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ERIC Number: ED529678
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2012
Pages: 39
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: 32
ISBN: ISBN-978-1-9219-5592-1
ISSN: N/A
Unfinished Business: Student Perspectives on Disclosure of Mental Illness and Success in VET. Research Report
Venville, Annie; Street, Annette
National Centre for Vocational Education Research (NCVER)
Of all the different types of disability, mental illness can be particularly disruptive to education and training outcomes. In this report, the authors explore the factors contributing to successful course completion for students with a mental illness. The authors especially focus on the role of disclosure and the reasons why students choose to either disclose or not disclose their mental illness. This is important, as rates of disclosure of mental illness by students in the vocational education and training (VET) sector appear to be low, meaning that many students may not be accessing the support potentially available to them. One of the particular strengths of this report is that it presents the perspectives of the students with a mental illness themselves--something that has been largely missing from the research literature. Key messages from this report include: (1) For students, the decision to disclose or not disclose their mental illness is difficult. They struggle to decide whether it is better to disclose or not; (2) Students spoke of the fear of stigma, prejudice and rejection as reasons for not disclosing their mental illness. However, for most students in the study, the desire not to fail--yet again--was the main reason for choosing to disclose their illness; and (3) Students and staff differed greatly in their views on disclosure. Most staff members expected students to disclose their illness. Reluctance to seek assistance was considered as being unwilling to take responsibility for their education. An obvious strategy to overcome an unwillingness to disclose mental illness is the provision of support and reasonable adjustment for all students, not merely those with an illness. But this would require significant resources. (Contains 8 tables.) [For the support document, "Unfinished Business: Student Perspectives on Disclosure of Mental Illness and Success in VET--Support Document," see ED529677.]
National Centre for Vocational Education Research Ltd. P.O. Box 8288, Stational Arcade, Adelaide, SA 5000, Australia. Tel: +61-8-230-8400; Fax: +61-8-212-3436; e-mail: ncver@ncver.edu.au; Web site: http://www.ncver.edu.au
Publication Type: Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: Australian Department of Education, Employment and Workplace Relations
Authoring Institution: National Centre for Vocational Education Research
Identifiers - Location: Australia