prison education, prison teacher, incarcerated students, prison teacher training


The present study deals with teaching practices in prison education in Slovakia. Attention is paid to secondary school teachers who, at the same time, teach adult prisoners. The aim of the qualitative research conducted was to find out in what ways, in the view of the teachers approached, prison education and school education differ and how they react to the differences. Another objective was to find out whether the teachers feel competent enough to teach prisoners. It was found out that theabsence of teacher training for prison education and the power of the prison regime strongly affect teaching practice. The teachers adjusted the syllabus, the pace and demands placed on the learners to the limited conditions of the prison regime. The authors believe that the present study could shed more light on teaching practices in prison education and help recognize such areas where specific teacher training is needed.

Author Bio

Silvia Lukacova is a university teacher at University of Presov in Presov, Slovakia at the Department of Andragogy. Her research deals with issues of education in prisons, the competencies of prison teachers and the education of adults from marginal groups of the population.

Marek Lukac is a university teacher at University of Presov in Presov, Slovakia at the Department of Andragogy and deals with issues of adult Roma/Romani education from marginalized communities and prison education.

Eduard Lukac is a university teacher at University of Presov in Presov, Slovakia at the Department of Andragogy, dealing with adult education in formal school system and history of adult education in Slovakia.

Ivana Pirohova is a university teacher at University of Presov in Presov, Slovakia at the Department of Andragogy. She deals with issues of individualization in adult education, evaluation of adult education and adult Roma/Romani education from marginalized communities.

Lucia Hartmannova is involved with internal doctoral studies with the Faculty of Arts at University of Presov.

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.


Ashcroft, R. (1999). Training and professional identity for educators in alternative education settings.The Clearing House: A Journal of Educational Strategies, Issues and Ideas, 73(2), 82-85.

Bannon, S. (2014). Why do they do it? Motivations of Educators in Correctional Facilities. Sain Louis University Public Law Review, 33(2), 301-315. Retrieved on 30 March, 2015 from http://www.slu.edu/Documents/law/PLR/Archives/XXXIII-2-14/Bannon_Article_0.pdf.

Bhatti, G. (2010). Learning behind bars: Education in prisons. Teaching and Teacher Education, 26(1), 31-36.

Champion, N. (2012). Brain Cells. Listening to Prisoner Learners. 2nd edition. London: Prisoners’ Education Trust. Retrieved on 15 October, 2016 from https://fbclientprisoners.s3.amazonaws.com/Resources/PET_Brain_Cells_Report_2nd_edition.pdf.

Costelloe, A. (2003). Third level education in Irish prisons: Who participates and why? (Doctoral thesis). Milton Keynes: The Open University.

Denzin, N. K. & Lincoln, Y. S. (2005). Introduction. The Discipline and Practice of Qualitative Research. In N. K. Denzin & Y. S. Lincoln (Eds.), Sage Handbook of Qualitative Research(pp. 1 – 32). Thousand Oaks: Sage.

Diseth, Å., Eikeland, O.-J., Manger, T. & Hetland, H. (2008). Education of prison inmates: course experience, motivation, and learning strategies as indicators of evaluation. Educational Research and Evaluation, 14(3), 201-214. DOI: 10.1080/13803610801956614

Education in Prison. (1990). Strasbourg: Council of Europe. Retrieved on 17 May, 2015 from http://www.epea.org/wp/wp-content/uploads/Education_In_Prison_02.pdf.

Eggleston, C. R. (1991). Correctional education professional development. Journal of Correctional Education, 42(1), 16-22.

Eikeland, O.-J. (2009). Differences and similarities in the Nordic region. In O.-J. Eikeland, T. Manger & A. Asbjørnsen (Eds.), Education in Nordic Prisons. Prisoners’ Educational Backgrounds, Preferences and Motivation(pp. 177-197). Copenhageh: TemaNord, Nordic Council of Ministers.

Elrod, P. &Ryder, R. S. (1999). Juvenile justice: A social, historical and legal perspective.Aspen: Jones & Bartlett Learning.

Foley, R. M. (2001). Academic characteristics of incarcerated youth and correctional educational programs: A literature review. https://doi.org/10.1177/106342660100900405

Freire, P. (1973). Education for critical consciousness. New York: The Seabury Press.

Gee, J. (2006). Education in rural county jails: Need versus opportunity. Journal of Correctional Education, 57(4), 312-325. Retrieved on 20 March, 2015 from http://www.jstor.org/stable/23282805.

Gehring, T. & Wright, R. (2006). The case for reflective practice in alternative and correctional education. Wisdom in Education, (2)1, 1-8. Retrived on 17 December, 2015 from http://scholarworks.lib.csusb.edu/wie/vol2/iss1/9.

