Date of Conferral

2015

Degree

Doctor of Education (Ed.D.)

School

Education

Advisor

Paul Englesberg

Abstract

Most Kenyan high school dropouts do not have a school reentry option, and without a high school diploma, they lack access to tertiary or higher education institutions for training and career development. This case study was an investigation of how an adult learning center in Kenya educated high school dropouts and helped them to gain access to vocational training or higher education. The research questions addressed the pedagogy, learning experiences, and curriculum of the Baraka Adult Learning Center (BALC) and also focused on how the BALC met studentsâ?? aspirations, needs, and goals based on the perceptions of teachers and adult learners. The conceptual framework was based on liberatory education theory, transformative learning theory, and andragogy. Data collected from classroom observation

s, curriculum review, and interviews with 9 current students, 3 former students, 5 teachers, and the principal were analyzed inductively by sorting and coding to generate emergent themes. The results of the study indicated that instructors followed the regular high school curriculum with little adaptation and lacked training about teaching adult learners and self-directed learning approaches. The adult learners perceived returning to school as getting a second chance. A professional development project for BALC instructors was developed to address some of the needs identified in the study. This training could have an impact on the adult learners by better assisting them to gain access to vocational training and higher education.

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