Lifelong learning and becoming a mother: Evaluation of the Young Parents Program

Louise Wightman, Beverley Moriarty

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

3 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

A qualitative casestudy was used to evaluate the Young Parents Program, which was devised to meet theinformal learning needs of young mothers aged between 15 and 25 years. A total ofeight mothers completed a survey and four of them also participated in a focus groupinterview to provide more in depth responses. The results indicate that the content ofthe programme provided relevant information that met the informal learning needs ofthe participants. The delivery of the programme helped participants to make connectionswith other young mothers in similar circumstances. The findings imply thatinformal learning programmes that respond well to the immediate needs of youngmothers have the potential to prevent young mothers from becoming socially isolated.Young mothers who become engrossed in their own problems without access to relevantinformal learning may fail to undertake formal learning opportunities that mightbe available in the future.The purpose of this research was to identify how lifelong learning has the potential toaccommodate the changed circumstances and future needs of women who becomemothers as teenagers. The research drew on the previously separate theories of lifelonglearning and becoming a mother to frame this initial study. A qualitative casestudy was used to evaluate the Young Parents Program, which was devised to meet theinformal learning needs of young mothers aged between 15 and 25 years. A total of eight mothers completed a survey and four of them also participated in a focus groupinterview to provide more in depth responses. The results indicate that the content ofthe programme provided relevant information that met the informal learning needs ofthe participants. The delivery of the programme helped participants to make connectionswith other young mothers in similar circumstances. The findings imply thatThe purpose of this research was to identify how lifelong learning has the potential toaccommodate the changed circumstances and future needs of women who becomemothers as teenagers. The research drew on the previously separate theories of lifelonglearning and becoming a mother to frame this initial study.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)555-567
Number of pages13
JournalInternational Journal of Lifelong Education
Volume31
Issue number5
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2012

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