Gehring, T., & Puffer, M. (2004).Integral correctional education: Three explanatory essays. San Bernardino: California State University Center for the Study of Correctional Education. Retrieved on 12 January, 2016 from https://coe.csusb.edu/documents/ICEEssays.pdf.

Goffman, E., (1961). Asylums. New York: Doubleday.

Halimi, M. et al. (2017). Learning during imprisonment: Prisoners’ motives to educational participation within a remand prison in Belgium. The Journal of Correctional Education, 68(1), 3-31.

Hall, R., & Killacky, J. (2008). Correctional Education from the Perspective of the Prisoner Student. Journal of Correctional Education,59(4), 301-320. Retrieved on 20 August 2016 from http://www.jstor.org/stable/23282597.

Hawley, J., Murphy I., & Souto-Otero, M. (2012). Survey on prison education and training in Europe. Final report.Birmingham: GHK.

Hawley, J., Murphy I., & Souto-Otero, M. (2013). Prison education and training in Europe. Current state-of-play and challenges. Birmingham: GHK.

Hurkmans, G.,&Gillijns, E. (2012). Mentoring teachers in prison education: Experiences in three correctional facilities in Belgium. Procedia – Social and Behavioral Sciences, 69, 2215-2218.

Irwin, T. (2008). The „inside“ story: Practitioner perspectives on teaching in prison. The Howard Journal, 47(5), 512-528. DOI: 10.1111/j.1468-2311.2008.00536.x

John, R. (2010). Prisoner’s education in 2ndhalf of 20thcentury. Historicall penology, 3, 1-9. Retrieved on 8 May, 2014 from http://www.vscr.cz/client_data/1/user_files/19/file/PDF/Historicka%20penologie/2010/HP3.10.pdf

Jurich, S., Casper, M., & Hull, K. A. (2001). Training correctional educators: A needs assessment study. Journal of Correctional Education, 52(1).

Jussium, L. (1989). Educators Expectations: Self- fulfilling prophecies, perceptual biases, and accuracy. Journal of Personality and Social psychology, 57(3), 469-480.

Koudahl, P. (2009). Denmark. In O.-J. Eikeland, T. Manger & A. Asbjørnsen (Eds.), Education in Nordic Prisons. Prisoners’ Educational Backgrounds, Preferences and Motivation(pp. 41-66). Copenhageh: TemaNord, Nordic Council of Ministers.

Lawton, L. (2012). Preparing teachers for prison schools: A case study of the challenges, attitudes, and motivations of correctional educators (Doctoral Thesis). Available from ProQuest Central; ProQuest Dissertations & Theses A&I. (Record No. 922679893).

Love, G. D. (1991). Consideration of the inmate students’ locus of control for effective instructional leadership. The Journal of Correctional Education, 42(1), 36-39.

Manger et al. (2010). Prison Inmates’ Educational Motives: Are They Pushed or Pulled? Scandinavian Journal of Educational Research, 54(6), 553-547.

Mathur, S., Clark, H., & Schoenfeld, N. (2009). Professional Development: A capacity-building model for juvenile correctional education systems. Journal of Correctional Education,60(2), 164-185. Retrieved on 22 April, 2016 from http://www.jstor.org/stable/23282723.

Messemer, J. E. & Valentine, T. (2012). The development of the correctional education teacher decision-making scale. Journal of Humanities and Social Science, 2(19), pp. 28-40. Retrieved on 12 May, 2014 from http://www.ijhssnet. com/journals/Vol_2_No_19_Special_Issue_October_2012/3.pdf.

Mezirow, J. (2000). Learning as transformation: Critical perspectives on a theory in progress. San Francisco: Jossey Bass.

Moeller, M., Day, S., & Rivera, B. (2004). How is education perceived on the inside? A preliminary study of adult males in a correctional setting. Journal of Correctional Education,55(1), 40-59. Retrieved on 15 May, 2016 from http://www.jstor.org/stable/23292124.

Montross, K. J. & Montross, J. F. (1997). Characteristics of adult incarcerated students: effects on instruction.Journal of Correctional Education, 48(4), 179-186.

Mottern, R. (2013). Teacher-student relationship in court-mandated adult education: A phenomenological study. The Qualitative Report, (18)7, 1-40. Retrieved on 20 April, 2015 from http://nsuworks.nova.edu/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=1555&context=tqr.

Parrotta, K. & Thompson, G. (2011). Sociology of the prison classroom: Marginalized identities and sociological imagination behind bars. In Teaching Sociology, 39(2), 165-178.

Patrie, N. (2017). Learning to be a Prison Educator. Journal of Prison Education and Reentry, 4(1), 17-23.

Průcha, J. (1999). Modern pedagogy. Praha: Portal.

