Youthreach graduate’s perspective on the 3rd level experience

Sheridan, Carl (2018) Youthreach graduate’s perspective on the 3rd level experience.


This study investigates the experiences of current and former Youthreach students as they progress from the Youthreach programme to further/higher education. Though the study attempts to focus primarily on the pathways for progression to education rather than employment this study also involves an exploration of other progression pathways.

The research design is informed by a post-positivist paradigm within the Qualitative domain. A Case Study approach was chosen as the most appropriate method for this investigation. Data tools included questionnaires and semi-structured interviews and extant data. These data collections endeavour to capture the real-life story through the voices of current and former students.

The literature review focusses on but is not limited to early school leaving, alternative education routes and programmes and urban educational disadvantage. A significant discussion in the thesis looks at the innovative and holistic approaches adopted by teachers in the Youthreach programme.

The findings highlight the positive aspects of the Youthreach programme for the students, and the challenges and barriers they encountered after completing the programme in choosing and pursuing their chosen pathway in education or employment. The thesis concludes with recommendations for Youthreach and policy makers in regards to improvements that Youthreach centres can implement which may support students progressing to further/higher education.

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