What are the critical barriers to #English language learning for #Afghan#refugee women in #Australia? Research by Sharifan and colleagues conducted interviews and focus group discussions with Afghan refugee women. They found that although the participants received formal support from the Australian Government, most still struggled to learn English effectively. A thematic analysis of the interview responses revealed that the significant barriers to English acquisition were pedagogical and sociocultural and included issues of lack of #selfesteem and de-#motivation.
Migrating, learning to speak a new language, and adapting to a new culture, can be immensely challenging experiences for refugees. Especially in Australia, there are still many women with little or no literacy or formal educational background, which is tough since learning to speak the language is essential to work and settle into a new society. These findings suggest that language acquisition represents a significant challenge for refugees in general, women in particular, successfully integrating into Australian society.
This study's findings can inform language support programs for refugee women, particularly when considering the sociocultural, emotional, and educational needs of female refugees learning English and the need for provisions such as childcare to facilitate their participation in language learning classes. As participants stated, English learning was always a second or last priority, as better services for mothers, such as child care during a lesson, seem more important to concentrate on learning a new #language.