A Case Study of Students in a Developmental Literacy Course when Participating in a Mindfulness-based Intervention
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Success in developmental education contexts requires support not just in cognitive skills, but also in affective areas. One approach showing promise in supporting students in affective areas is mindfulness training. Mindfulness-based interventions (MBIs) can support affective needs and provide coping strategies in general as well as in some educational settings. While the evidence for mindfulness-based interventions providing coping strategies is, as yet, focused mostly on areas outside of developmental education, it may be that mindfulness training can also benefit students placed and enrolled in developmental literacy coursework in college. The purpose of my study was to understand how students enrolled in a developmental literacy course experienced participation in an MBI in terms of mindfulness, self-compassion, affect, and effort. I explored the perceptions of students in a developmental literacy course as they participated in a six-week mindfulness-based stress reduction program. Through the analysis of weekly individual interviews with each participant, researcher observations, weekly journals, and initial- and post-questionnaires of mindfulness, self-compassion, affect, and effort, I discovered the following themes through my analysis of the study: (a) common humanity; (b) coping skills enhancement; (c) heightened interest; (d) reflection for growth; (e) time management; (f) adaptation and contextualization; and (g) change or evolution of understanding. I concluded students in developmental education and those who serve them could benefit from students in developmental education engaging in mindfulness-based interventions.