Ravneberg, B. (2003). Undervisning og opplæring i det moderne fengslet. Dannende eller disiplinerende? En undersøkelse av fengselsundervisningen i Bergen og Oslo fengsel [Education in the modern prison: Culture or discipline? A study of prison education in Bergen Prison and Oslo Prison]. (Rapport 5/03). Rokkansenteret, Universitetet i Bergen. Fylkesmannen i Hordaland.

Ravneberg, B. (2005). Dannelse eller disiplinering. Selvforvaltningsstrategier hos elever i fengsel. In T. Langelid & T. Manger (Eds.), Læring bak murene. Bergen: Fagbokforlaget.

Realizácia výskumu v podmienkach ÚVV a ÚVTOS osobami mimo služobného pomeru - doplnená informácia. (2008). Bratislava: Zbor väzenskej a justičnej stráže. Retrieved on 6 June, 2018 from http://www.zvjs.sk/?realizacia-vyskumu

Reis-Jorge, J. M. (2009). Contributions for the training of teachers to teach in prisons: The Portuguese case. In A. Selkirk & M. Tichenor(Eds.), Teacher Education: Policy, Practice and Research (pp. 265-284).New York: Nova Science Publishers Inc.

Rocks, P. D. (2006). Attitudes to participation in education of adult prisoners in HMP Maze (compounds) and HMP Belfast. InternationalJournal of Lifelong Education, 4(1), 69-82.

Rogers, L., Simonot, M., & Nartey, A.(2014). Prison educators: Professionalism against the odds. Retrieved on 12 December, 2014 from https://www.ucu.org.uk/media/6179/Prison-education-professionalism-against-the-odds-Feb-14/pdf/prisoneducators-fullreport_feb14.pdf.

Ross, R. R. & Fabiano, E. A. (1985). Cognitive Skills Program. Ontario: Correctional Service of Canada.

Sayko, Á. (2005). The making of a prison teacher: A phenomenological journey through lived experiences of correctional educators (Doctoral Thesis, University of Maryland, USA). Retrieved on 2 February, 2015 fromhttp://drum.lib.umd.edu/bitstream/1903/2481/1/umi-umd-2354.pdf.

Simmons, A. J., & Branch, L. M. (2015). Have You Paid Your Rent? Servant Leadership in Correctional Education. Journal of Prison Education and Reentry,2(1), 69-72.

Smith, L. G. & Silverman, M. (1994). Functional literacy for jail inmates. The Prison Journal, 74(4), 398-413.

Strauss, L. A., & J. Corbin. (2008). Basics of qualitative research. Techniques and procedures for developing grounded theory (3rd ed.). Thousand Oaks: Sage Publications, Inc.

Svaricek, R., Sedova, K., Sedlacek, M., Novotny, P., Nedbalkova, K., Mikova, M., Janik, T., Kascak, O., & Zounek, J. (2007). Qualitative research in education. Prague: Portal.

Tüllinen, K. (2009). Brief survey of the Estonian prison system and prison education. In O.-J. Eikeland, T. Manger & A. Asbjørnsen (Eds.), Education in Nordic Prisons. Prisoners’ Educational Backgrounds, Preferences and Motivation(pp. 211-213). Copenhageh: TemaNord, Nordic Council of Ministers.

Vyhláška č. 368/2008, ktorou sa vydáva Poriadok výkonu trestu odňatia slobody. Bratislava: Ministerstvo spravodlivosti SR.

Warner, K. (2003). Re-evaluating the Council of Europe work on ‘Education in Prison’. Penological Information Bulletin, no. 25. Strasbourg: Council of Europe.

Warner, K. (2007). Against the narrowing of perspectives: How do we see learning, prisons and prisoners? Journal of Correctional Education, 58(2), 170-183.

Watts, J. H. (2010). Teaching a distance higher education curriculum behind bars: challenges and opportunities.Open Learning: The Journal of Open, Distance and e-Learning, 25(1), 57-64.

Wright, R. (2004). Care as the "Heart" of Prison Teaching. Journal of Correctional Education, 55(3), 191-209.

Wright, R. (2005). Going to teach in prisons: Culture shock. Journal of Correctional Education, 56(1), 19-38. Retrieved on 16 July, 2016 fromhttp://www.jstor.org/stable/23282781.

Wright, R. (2014). Identities, Education and Reentry (Part One of Two): Identities and Performative Spaces. Journal of Prison Education and Reentry, 1(1), 32-41.

Yates, M. D., & Frolander-Ulf, M. (2001). Teaching in prison. Monthly review, 53(3). Retrieved on 28 May, 2016 from http://monthlyreview.org/2001/07/01/teaching-in-prison.

Zákon č. 317/2009 o pedagogických zamestnancoch a odborných zamestnancoch

Zelina, M. (1996). The strategies and methods of child personality development.Bratislava: Iris.