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Home Journal Index 2022-4

Supporting English Learners With Disabilities in Writing Through Self-Regulated Strategy Development

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Caroline Torres
Kapi‘olani Community College, USA


Amber B. Ray
University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, USA


Abstract
English learners with disabilities (ELSWD) regularly face challenges with writing, but there is limited research on what approach to writing instruction is effective for these students. This study examines the effect of Self-Regulated Strategy Development (SRSD) for writing, an evidence-based practice for students with learning disabilities, on the writing of ELSWD. Teachers in a small elementary school participated in practice-based professional development to learn how to teach writing through SRSD. Then, they implemented SRSD writing instruction to support their learners, particularly English learners (ELs) and ELSWD. Fifteen ELWSD received SRSD writing instruction for a total of a year and a half (six quarters). Pretest and posttest writing was analyzed and showed that the majority of students improved in their ability to plan their writing, creating a graphic organizer and using a genre-specific strategy as a part of their prewriting plans. In addition, the majority of students also improved in the number of genre elements included in their essays and overall writing quality. This paper concludes with recommendations for practitioners and for further research.


Keywords
English learners with disabilities, writing, Self-Regulated Strategy Development, Practice-Based Professional Development