School of Education
Doctor of Education in Curriculum & Instruction (EdD)
English Language Learners, ACT, English Proficiency, High-stakes Testing
Nye, Kimberly Hensley, "English Proficiency as a Predictor of ACT Scores: A Predictive Correlational Study" (2021). Doctoral Dissertations and Projects. 2882.
English Language Learners (ELLs) compose the fastest growing population in United States public schools. Lack of English language proficiency for these students has created a significant problem with assessment, particularly related to high-stakes accountability requirements. Identification of relationships between language proficiency and high-stakes test scores would benefit both the student and the school system. This archival, predictive correlational study examines if a relationship exists between English proficiency as measured by ACCESS for ELLs reading scores and American College Tests (ACT) composite and subscores in reading and mathematics. The population for this study included 11th grade English Language Learners in a medium-sized school system in North Carolina during four consecutive school years, 2014-2018. This study found ACCESS for ELLs reading scaled scores to be a statistically significant, albeit weak, predictor of ACT composite scores and mathematics sub scores. More research is needed to investigate the myriad of factors that influence an ELL’s achievement on high-stakes tests like the ACT.