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Duelling identities in refugees learning through open,online higher education

Brunton, James orcid logoORCID: 0000-0001-7223-0524, Farrell, Orna orcid logoORCID: 0000-0001-9519-2380, Costello, Eamon orcid logoORCID: 0000-0002-2775-6006, Delaney, Lorraine orcid logoORCID: 0000-0003-2422-903X, Foley, Colum and Brown, Mark orcid logoORCID: 0000-0002-7927-6717 (2019) Duelling identities in refugees learning through open,online higher education. Open Praxis, 11 (4). ISSN 2304-070X

This paper reports on a qualitative study of the transition experiences of refugees studying through open and online higher education. Online, open education programmes have considerable potential to provide flexible access to education for refugees, who are not well represented within higher education. As part of a wider University of Sanctuary initiative, interview data from six Ireland-based refugees was analysed using a data-led, qualitative methodological framework grounded in discursive psychology. Findings indicate that participants’ transition narratives are typical in many ways as they form student identities while managing their existing identities and begin to feel, or not, that they belong. Participants constructed a stark divide between two duelling identities, between their identity as a refugee and their new identity as an online learner. Identification with the university was emphasised in contrast to disidentification with the ‘asylum world’. These findings indicate that a strategically connected approach to supporting refugees transition into higher education can impact positively on these students.
Item Type:Article (Published)
Subjects:Social Sciences > Adult education
Social Sciences > Distance education
Social Sciences > Education
Social Sciences > Educational technology
Social Sciences > Migration
Social Sciences > Identity
DCU Faculties and Centres:DCU Faculties and Schools > NIDL (National Institute for Digital Learning)
Official URL:http://dx.doi.org/10.5944/openpraxis.11.4.1018
Copyright Information:Open access, CC-BY
ID Code:24330
Deposited On:15 Apr 2020 10:26 by Orna Farrell . Last Modified 13 Apr 2021 14:31

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