order to define the applicability of positive deviance to the education sector, the functionality of the approach was described through a case study executed in Argentina in early 2000s. The study showed that positive deviance is not identical with the studied radical theories. The terminology differed somewhat between the chosen theoretical approaches. However, this did not have a significant effect on the overall comparison results. In this study the review of the case study did not give a full picture on the applicability of positive deviance to the educational field. The results of the case study, however, showed a possibility for the applicability of the approach, as long as the context factors are properly taken into account.
  • Tammilehto, Jaakko (Helsingin yliopisto, 2016)
    Goals: There is much variation between individuals in adjusting to chronic diseases. This study examined the direct and the indirect associations between personality, coping and life satisfaction in people with chronic diseases by using the typological approach to study personality. In the typological approach of personality, personality is studied by forming personality types which take into account a number of personality traits at the same time. Based on previous research, the context of life situation influences the relationship between personality and coping. The primary objective of this study was to deepen knowledge about the importance of personality and coping in the well-being of people with chronic disease. In addition, the main objective was to examine the suitability of the personality’s typological approach in a sample of chronically ill. Methods: The study sample was a part of the Midlife Development in the United States follow-up study material. Adults who suffer from various chronic diseases (n = 1486, 59.4 % women, mean age = 60.6 year) were selected for the sample. Personality traits were measured using the likert-scaled items which describe big five personality traits. Coping strategies were assessed using likert-scaled statements based mostly on the COPE Inventory measure. Life satisfaction was assessed with indicators of satisfaction in different aspects of life. Latent profile analysis was used to investigate the structure of personality types and multinomial regression analysis was used to study associations between personality types and age, sex and whether one has chronic disease or not. The associations of personality types, coping strategies and life satisfaction were studied by using structural equation modeling. Results and conclusions: Based on the results of latent profile analysis resilient, overcontrolled and undercontrolled personality types were found. Both direct and indirect associations were detected between personality types, coping and life satisfaction. The resilient personality type predicted higher life satisfaction compared to overcontrolled and undercontrolled personality types. Coping by engagement and focusing on and venting of emotions partially mediated associations between personality types and life satisfaction. The results provide support for the role of personality factors in life satisfaction of people with chronic disease. Possible explanation models are discussed for the results and the role of the results is assessed from the perspective of the chronically ill people’s quality of life. Lastly, discussion is provided about the limitations of the study in the light of generalizability and reliability.
  • Huovilainen, Tatu (Helsingin yliopisto, 2016)
    Background and aims. Most of the knowledge about neurocognitive processes of reading is based on artificial reading paradigms, such as serial presentation of isolated words or linguistic violation paradigms. The main aim of this thesis was to develop a novel approach to study the neural processes of reading. Specifically, a naturalistic reading task was employed due to concerns for ecological validity, that have been raised about the effects of task on the reading processes. A combination of methods was used to overcome difficulties introduced by this unconstrained reading approach. The second aim was to apply this novel paradigm to test if early differences in the neurocognitive processing of words from different word classes can be found during naturalistic reading. Early processing differences between word classes have been observed before, but they might be task-specific or due to processing related to linguistic violations. Methods. Magnetoencephalography (MEG) and eye movements were recorded simultaneously while participants (8, 4 males) silently read a biographical novel presented on a computer screen. The eye movement recording was used to relate the MEG recording to specific word fixation events during reading. Independent component analysis (ICA) was used to remove eye movement artifacts from the MEG recording and to extract activations of individual cortical areas. An automatic parser was used to extract word class information for all the words in the reading material. Event-related fields (ERFs) evoked by fixations on nouns and verbs were compared using nonparametric cluster-based permutation tests in time window of 0–250 ms after the fixation onset. Results and conclusions. The novel combination of methods used in this study proved to be a promising approach to examine neural processes of reading. In comparison to mainstream methodology of cognitive neuroscience of reading, the present approach has several theoretical and practical advantages. Statistically significant differences between nouns and verbs were found in the sensors above the left temporal cortex, in the 138–164 ms and 184–206 ms time windows after the fixation onset. The results confirm some of the earlier findings that were based on non-naturalistic reading settings and suggests that syntactic and/or semantic information is accessed remarkably early in the course of normal reading.
