Measuring the Academic Achievement and English Language Proficiency of Students at the Secondary Level
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Abstract of the thesis
With the increase in English language learner populations, the extent of ELL programming, and the need to increase retention, it is important to use appropriate assessment tools to determine the need for programming and to measure progress for ELL students. The purpose of this study was to determine the connection between English language proficiency as measured by the Language Assessment Scales (LAS) and academic success measured by grade point average and the Wisconsin Knowledge and Concepts Examination (WKCE).
Further, this research sought to determine the utility of the LAS for measuring growth over time. Participants (n = 29) were enrolled in a north-central Wisconsin school district. Data was collected for 8thand 10″ grade students during the 2002-2003 school year. Separate correlational analyses were computed to determine relations between language proficiency and WKCE and English Language Proficiency 3 grade point average.
Further, dependent t-test analyses were conducted to determine language proficiency growth. Findings reveal acceptable developmental validity on the LAS reading measures, while the writing measures failed to demonstrate acceptable alternate form reliability. Results of language proficiency correlations with measures of GPA and performance on the WKCE revealed mixed results. The overall evidence did not confirm the usefulness of the LAS to predict student achievement as measured by cumulative GPA or the WKCE’s Reading and Language Arts standard scores.
Researcher of the Thesis
- Jessica R. Wille
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