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Adolescent`s experience of themselves and their stay in a juvenile correctional facility

Tadeja Mašič (2016) Adolescent`s experience of themselves and their stay in a juvenile correctional facility. Diploma thesis.

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    The graduation thesis discusses the experiences of children and adolescents with emotional and behavioural problems who have been placed in a juvenile correctional facility due to various life-threatening factors. One area of interest was the way the adolescents experience themselves and living in a juvenile correctional facility, and how are they dealing with their living situation. The theoretical part of the thesis provides an introduction into adolescence, one of the most turbulent and crisis-oriented stages in development of an individual. During this period, adolescents are faced with new challenges, they learn to adopt new roles, and are prepared for the transition into self-sufficient adulthood. While some are able to successfully cope and develop, others are affected by a myriad of factors both from immediate and wider environment that is limiting and impeding their development. Various classifications and characteristics of adolescence are introduced that serve as a guide for understanding the spectrum of diverse behavioural and emotional traits of adolescents who are treated and guided as people who are experiencing behavioural and emotional problems. The latter help to establish a bridge between diagnostics, triage, development course, and psychosocial support which needs to be interdisciplinary and include all areas of life. The thesis also introduces the factors in the development of an individual, including family as the most important factor and a child's basic cell of life. Besides family, the development of emotional and behavioural problems is also affected by personal traits, peers, and society at large. The empirical part of the thesis consists of a qualitative study that was based on data acquired from self-assessments of selected adolescents, pertaining to the way they experience themselves and living in a juvenile correctional facility. Furthermore, four interviews with adolescents of different ages living in a juvenile correctional facility were carried out; they provided their views on their living situations. When discussing children and adolescents living in a juvenile correctional facility, it is important they are actively included as well. The study included all areas of their lives, from childhood to present life. The data gathered from the interviews were supplemented with the data from personal records. It was determined that putting an adolescent in a juvenile correctional facility had been a significant turning point in their lives. They experienced it as very turbulent. At first, they had difficulties coping with the situation; however, later on they realized that having been put in a juvenile correctional facility also meant a beginning of a new and better life. The facility provided them with a safe and stable environment where they were able to sort out their lives, acquire social skills, improve on their behaviour, and develop strategies for coping with crises. Among the negative aspects of living in a juvenile correctional facility, they listed its location in a rural area, the prohibited use of mobile phones, and too many study lessons. Living in a juvenile correctional facility gave them good support to start anew. On the other hand, how will they face life’s challenges in the future depends also on the support and stability that they can get both from themselves and the environment. In conclusion, self-presentations or self-assessments of children are of significant help when trying to understand their side of the experience. By not including the emotional elements, planning childhood education and discussing adolescents is superficial at best.

    Item Type: Thesis (Diploma thesis)
    Keywords: adolescence, emotional and behavioural problems, juvenile correctional facility, experiences of children and adolescents
    Number of Pages: 169
    Language of Content: Slovenian
    Mentor / Comentors:
    Mentor / ComentorsIDFunction
    izr. prof. dr. Alenka KoboltMentor
    Link to COBISS: http://www.cobiss.si/scripts/cobiss?command=search&base=50126&select=(ID=11289929)
    Institution: University of Ljubljana
    Department: Faculty of Education
    Item ID: 4045
    Date Deposited: 07 Nov 2016 16:36
    Last Modified: 07 Nov 2016 16:36
    URI: http://pefprints.pef.uni-lj.si/id/eprint/4045

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