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Responding to the needs of students who are carers on an undergraduate occupational therapy programme at one UK university

Hussain, Z, Higginson, M, Pickering, V and Percy, DF 2015, 'Responding to the needs of students who are carers on an undergraduate occupational therapy programme at one UK university' , Student Engagement and Experience Journal, 4 (1) , pp. 1-18.

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Abstract

The purpose of the study was to explore the experiences of students on an undergraduate occupational therapy degree programme who have caring responsibilities. It was a mixed methods study, including a questionnaire to identify students who are carers, follow-up focus groups and the University’s internal student records database to obtain absence and attainment data. There were no significant differences in absence rates for carers and non-carers. However attainment was significantly lower for carers. Carers reported having fees paid by the NHS as an important choice factor for higher education. Carers’ main concerns were timetabling, finances, support after exam failures, understanding from academic staff and not feeling part of the wider university community. Most carers had seriously considered leaving the programme during their studies and attrition rates were proportionally higher for students who were carers. Education providers must recognise the needs of mature students and provide inclusive environments. The findings have led to programme, policy and institutional level action. Education providers must recognise the needs of mature students and provide inclusive environments. The NHS must be reflective of the community it serves and those responsible for delivering health professional programmes have a duty to recruit and retain a diverse student population.

Item Type: Article
Themes: Health and Wellbeing
Schools: Schools > Salford Business School
Journal or Publication Title: Student Engagement and Experience Journal
Publisher: Sheffield Hallam University
Refereed: Yes
ISSN: 2047-9476
Related URLs:
Funders: University of Liverpool
Depositing User: Professor D. F. Percy
Date Deposited: 31 Jul 2015 17:10
Last Modified: 05 Apr 2016 19:30
URI: http://usir.salford.ac.uk/id/eprint/35763

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