ERIC Number: EJ1125008
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2016-Dec
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 118
Leveled and Exclusionary Tracking: English Learners' Access to Academic Content in Middle School
Umansky, Ilana M.
American Educational Research Journal, v53 n6 p1792-1833 Dec 2016
This study examines the characteristics and determinants of English learners' (ELs') access to academic content in middle school (Grades 6-8). Following 10 years of data from a large urban school district in California, I identify two predominant characteristics of EL access to content: leveled tracking in which ELs are overrepresented in lower level classes and underrepresented in upper level classes and exclusionary tracking in which ELs are excluded from core academic content area classes, particularly English language arts. Using regression analysis and two regression discontinuity designs, I find evidence that ELs' access to content is limited by a constellation of factors, including prior academic achievement, institutional constraints, English proficiency level, and direct effects of EL classification. This study contributes to understanding of the experiences and opportunities of students learning English as well as theory regarding educational tracking.
Descriptors: English, Language Arts, Course Content, Language Proficiency, Track System (Education), Classification, Regression (Statistics), Middle School Students, Urban Schools, School Districts, Academic Achievement, English Language Learners, Longitudinal Studies, Educational Theories, Least Squares Statistics
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