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English Language Learners (ELLs) can be misidentified as students with special needs. Teachers often watch these students struggle in school and assume they have a cognitive delay, when in reality; they may just be struggling with their language delay. To be identified as needing special education services, these students undergo assessments to test their abilities. These assessments were created for students who speak English. Studies have shown that “Familiarity with Standard English accounts for more than 50% of the total test variance on IQ and achievement test measures for fourth graders and 60% to 90% of the variance for seventh graders” (Abedi, 2002). Therefore, ELLs are put at a further disadvantage during the testing period. If placed in a special education program, the student rarely receives the language instruction needed. The current structure creates an environment where ELLs can easily be misplaced into special education programs where they will continue to fall further behind in their education. To prevent this problem, pre-service teachers need to gain experience with ELLs so that they can give them the instruction and support they need. Not all pre-service teachers have access to classrooms with ELLs. In order to try to replicate this experience, instructors turn to video case studies that show pre-service teachers authentic footage, assessments, and class work of an ELL. The goal of this research is to determine the effects of video case studies on pre-service teachers, and what questions were generated as a result of the in class clinical experience.

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Project Designation

Honors Thesis

Primary Advisor

Stephen B. Richards

Primary Advisor's Department

Teacher Education


Stander Symposium poster


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