ELL Assessment of linguistic differences vs learning disabilities

Maria Serpa, Ph.D. has designed a very comprehensive site with recommendations, readings, and comparison sheets regarding language differences versus learning disabilities. She includes recommendations for assessment practices and her professional opinions regarding standardized testing. She also has a section with readings on immigration patterns and special educations law and resources. Finally, she has a very nice section on differences between spanish speakers and the differences that they may bring to the English language learning process in respect to phonological awareness, grammatical influences, semantic influences, pragmatic contexts, and written language. Enjoy!

to access the page click here

Websites of Interest

Claudia Rinaldi View All →

Professor Claudia Rinaldi is the Chair of the Education Program at Lasell University. Her areas of research are the implementation of the Multi-Tier System of Supports (MTSS) framework in urban settings with English learners, teacher education in bilingual special education, and diversifying the teacher pipeline. Claudia has authored peer-reviewed publications and a book for educators called Practical Ways to Engage All Struggling Readers. She lead and developed a graduate certificate program in Teaching Bilingual Students with Disabilities for general, ESL and special education teachers geared towards applying research-informed practices to the questions and processes of identifying whether it is a language difference or a learning disability. Claudia developed a college mentoring program called Pathways to Teacher Diversity for districts and teacher education programs to partner in identifying and supporting underrepresented high school students interested in teaching careers to successfully access and persist in college. She serves in various boards including the National Center for Learning Disabilities and serves as an expert for Understood.org and the National Center for Intensive Interventions.

Professor Claudia Rinaldi believes that it is critical to prepare teacher leaders who may serve as advocates and allies and who will respond to the belief that all students can learn and succeed beyond barriers like culture, language, disability poverty, and marginalization in our country and globally.

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