Date of Award


Document Type



Edith Cowan University

Degree Name

Master of Social Science


Faculty of Community Services, Education and Social Sciences

First Supervisor

Dr Victoria Banham


The purpose of this study is to explore the mentoring process, specifically the interactions between mentor and mentee in the context of an adolescent mentor program. The data was gathered through in depth interviews with two mentors and feedback sessions from nineteen mentee participants who were involved in a group mentoring program for young people aged 14-16 years. Several adolescent programs, conducted at local high schools, were included in the study. A qualitative methodology of constructivist hermeneutics was utilised to examine the data and link it to the literature related to the study question. The findings indicated that what occurs during the process of mentoring is multi factorial, complex and diverse. Mentoring takes place in a reciprocal way that is impacted by layered contexts. New data was gathered pertaining to the utility of several theoretical constructs that might help to explain how mentoring occurs. Implications for professionals wishing to work as mentors or wishing to implement mentoring programs are examined in this study. These include the need to recognize and comprehend mentor qualities and styles vis a vis various theoretical constructs such as role modelling, identification and inter subjectivity. Cultural, gender and developmental issues related to the process of mentoring are examined. Little research has been identified that brings the narratives of both mentor and mentee together in one study comparatively analysing them. In this regard the present study can be seen as unique and contributing something new to the literature on mentoring.