In-depth interviews were conducted with eight female graduate students between the ages of 50 and 60 attending colleges in the Pacific Northwest, to examine personal experiences of motivation, challenges, benefits, personal growth and transformation through formal education. Participants reported positive experiences and personal outcomes, rewarding intergenerational relationships, and enhanced sense of competence, purpose and future goals. Challenges were reported as manageable, having a personal growth component. An unexpected factor was that most of the research group members were employed in the field of education. Reported experiences corroborate contemporary theories of female middle age as a time of transformation and redefinition of self. Areas for further study include longitudinal and follow-up studies, and other older populations including male students, non-educators, and undergraduates.
|Commitee:||Bankirer, Marcia, Kallemeyn, Maribeth|
|Department:||School of Education|
|School Location:||United States -- Washington|
|Source:||DAI-A 73/09(E), Dissertation Abstracts International|
|Subjects:||Gerontology, Womens studies, Adult education, Higher education|
|Keywords:||Graduate education, Lifelong learning, Older adults, Phenomenological, Postbaccalaureate education, Women|
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