Honors College Thesis


ESOL teachers' experiences reclassifying English learner students with disabilities Public Deposited

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  • This qualitative study on the experiences of English Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL) educators in the process of reclassifying English Learner Students with Disabilities (ELSWDs) from English Language Development (ELD) services in Oregon sought the answers to two questions: (1) Who is making reclassification decisions? and (2) How are reclassification decisions made on behalf of ELSWDs? Participants in this study included five teachers and one language program coordinator (LPC) from three Oregon school districts. Data was collected using in-depth, semi-structured interviews (Rubin & Rubin, 2012) and analyzed using a grounded theory approach (Charmaz, 2014). Findings suggest that ESOL teachers assumed considerable responsibility during this decision-making process. Additionally, the study found that ESOL teachers considered many factors when making reclassification decisions, including measures of academic, language, and literacy performance, the duration of ELD services received by students, and teachers’ own subjective perceptions and beliefs about students. This study was conducted prior to a major state policy change. Future research is needed to determine how decision-making practices used by teachers in the study compare to services for ELSWDs under the new policy.
  • Key Words: English learner students with disabilities, reclassification, ESOL teachers
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