Publication Date

Spring 4-18-2016


School of Education


TESL--Teacher Certification


Special Education, Second Language Acquisition, Disabilities, ESL, TESL, ELL


Bilingual, Multilingual, and Multicultural Education | Special Education and Teaching


English language learners (ELLs) are growing in number in the United States school system. With this increase in population comes the task of providing quality and appropriate education for these students. A great part of this responsibility falls on instructors of English as a Second/Foreign Language (ES/FL) courses. As with every other content area, the possibility of having students with disabilities and disorders in the classroom exists. However, in the context of language acquisition unique obstacles and pitfalls exist which are particular to this field. Providing services for ELLs with special needs is a major concern in the realm of education. Each area of intervention is affected by the fact that these students are not functioning in their first language and by the fact that many disabilities interfere with language processing and social skills. The relationship between the language acquisition process and certain disabilities is an essential part to understanding how to assist these students in language learning. Methods, approaches, and curriculum can be modified and accommodations can be made in order to allow English language learners with special needs to achieve their highest level of success in the ES/FL classroom.