EVALUATION OF QTEL IN 52 CALIFORNIA MIDDLE SCHOOLS

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Most adolescent English language learners are in classrooms where native English speakers are in the majority. QTEL, with its emphasis on scaffolding instruction for English language learners, focuses on increasing academic achievement for all students, including those whose first language is English. An experimental research study in 52 California middle schools examined the efficacy of QTEL professional development for ESL and ELA teachers, collaborative learning communities, and classroom coaching for a subset of teachers in each treatment school, for increasing teacher expertise and student outcomes.

The study, funded by the U.S. Department of Education through its Regional Educational Laboratory Program (specifically, REL West), was conducted by Berkeley Policy Associates, an independent research agency. Schools in three California counties with large populations of English language learners — San Diego, San Bernardino, and Riverside — participated in a three-year QTEL intervention and the evaluation of its effectiveness during the 2007/08, 2008/09, and 2009/10 school years.

The study was designed to answer the following research questions:

  • What is QTEL’s impact on the pedagogical content knowledge and classroom practices of participating teachers?

  • How does QTEL affect student-teacher interaction in the classroom and how do these impacts vary between English language learners and non-English language learners?

  • What is QTEL’s impact on student performance on state-referenced tests in a variety of subjects? How do these impacts vary between English language learners and non-English language learners?

  • What is QTEL’s impact on other student outcomes including attendance, grades, and grade promotion?

To read about confirmatory and exploratory results of the study, follow the link to the Executive Summary (full report upon request).

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