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ERIC Number: EJ956567
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2012
Pages: 15
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 41
ISSN: ISSN-0950-0782
Informal, Incidental and Ad Hoc: The Information-Seeking and Learning Strategies of Health Care Patients
Papen, Uta
Language and Education, v26 n2 p105-119 2012
When people are ill, they want to know what is happening to them and how they can get better. Current health policies support patients' access to health information and encourage them to take part in decisions regarding their health. But little is known about how patients learn and the difficulties they may encounter in the process. This paper discusses the information-searching and learning strategies of 45 adults living in the north-west of England. At the time of participating in the research, all but two of them were students in adult basic education or English classes. The qualitative interviews revealed a variety of strategies for learning about health and disease, including using the Internet and health books and asking others for support. Learning that was reported was informal and incidental. It was always embedded in the wider activities of dealing with ill-health and treatment. Learning could be constrained by various factors, including the severity of the illness, the hierarchical nature of the health care context and fear. Learning included gaining medical knowledge and learning to engage with specific texts, such as websites. The paper concludes with some comments on the role of adult education classes in supporting learning about health. (Contains 1 table and 1 note.)
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Adult Basic Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: United Kingdom (England)