Exploring the asset-based approach with a learner affected by disability and HIV and AIDS

Ryan, Heather (2008-03)

Thesis (MEdPsych (Educational Psychology))--University of Stellenbosch, 2008.


The purpose of this study was to explore the effects of the asset-based approach through life skills facilitation with a learner with disability and affected by HIV and AIDS. The conceptual framework of the study was the HIV and AIDS pandemic, disability and the asset-based approach. I followed a qualitative research approach guided by a transformative paradigm and I used the action research design. I purposefully selected the case (a learner with disability and affected HIV and AIDS) and other participants (mother and community organisations) were identified in consultation with the learner and as the research process developed. Data collection consisted of semistructured interviews, observation, journals, capacity inventory and collage. Data were transcribed verbatim and open-coding were used to identify themes that emerged. Findings that emerged were viz. mobilisation of existing assets enhances and mobilises new assets; presence of positive emotions, agency and ownership were reported. These assets led to incidences of school and community engagement, with the participant as an asset in building, creating and strengthening other people, resources and systems. Previous feelings of dependency, powerlessness and hopelessness were replaced with increased confidence, empowerment and competence. I propose the incorporation of the asset-based approach within the life orientation curriculum and the construct asset-awareness as a more userfriendly term for use in the school context. Asset-awareness refers to the raising and advancement of knowledge about abilities, gifts and assets and the use or application thereof in practice.

Please refer to this item in SUNScholar by using the following persistent URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10019.1/2557
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