• The beliefs of undergraduate pre-service teachers at a Western New York college about English language learners

      Denz, David (State University of New York College at Fredonia, 2018-05)
      As the population of English Language Learners grow throughout the Western New York Area, it is important to consider how well the undergraduate pre-service teachers emerging within the area are prepared to teach these students. A variety of studies have shown that many mainstream teachers often hold deficit perspectives towards ELLs in public education, meaning they focus on any potential weaknesses of ELLs as opposed to looking at these students in a positive light. This deficit perspective can lead to a variety of issues such as slow development of English Langauge Proficiency, lower achievement rates compared to peers who are native English speakers, and high drop out rates. This study aimed to identify the core beleifs of pre-service undergraduate teachers a major education college in Western New York in order to identify any potential existance of deficit perspective among these students. Characteristics such as experience, past education, and origins of beliefs will be examined in order to further study the undergraduate students at the college. [from author's abstract]
    • The role of literacy in school readiness

      Noble, Brittney (State University of New York College at Fredonia, 2016-05)
      School readiness is a problem for Kindergarten and grade one teachers and for school administrators who may not have a clear understanding of what the term includes or how it is measured. This problem of confusion of concept and measurement of "school readiness" leads a reading specialist to ask the question, what does research indicate to be the role and measurement of school readiness especially as related to literacy development? To address this question, an extensive literature review and synthesis were conducted. Results indicate four findings. First is that there appears to be no universally accepted definition for the term "school readiness." Second is that school readiness appears to be defined in one of three ways: as a measurement of certain literacy skills (frequently oral language skills, letter recognition, letter sounds, phonological awareness, knowledge of print); as a measurement of certain behavioral skills (generally: emotional coping, problem solving, self-regulation); or as a measurement of a combination of behavioral and literacy skills. The third finding is that only a few researchers define readiness exclusively in terms of literacy skills, many define it exclusively in terms of behavioral skills, and some define it in terms of a combination of literacy and behavioral skills. The fourth finding is that when including literacy skills in the definition, there is no one literacy skill or set of skills that universally determine school readiness, and no one measurement or set of measurements for measuring those skills. These findings will be disseminated through an informational professional development brochure. [from author's abstract]