This study explored the process of second language learning and psychosocial adaptation in a group of 11 adult refugees living in Norway. The research investigated aspects influencing the learning process and how Norwegian proficiency affects refugees’ adjustment and psychological well- being. Qualitative methods, consisting of participant observation and semi- structured interviews, were employed to collect the data. Data were analyzed by using the Interpretative Phenomenological Analysis approach. Proficiency in Norwegian appears as a central resource with regard to several domains, such as: employment, maintaining family well- being and engaging in social relationships. Gaining Norwegian fluency would provide refugees with the skills required for engaging in meaningful activities and would prevent negative psychological consequences provoked by isolation or lack of employment. The results indicate that age at migration and educational backgrounds have an important influence on language learning and subsequent language proficiency. These aspects should be understood in relation to post- migration aspects, such as personal investment, attitudes towards Norway and native Norwegians, and features related to Norwegian language usage in different social situations. The findings also illustrate that participation to Norwegian classes is decisive for learning the language. Several aspects of the classroom context- like group cohesion; class size; methods employed and teacher- student relations affected how students engaged in and benefited from the language classes. We argue that a broader perspective- including individual and contextual aspects- is requested in order to understand refugees’ experiences of second language acquisition and adaptation.