Journal of Cancer Education

, Volume 26, Issue 1, pp 170–174 | Cite as

Challenges of Recruiting ESL Immigrants into Cancer Education Studies: Reflections from Practice Notes



Changing population demographics and immigration patterns have resulted in increasing numbers of Canadians who report speaking a language other than French or English. Inclusion of English-as-a-second-language (ESL) immigrants in cancer education research is critical if disparities in access and use of preventive health care services are to be addressed. This article describes the challenges experienced recruiting and interviewing older ESL immigrant women for a colon cancer prevention study. Factors influencing the recruitment and interview of ESL immigrant women were identified through regular team meetings, interviews, and reflective practice notes. Issues included the importance of community contacts, language barriers, and the motivations of the women for participating. Recommendations for recruitment and inclusion of ESL immigrants in cancer education research are provided.


Reflective practice Immigrants English-as-a-second language Cancer prevention 


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Copyright information

© Springer 2010

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Health Studies and GerontologyUniversity of WaterlooWaterlooCanada
  2. 2.Department of Health Studies and Gerontology, Faculty of Applied Health SciencesUniversity of WaterlooWaterlooCanada

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