Date

5-2016

Department

School of Education

Degree

Doctor of Education (EdD)

Chair

Rebecca R. Burton

Keywords

Disabled Student Veterans, Reintegration, Social Support, Student Veterans, Transition, Women in Military

Disciplines

Curriculum and Social Inquiry | Disability and Equity in Education | Education | Educational Assessment, Evaluation, and Research | Educational Psychology | Higher Education | Other Education

Abstract

The purpose of this qualitative transcendental phenomenological study was to explore and describe the lived experiences of female student veterans with disabilities entering higher education during reintegration in order to improve programs, services, and support available to female student veterans with disabilities. A screening questionnaire, interviews, a focus group, and journals were used to collect data. Participants consisted of 11 female student veterans with disabilities who were purposively selected using criterion, snowball, and maximum variation sampling. The central research question was: What are the transition experiences of female student veterans with disabilities entering college during reintegration into society? Four sub-questions were also addressed. Data analyses were conducted using Moustakas’ (1994) recommendations of a transcendental phenomenological study, and five themes were identified. Textural and structural descriptions were written and integrated into the composite description to reveal the essence of participants’ experiences. Findings served to inform post-secondary institutions of the diverse needs of female student veterans with disabilities so they can better serve them, increase student veterans’ perseverance and academic success, and provide a smoother reintegration for all student veterans with disabilities.