Identity and Motivation Among Hispanic ELLs

Francesca Lopez

Abstract


This study examined the degree to which student-level variables that have been established in the relevant literature as predicting academic achievement (perception of scholastic competence, perceptions of educational opportunities, motivation, and acculturative stress) accurately predicted student group membership in two districts with disparate language acquisition methods (Structured English Immersion and bilingual education) . The samples included Hispanic English Language Learners (ELLs) in middle elementary school, ages 9-11 (N= 295). Students' perceptions of scholastic competence, perceptions of educational opportunities, motivation, and acculturative stress contributed to the accurate prediction of 73.3% of the participants' group membership. Post-hoc analyses of group differences resulted in moderately higher scholastic competence and perceived educational opportunities for ELLs in the Texas district, whereas acculturative stress, perceived discrimination, and maladaptive motivation scores were moderately higher for ELLs in the Arizona district. ELLs in the SEI group, however, also had slightly higher scores on adaptive motivation. Competing hypotheses and policy implications are discussed in the context of prior research.



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DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.14507/epaa.v18n16.2010

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