Correlational study between California Standards Test and California English Language Development Test scores among English language learners

The United States has become more ethnically and linguistically diverse over the years due to the large influx of immigrants from different countries, as well as the cultural diversity among resident families who speak more than one language. States such as California, Texas, New York, and Miami have a high number of residents who speak a language other than English. Students whose primary language is anything other than English are considered English Language Learners (ELLs) and have to take an annual test to determine their English language proficiency. No Child Left Behind stipulates that all students need to be making yearly adequate academic progress and they use normed tests, such as the California Standards Test (CST), to determine whether sufficient growth has been made. Over the years there has been consistent evidence to support the fact that ELL students underperform in comparison to their monolingual peers. The persistent gap of underachievement supports the concept that students who lack sufficient English proficiency will have difficulty performing within age expected norms. This study seeks to analyze whether there is a correlation between California Standards Test (CST) and California English Language Development Test (CELDT). A correlational study between these two standardized tests used in the schools is useful because it allows educators to make predictions as to how language proficiency affects academic performance. By understanding the correlations one can target students who need extra support to advance academically and get reclassified out of English Language Development (ELD) programs. Moreover, understanding the correlation between these two standardized tests will assist educators in the validity of using CST for evaluation purposes.

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