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Dissertation/Thesis Abstract

Learning as it relates to addiction recovery: A case study of the learning experiences of men in a faith-based addiction recovery program
by Voigt, Thomas J.K., Jr., Ed.D., Northern Illinois University, 2013, 131; 3611362
Abstract (Summary)

This case study is about learning as it relates to addiction recovery within the Men's Ministry (a pseudonym) program at an urban, faith-based mission, hereafter referred to as WCM (an acronym). The program is free and long-term residential. Its purpose is to be a "life transformation ministry for troubled men whose lives are out of control as a result of drugs, alcohol or some other destructive behavior pattern."

The study examines the described experiences of 13 WCM residents from the perspectives of two researchers: Cranton and DiClemente. Cranton's work explains change through adult learning, which can be transformative. DiClemente's work describes steps of change of becoming addicted and of recovering from addiction.

At my request, the chaplain at WCM selected Men's Ministry residents willing to share their life experiences as part of this study. During three 90-minute interviews based on Seidman's interview model, 13 residents shared their experiences before WCM in the first interview, their experiences at WCM in the second interview, and reflections on the first two interviews in the third interview.

The research questions that guided the study were (a)-How did the subjects in this faith-based addiction recovery program describe their own learning? and (b)-What were the subjects' perceptions of changes they experienced while in this faith-based addiction recovery program?

Participants' descriptions resulted in four conclusions: Multiple formal activities affected each participant; informal learning occurred throughout the WCM facility; participants' descriptions of changes at WCM resulted in recognition of changes throughout their prior lives; there was no single description by participants of a change, or a motive for change, at WCM.

Implications for future research include conducting longitudinal studies of this program's graduates, conducting studies with different participants to compare to this study, analyzing subsets of the data obtained, determining the indicated key programmatic elements, conducting studies about nonfaith-based residential substance addiction recovery programs to compare to this study.

Implications for practice include seeking adult educator's advice about including adult learning principles in substance addiction recovery, using adult educators as instructors in substance addiction recovery, and co-ordinating all practice activities with research findings.

Indexing (document details)
Advisor: Orem, Richard
Commitee: O'Neil, Linda, Rose, Amy
School: Northern Illinois University
Department: Counseling, Adult and Higher Education
School Location: United States -- Illinois
Source: DAI-A 75/05(E), Dissertation Abstracts International
Subjects: Adult education, Clinical psychology
Keywords: Addiction recovery, Faith-based programs, Recovery, Residential treatment
Publication Number: 3611362
ISBN: 978-1-303-72018-5
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