School of Education
Doctor of Education in Curriculum & Instruction (EdD)
English Language Learners (ELLs), English for Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL), Newcomer, Language Acquisition
Bilingual, Multilingual, and Multicultural Education | Education
Conrad, Lindsey Marie, "English for Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL) Teacher Experiences with Newcomer Students at the Secondary Level: A Phenomenological Study" (2019). Doctoral Dissertations and Projects. 2153.
The purpose of this transcendental phenomenological study was to describe the experiences of English for Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL) teachers and other staff members who work with newcomer English Language Learners (ELLs) at the secondary level in two Northern Virginia public school systems. Stephen Krashen’s (1982) theory of second language acquisition guided this study as it explains the ways in which students learn and acquire new language skills throughout their schooling and social experiences. The following central research question guided this study: What are the experiences of ESOL teachers and staff members who work with newcomer ELLs at the secondary level in Northern Virginia? Three sub-questions will support the central question: How do participants describe the learning environment? How do participants describe the process of second language acquisition for their students? How do participants describe the process of content area knowledge acquisition for their students? Participants were current newcomer ESOL teachers or other staff members (administrator, counselor, educational coach, or other school-based staff member) who work in one of two school districts in the Northern Virginia region. Data was collected through semi-structured interviews, writing prompt responses, a focus group, and a classroom analysis. Data analysis included bracketing, horizonalization, code clustering, textural description, structural description, and the essence of the phenomenon. Results of the study show that the learning environment, support, pedagogy and practices, and understanding student backgrounds are all major themes that shape newcomer ESOL teacher experiences at the secondary level.