Graduate Research Papers


Open Access Graduate Research Paper


In the United States, more and more multi-ethnic linguistic populations will be entering school systems: The increasing need for helping these students from other cultures who know little or no English has become more and more apparent. Educators should modify their curricula and/or teaching strategies to improve English language learners (ELLs) ability in the use of English. Teachers help ELLs connect form (word) and meaning (concepts) and tie these to prior knowledge by providing understandable meaning, that is comprehensible input. Comprehensible input applies new words/sentences to old concepts. Vocabulary learning usually grows out of social interaction and talking personally to people, or basic interpersonal communication skills (BICS). When ELLs have more opportunities to have social interaction in class using their new language, they reinforce what they are learning and become more confident. When ELLs socially interact with classmates, teachers, school staff, janitors, and others, they can develop cognitive academic language proficiency (CALP). Two instructional models (the cooperative learning model and inquiry model) work very well to help ELLs learn English because the models incorporate comprehensible input; BICS, and CALP. It is important for teachers to know how to use comprehensible input to help ELLs learn English. As important, teachers need to know how to direct classmates, classroom aides, or volunteer parents, etc. to work with ELLs on assignments using comprehensible input.

Year of Submission


Degree Name

Master of Arts in Education


Department of Curriculum and Instruction


Division of Elementary Education

First Advisor

Deborah Tidwell

Second Advisor

Loretta Kuse


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Date Original


Object Description

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