The special issue Keeping Connected: Identity, Social Connection and Education for Young People opens with a paper that discusses the research design and overview of a three-year project by a Melbourne (Australia)-based multi-disciplinary team. Over 2007–2009, the Keeping Connected team of 10 researchers investigated the lives of adolescents with ongoing health conditions. The project centrally is developed by the young people's perspectives, their identity and wellbeing, relationships with others and engagement within changing contexts and their altered opportunities in the world. The research design includes image production underpinned by visual methods and a narrative-informed approach to interview and interpretation of images. The study, which crosses the health and education interface, set out to highlight differences of perspectives adopted by 31 young people, their families and the professional groups, such as teachers and health professionals. The special issue discusses key project findings and contributes a body of scholarship that expands our knowledge of evidence-based research across the education and health interface. The longitudinal study highlighted two themes of importance for education, and poorly catered for in current policies and guidelines: that the situation of these young people needs to be addressed by schools as a process over time (including prospectively); and that the young people's identity is strongly marked by a desire to be seen and treated as ‘normal’ combined with an awareness of being vulnerable.
Field of Research
130313 Teacher Education and Professional Development of Educators
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