Refugee youth and transition to further education, training, and employment in Australia: Research protocol of a mixed methods study

Tahereh Ziaian, Emily Miller, Helena De Anstiss, Teresa Puvimanasinghe, Maureen Dollard, Adrian Esterman, Helen Barrie, Tamara Stewart-Jones

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Citations (Scopus)
17 Downloads (Pure)

Abstract

Background: Young people with refugee experiences are widely acknowledged as encountering multiple disadvantages that affect their school completion and retention university entry and subsequent employment. This paper discusses the rationale for and protocol of a mixed methods investigation focusing on improving education and employment outcomes among refugee background youth aged 15 to 24 years from three focus regions: the Middle East (Afghanistan, Iran, Iraq, Syria), South Asia (Nepal, Bhutan, Myanmar/Burma, Pakistan) and Africa (Sudan, South Sudan, Liberia, Ethiopia, Somalia, DR Congo). Objective: The rationale of the project is to identify the facilitators and barriers to successful transition from school to further education and employment; investigate participant awareness of support systems available when faced with education and employment difficulties; redress the disadvantages encountered by refugee background youth; and bridge the gap between research, policy, and practice in relation to social inclusion and participation. Methods: The study involves collecting survey data from 600 youth followed by individual interviews with a subset of 60 youth, their parents/primary caregivers, and their teachers. A cross-sectional survey will assess facilitators and barriers to successful transition from school to further education and employment. Individual interviews will provide context-rich data on key issues relevant to education and employment outcomes. Results: The study began in 2016 and is due for completion by the end of 2019. The quantitative survey has been conducted with 635 participants and was closed in March 2019. The qualitative interview stage is ongoing, and the current total in April 2019 is 93 participants including educators, youth, and family members of the youth. Analysis and presentation of results will be available in 2020. Some preliminary findings will be available during the late half of 2019. Conclusions: This project will contribute new and unique insights to knowledge in relation to key factors influencing education and employment outcomes among refugee youth. This research will enable effective planning for the needs of some of Australia's most disadvantaged and marginalized young people, leading to a sustainable improvement in the education and employability of young refugees.

Original languageEnglish
Article numbere12632
Number of pages9
JournalJMIR Research Protocols
Volume8
Issue number7
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Jul 2019
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • Australia
  • Education
  • Employment
  • Mixed-methods
  • Refugee
  • Youth

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