LA 5.2: Worksheet - Program Model Summary 5


These programs are specifically designed for LEP students. They may also be called Content-Based ESOL or Specially Designed Academic Instruction in English (SDAIE). The medium of instruction is English with the level of instruction adapted to language proficiency of students.

Student Population

Relationship to School

Exposure to English Speakers

Students may come from a variety of L1 backgrounds. They usually spend some portion of the day with native English speakers, but at the secondary level this may depend on how much of their content is presented in “sheltered” courses.

Teacher Population

Teachers are not necessarily bilingual, usually not educated in the subject matter, but are ESL specialists. In some cases courses are team taught with ESL specialists and content teachers (not usually). Teachers teach courses taught in the general curriculum adapted to student language skills. Teachers use gestures, visual aids and simplified language.


Instructional Costs

These programs require at least one ESL specialist. They require special materials, because the curriculum is simplified, and they require space.

Program Length

Students are in these programs for only one or two years; but spend from one hour to an entire day in sheltered instruction.

Linguistic Emphasis

(L1=primary language, L2=English)

Theories of Language Learning

Native Language Support

These programs are based on Krashen’s acquisition-learning hypothesis and comprehensible input hypothesis. L2 acquisition is enhanced when content is the medium for learning language. Building on former content knowledge, teachers develop language and new understandings in content. L1 is used ironically to support L2 learning—past content knowledge in L1 will become L2 learning. But L1 is not itself supported.

Academic Emphasis

Content and Language

Teachers use content to teach language and language to teach content, but the focus is strictly on academic language acquisition in L2.

Sociocultural Emphasis

C1=1st Culture

C2=2nd Culture

Since both languages are actively cultivated throughout the duration of this program, it represents a pluralistic view of language and culture.

Cognitive Emphasis

This program implies a cognitive emphasis. Whether that is realized is context dependent: the skill of the teacher to exploit the language and the academic content for L2 development and the academic skill of the students in L1 are major intervening variables.

% of Achievement Gap Closed by End of Schooling

(based on data-analytic research)

The strongest programs still close less than 50% of the achievement gap, while weak programs will close none.