Date of Award


Document Type



Edith Cowan University

Degree Name

Master of Education


Faculty of Education

First Supervisor

Dr Marion Milton


The purpose of this study is to define and delineate the factors which influence the decision by non-English speaking background migrant Muslim women to access or not access their eligibility for English language tuition, as set out by current policies governing the eligibility of migrants to participate in Adult Migrant Education programs. As such, the study is of particular interest to both key informants: teachers, community workers, coordinators, and to the target population themselves-Migrant Muslim women. It is also of benefit to those who are concerned with implementing language programs as it will provide them with an understanding of the issues facing Muslim women that may prevent them from accessing such classes. It is also of particular interest because it delves into and explores an• area where much speculation has taken place, but where little research of significance has been directed. The target population is defined as adult (over age 16) Muslim women from a non-English speaking background who are currently residing in the Perth metropolitan area. Two groups within this target population have been included in the study, the first being those women who have accessed migrant language tuition in a formal class setting (excluding those who have accessed the home tutor scheme). The second being those women who have not, with the objective of drawing a typology of the kind of Muslim women accessing classes-age, country of birth, family, socio-economic status, perceived need to learn English, level of education and aspirations and other relevant variables that were brought to light through the research process. Data was collected using both quantitative and qualitative research methods which involved the analysis of figures pertaining to the numbers of women from Muslim countries of birth who have accessed English language classes through the Adult Migrant Education Program in order to arrive at conclusions about the relative absence of Muslim women in these programs. Qualitative data was collected using a structured interview with twenty three women from the target population as well as interviews with three key informants. The purpose of the key informant interviews was to gain an understanding of the external factors accessibility, availability of information and practical considerations such as child care transport and provision of special arrangements that may affect the decision or the ability of Muslim women to attend classes.

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