Degree

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)

Department

College of Human Sciences and Education

Document Type

Dissertation

Abstract

The purpose of this study was to examine the problem of instructing English learners in a rural Louisiana district. The following questions guided this study: (1) How do the teachers perceive their pre-service and in-service training for English learners?, (2) How do the teachers perceive their ability to implement culturally responsive pedagogical practices for English learners?, (3) How do the teachers perceive the district’s approach to tangible, informational, and emotional supports for English learners?, and (4) What are the teachers’ perceptions, if any, of sociocultural inequities faced by English learners? And how, if any, do these sociocultural inequities affect the quality of education for English learners? Semi-structured interviews were conducted with five participants in “Woodland Parish,” representing 1/3 of the high school English teachers in the district. Instructional artifacts were collected to establish internal validity.

Analysis of the data indicated an overall lack of ESL training as well as support, a misunderstanding of best practices for English learners, and a racially complex perspective on cultural integration. This study indicated that little progress has been made to recognize English learners and to provide tools for them to succeed in Woodland Parish. Additionally, teachers in this district still have to overcome their social, cultural, and institutional barriers in order to establish quality education for their ESL population.

Committee Chair

Barrera, Estanislado IV

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