This Is AuburnElectronic Theses and Dissertations

Pre-Service Counselors, Pre-Service Special Education, and Pre-Service Regular Education Teachers’ Perceptions of Students Who Are English Language Learners




Darch, Eric

Type of Degree

PhD Dissertation


Special Education, Rehabilitation, Counseling


Continued research in the area of Linguistically Diverse Students (LDS) suggests that educators’ perceptions and attitudes significantly impacts the students they teach. Research has identified predictors of these attitudes, which may serve to guide educational evaluation and development of teacher education programs, as well as student academic and emotional outcomes. This study examined the attitudes, feelings, and beliefs of pre-service regular education teachers, pre-service special education teachers, and pre-service school counselors towards English Language Learners (ELLs) and the possible relationships among these groups by using a multiple analysis of variance (MANOVA). This study also replicated previous research by attempting to identify factors that may predict pre-educator feelings and beliefs, in addition to possibly identifying additional predictors of these beliefs. This was achieved by multivariate regression analysis. An adapted version of the Pre-Service Inclusion Survey (PSIS), and the English Language Learner Perception Survey, in conjunction with a researched based demographic questionnaire, and two open-ended questions were used to measure pre-educator attitudes and beliefs towards English language learners. The quantitative analyses indicated no significant differences among educator groups, however the participant responses to the questions revealed an overwhelmingly ii i favorable attitude towards the inclusion of English Language Learners. Further analyses identified several common themes among respondents. These themes were: need for more teacher support, need for more ELL support, ELLs introduce beneficial culture in the classroom, English language acquisition must be a priority for ELLs, concern for ELL wellbeing during transition and adjustment, and bilingualism is beneficial. The study results were discussed in relation to the research questions, as well as the implications, limitations, and recommendations for future studies.