  • Ruokonen, Anne (Helsingin yliopisto, 2016)
    Objectives. This study examines the cooperation between home and school from the viewpoint of teacher students. In particular, this study focuses on the expectations and concerns of teacher students relating to cooperation be-tween home and school. The teacher students that took part in this study (N=19) were in the final stage of their stud-ies when the interviews were conducted so they were to soon enter working life and start cooperating with parents. Much research hasn’t been done on the subject of teacher students’ thoughts, expectations and concerns concern-ing home-school cooperation so the subject is important and topical. The theoretical framework of this study takes a closer look at the legal framework, the purpose of home-school cooperation and the practical implications of the cooperation. The aim of the empirical part of the study is to discover the expectations and concerns that teacher students have about home-school cooperation. Methods. The research data of this qualitative study consists of interviews of nineteen teacher students. The inter-views are part of a bigger project lead by Kirsi Pyhältö and funded by the Academy of Finland. The project is called ’From Student teacher to Experienced Teacher: Learning an Active Professional Agency’. The purpose of the inter-views was to find out how teacher students’ professional agency progresses. There were sixteen questions in the in-terview and they were related to studying in the teacher education program and teachers’ work at school. The re-search interviews were conducted during spring 2011. The data comprised 894 pages. The interviews were analyzed by means of qualitative content analysis, quantitative content analysis and data-oriented content analysis. Results and conclusions. The concerns and expectations of teacher students relating to home-school cooperation could be divided into three categories: student-related, teacher-related and parents-related. Most of the concerns were related to students and more specifically to special students and multicultural students. Teacher-related con-cerns came in second and were mostly related to teachers’ professionalism, hurry and boundaries. Parents-related concerns were mostly related to the opinions of parents, facing parents, parents’ boundaries and their taking part in the cooperation. Most of the expectations focused on the teacher: teachers’ qualities, professionalism, appreciation and respect. Parents-related expectations came in second and were related to the fluency of the cooperation, the parents’ positive attitude towards the teacher and the parents’ involvement. Least of the expectations focused on students. Teacher students hope that students say positive things about the teacher at home and that students feel themselves important also at school. Teacher students described their concerns about the skills of teachers relating to home-school cooperation. This study can be utilized in, for example, the teacher education as the interviewed teacher students describe issues that are currently not taught in the teacher education but they hope to learn in order to improve their skills in home-school cooperation.
  • Kinnunen, Laura (Helsingin yliopisto, 2016)
    The study presents international academics working in the University of Helsinki and their access to the work environment language-wise. The transformations encountered by the higher education systems, like the University of Helsinki, have changed the face of the academic profession. Many of the goals of internationalization, such as increased international cooperation and ability to operate in international and intercultural environments, are connected to the need to use languages. This is why the meaning of language has come relevant to the access to different work environments. The data for the study came from the research subproject “Foreign professional’s access to Finnish labour market” in the project “Opening up pathways for competence and employment for immigrants” by the University of Jyväskylä and the University of Helsinki. The questionnaire survey was carried out among employees from abroad on the payroll or on a grant (n=236) at the University of Helsinki in spring 2010. The method to analyze the data was quantitative for closed questions and statistical analysis was utilized. For open-ended questions qualitative analysis was used. The study subject was approached from the theoretical point view of second language acquisition, international communication competence, and concept of stranger. The research questions address more closely on what are the perceptions of the foreign academic professionals on their current level of language skill as well as learning and using language, what conditions related to language limit the access and possibilities to the commitment in the work environment of the University of Helsinki, and what are the perceived needs and development suggestions related to language that would improve the commitment to the work environment of the University of Helsinki. The study showed that there has not really been development in the Finnish skill during the time and to attend Finnish language courses did not have remarkable affect especially to the usage of Finnish in more official work situations. The most used language at work was English and change using Finnish came around after ten years in Finland. For accessing the work environment, Finnish language barrier, difficulties in finding ways to participate in decision making and social sphere, and difficulties in understanding one’s rights and obligations in the working environment were evident among the international academics working at the University of Helsinki. The improvements on how international academics perceive working environment would language-wise require systematic changes in the University of Helsinki that go beyond surface level actions that have taken place, despite of the existing discussion on internationalization of higher education, strategic plans, and policies. The language policy in a multilingual work environment works in an excluding manner by blocking access of certain employees without sufficient Finnish skill.