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Title: Managing and supporting adolescent students experiencing mental health issues : a case study exploring motivation and career choice in further education
Author: Williams, J. E.
Awarding Body: University of the West of England, Bristol
Current Institution: University of the West of England, Bristol
Date of Award: 2014
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This is a small scale, intrinsic case study conducted between 2007-2010 within a large further education establishment (Wenhill College). The college is located in the south west region of England encompassing a large geographical catchment area, offering full and part time programmes of study for 14 -19 year olds and adult learners aged 19 plus. The choice of study topic was based on the primary motivation to explore adolescent student lives in relation to their further education experience and the impact mental health issues have had on their lives. As a clinical practitioner teaching adolescents in further education, I had the opportunity to conduct 'insider' research, leading to the collection of original and insightful data. The study employed a qualitative research methodology underpinned by a social constructivist theoretical framework and included a diversity of participants through which data was gathered by differing means; life history interviews and life path continuums with student participants and semi-structured interviews with college staff. The former elicited rich, in-depth data (Sikes and Potts, 2008) and the latter created a flexible yet consistent structural interview framework. Both approaches facilitated the extension of ideas, opinions and perceptions; the results of which are presented and analysed narratively within the thesis. The implementation of thematic analysis resulted in the contextualisation of participant experiences and events, bounded within the social setting of Wenhill College. The overwhelming sense of participant learned helplessness and experience of surrogacy (Peterson, 1993; Bloomer, 2005; Cherry, 2013) permeated the narratives, demonstrating the link between personal experiences of mental health issues and help seeking/non help seeking behaviour; motivating factors influencing a career choice in health and social care. The outcomes of this study suggest further exploration across local and national levels around the experience of individual circumstances to enhance greater understanding of adolescent mental health and the provision of appropriate support. In addition, training for further education college staff to enable the effective management and support for adolescents experiencing mental health issues.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available