Use this URL to cite or link to this record in EThOS: http://ethos.bl.uk/OrderDetails.do?uin=uk.bl.ethos.669444
Title: Narrating their liminal journeys : the stories of women 'returning' to education
Author: Murray, Ann
Awarding Body: University of Glasgow
Current Institution: University of Glasgow
Date of Award: 2015
Availability of Full Text:
Access through EThOS:
Access through Institution:
Abstract:
This thesis examines the learning experiences of fourteen mature women entrants who successfully completed a Higher National Diploma or degree in a Further Education College in the Outer Hebrides of Scotland. The women were all from non-traditional backgrounds in that they had left school with few or no qualifications and had returned to education later in life. They all had other competing demands on their time such as families, partners and employment and they were the first generation of their family to gain a Higher Education (HE) qualification. The focus of the study is on the one hand to give a voice to the women and to let them talk and interpret their experience of early education and then of college. On the other hand it focuses on what we, as adult educators, can learn from the successful journeys of non-traditional women entrants and how this can inform our professional practice. The students were interviewed using semi structured interviews in order to ascertain how they accessed education as adults, the difficulties they encountered and the coping strategies that helped them successfully complete their studies. Liminality was used as a heuristic tool to examine the women’s educational journeys. Concepts of identity, transformative learning and resilience were explored through their personal narratives. It appears from the findings that gender still adversely affects choice. For women this means less choice of what to do and when to do it. Whilst the women attempt to shape their own biographies anew through education, this is done against a background where their domestic responsibilities still take precedence. Despite this, the supportive and trusting relationship with lecturers contributed to the efficacy of the learning experience, as did the incremental route from FE into HE. For some women the presence of a supportive partner or a significant other appears to have played a part in their success. In terms of professional practice, an understanding of the women’s journeys is essential if we are to put systems in place to effectively support them and to help them stay. Consideration of this may also help in navigating the tenuous and unsettling journeys which the women take in actually getting to college in the first place. Finally, as adult educators, we should be aware and engage more actively with the political process. Awareness of the link between funding and policy is crucial if we are to develop, not only Scotland’s young workforce, but marginalised learners who may not fit in with the current policy priority.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ed.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID: uk.bl.ethos.669444  DOI: Not available
Keywords: H Social Sciences (General) ; LC5201 Education extension. Adult education. Continuing education
Share: