High School Course-Taking Patterns for English Language Learners: A Case Study from California. Research BriefReport as inadecuate




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National High School Center

In this research brief, the authors examine transcript data from 54 high schools in California to look at the specific course-taking patterns of English language learners (ELLs). They investigate the patterns by which ELLs complete 9th grade in English and mathematics and how that links to the accumulation of a comprehensive sequence of rigorous courses by the time the ELLs are high school seniors. By examining the course names in the transcript file, they were able to identify the courses that were designed for ELLs. These courses were labeled specifically as "EL" (English language), "ELL," "ELD" (English language development), "ESL" (English as a second language), "Sheltered" (integration of native language and content instruction), and "SDAIE" (Specially Designed Academic Instruction in English). The findings in this study suggest that students have a better chance of completing the CSU entrance requirements if they are identified early as being English language learners. The fact that English language learners (late ID) are only about 39% as likely as English language learners (early ID) to complete CSU entrance requirements suggests that early identification is highly important. In either case, English language learners, regardless of when they are identified, show considerable difficulty fulfilling CSU entrance requirements when compared to non-English learners. The findings here highlight this point, suggesting that more needs to be done to support English language learners' chances of completing college entrance requirements by the end of 12th grade. (Contains 10 tables, 6 figures and 1 footnote.)

Descriptors: Course Selection (Students), Second Language Learning, English (Second Language), English, Academic Records, Mathematics Education, English Instruction, Required Courses, Admission Criteria, College Admission

National High School Center. American Institutes for Research, 1000 Thomas Jefferson Street NW, Washington, DC 20007. Tel: 800-634-0503; Fax: 202-403-5875; e-mail: helpfor[at]betterhighschools.org; Web site: http://www.betterhighschools.org





Author: Finkelstein, Neal; Huang, Min; Fong, Anthony

Source: https://eric.ed.gov/?q=a&ft=on&ff1=dtySince_1992&pg=4322&id=ED507598



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