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Investigating Heterogeneous Subgroups of Young English Language Learners in Development and Learning

Thu, April 16, 12:00 to 1:30pm, Sheraton, Floor: Fourth Level, Chicago VI&VII


This study applied the mixture IRT model to the Teaching Strategies GOLDĀ® to identify unobserved heterogeneous subgroups of young English language learners. A two-class model was identified as the best fitting model. Children of Class 1 appeared to be still adjusting and children of Class 2 were beginning to be assimilated. Both classes showed a similar pattern of the item difficulty hierarchy. Class 2 had a higher level of social-emotional development than Class 1. Class 1 had a higher level of development in receptive language and Class 2 had a higher level of development in expressive language. The findings of this study provided a more nuanced understanding of variability among ELL children.