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Bilingual language supports in online science inquiry environments
ARTICLE

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Computers & Education Volume 58, Number 4, ISSN 0360-1315 Publisher: Elsevier Ltd

Abstract

Research over the past fifteen years has investigated and developed online science inquiry environments to support students engaging in authentic scientific inquiry practices. This research has focused on developing activity structures and tools to scaffold students in engaging in different aspects of these practices, but relatively little of this research has explored linguistic supports for language minority students studying science in their non-native language. These students are simultaneously learning science and the surrounding academic language in their second language. This study investigates the potential value of providing 8th grade Spanish-speaking English language learners access to content and supports in both English and Spanish as opposed to an English-only format in an online science inquiry environment. Learning outcomes are compared between the two conditions on an immediate post-test in English, a delayed post-test in English, a delayed post-test in Spanish, and a written essay in English in the form of a letter to the governor. The outcomes suggest significant benefits for providing ELL students with access to content and supports in both English and Spanish as opposed to the English-only format. The findings of this study carry important policy implications in light of the growing English-only political movements in the United States and similar political movements in other countries.

Citation

Clark, D.B., Touchman, S., Martinez-Garza, M., Ramirez-Marin, F. & Skjerping Drews, T. (2012). Bilingual language supports in online science inquiry environments. Computers & Education, 58(4), 1207-1224. Elsevier Ltd. Retrieved May 29, 2020 from .

This record was imported from Computers & Education on January 29, 2019. Computers & Education is a publication of Elsevier.

Full text is availabe on Science Direct: http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.compedu.2011.11.019

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