ERIC Number: ED387674
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1995-Mar-10
Motivations for Learning: Voices of Women Welfare Reform Participants. NCAL Brief.
Wikelund, Karen Reed
Twenty-seven female welfare recipients who had been forced to enroll in a career and life planning class or lose their welfare benefits were observed in class for 1 month in 1972. Five to 6 months after the class, 15 of the women were interviewed in informal small group and one-on-one conversations and formal open-ended individual interviews focusing on their learning experiences, activities since the class, progress toward their identified goals, previous educational history and perception of skills, plans for the future, and reasons for being on welfare. Among the key findings of the study were the following: (1) female welfare recipients required to participate in welfare reform educational programs soon discovered strong personal motivations to continue their literacy training; (2) participation in the education program improved the female welfare recipients' self-esteem, perceptions of their skills, interest in future education, and views of their job prospects; and (3) the welfare reform educational program worked because it focused on developing and changing the ways in which the participants perceived themselves and their educational opportunities. It was concluded that requiring welfare recipients to return to school is a potentially powerful tool for improving their job prospects and thereby reducing their dependence on public assistance. (MN)
Descriptors: Adult Basic Education, Attitude Change, Career Education, Education Work Relationship, Educational Attainment, Educational Attitudes, Individual Characteristics, Learning Motivation, Mothers, Outcomes of Education, Participant Characteristics, Participant Satisfaction, Participation, Welfare Recipients, Welfare Reform, Womens Education
Publication Type: Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: Office of Educational Research and Improvement (ED), Washington, DC.
Authoring Institution: National Center on Adult Literacy, Philadelphia, PA.
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A
Note: For the full report, see ED 364 748.