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SPCL 7914: Psychological Assessment of Diverse Students (Elizalde-Utnick): Session 2 - Unit 1, continued: Pre-Referral Considerations

Open Educational Resource (OER) created for Professor Elizalde-Utnick's SPCL 7914 course.


In this session we will explore the pre-referral considerations, including second language acquisition, and strategies for distinguishing between diversity, second language learning, and disability. The session will consist of a quiz, discussion, and team application activities.

Assigned Readings


Note: The Paradis reading was eliminated. The quiz will only be on the Ochoa reading.

Session Slides

Reflecting on the Readings

1. According to Ochoa what are the key factors that influence the special education referrals?

2. What are effective learning environments for emergent bilinguals?

3. According to Ochoa, which pre-referral factors need to be considered? 

Language Acquisition Chart for English Language Learners

Students acquire second (third, etc) languages in stages. It is important to determine where students are at in the language acquisition process. Students exhibit verbal and nonverbal behaviors depending on the stage of acquisition they are at. They may also exhibit learning challenges as well as social-emotional challenges, which are often part of typical processes that English language learners -- and immigrant students, in general -- may experience. English language learners benefit from differentiated instructional strategies tailored to the stage of second language acquisition that they are at.

Possible Difficulties Associated with ELL Status