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Touch-Learn Research - Baby Massage 

Published April 2012

The Student Experience:

Touch-Learn Infant Massage Teacher Training Programme


pie-chartRecently a small study was undertaken by Touch-Learn, in conjunction with Staffordshire University, to look at the student experience with Touch-Learn and the rate of retention on our infant massage programmes compared with other HE programmes of study.


The project looked at the delivery of 13 courses across the UK by five separate trainers. We were particularly interested in the extent of the support that we offer; how ma ny students completed on time, and what factors were responsible for those completing late or not at all and lastly whether being funded or self-funded made a difference to student commitment.


Primary research was carried out using the Touch-Learn database and student questionnaires and interviews with a 59% response rate. Thank you to those of you who took the time to answer the questions.


Secondary research identified and compared factors influencing student withdrawal in other sectors, such as work-based Foundation degrees.


The results of the study are extremely encouraging and demonstrate that the overall learning experience of students on the Touch-Learn Infant Massage Teacher Training programme, whether completing on time, slightly later than planned or not at all is very good indeed.


From the study, only 6.94% of students who enrolled on the Touch-Learn Infant Massage Teacher Training programme did not complete the course. This is extremely low compared with students on comparable work-based learning Foundation Degrees, where the noncompletion rate in 2006 was 12%. This is an excellent achievement.


Those who did not complete the programme attributed this to work, personal and health re asons and not to any aspect of the programme. Those who completed later than the sixteen week programme had many reasons, but felt comfortable overall with the standard length of the programme, apart from some on in-house courses where the number of parents to teach was low. We endeavour to address this in the future. Sixty per cent of the respondents rated their tutorial support as ‘excellent’. Retention rates for those students that were funded and self-funded were almost identical showing commitment from students regardless of their funding. Again, excellent outcomes.

Anita Epple


Epple, A. (2012) Student retention on an Infant Massage Teacher Training Programme, Innovative Practice in Higher Education, Vol 1, No 2 Staffordshire University, April 2012

Other Research:

 The Touch Research Institute, Miami

 The Cochrane Review for Infant Massage


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