Young Prisoners’ Experiences of the Positive Factors of Small Group Teaching during Their Basic Education – Toward the Pedagogy of Preventing Social Exclusion

Tanja Äärelä, Kaarina Määttä, Satu Uusiautti


In this study, young prisoners’ school memories were studied. The purpose of the study was to find out if small group teaching could help children in danger of exclusion. The following research questions were set for this study: (1) What was the transition process to small group teaching like according to the young prisoners’ descriptions?; and (2) How did the small group teaching arrangement support school work according to the young prisoners’ descriptions? Narratives of their school time from twenty-nine young prisoners, aged 17-21, from two prisons in northern Finland were obtained through interviews. Small group teaching had represented a change toward better school satisfaction and well-being to all those who had been moved to such a group. The young prisoners’ interviews pointed out several elements that make a successful small group teaching. These positively-perceived factors were communality and peer group, flexible and functional study methods, and caring, encouraging teachers. We combine the elements here as the pedagogy of preventing social exclusion (PPSE), which is introduced as the conclusion of this study. 

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Journal of Studies in Education ISSN 2162-6952


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