The Induction and Mentoring Experiences of New English as a Second Language and Bilingual Teachers
Raab, Rebecca Raine
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The focus of this dissertation is on the induction and mentoring experiences of new English as a Second Language (ESL) and bilingual teachers. Included in the dissertation are three manuscripts: a systematic literature review of the experiences of and supports for new ESL/bilingual teachers, a descriptive analysis of their induction, and an inferential analysis (i.e., regression) of the extent to which working with a mentor improved their first-year instruction. The first manuscript (Chapter 2) is a systematic review of peer-reviewed articles documenting the experiences of and supports for new ESL/bilingual teachers in U.S public schools. Findings from 32 studies published from 2002-2020 were synthesized into three overarching themes (i.e., instructional contexts and roles; social contexts of teaching; formal induction supports). Many new teachers experienced challenges in their instructional contexts and roles and struggled to connect socially with others in their schools, leading to physical segregation and marginalization. Moreover, only a few studies elaborated on specific induction and mentoring supports. Manuscript 1 concludes with suggestions for researchers and implications for K-12 school leaders, teacher educators, and new ESL/bilingual teachers. The second manuscript (Chapter 3) presents the findings of a secondary descriptive analysis of new ESL/bilingual teacher induction using the nationally representative 2011-12 Schools and Staffing Survey Teacher Questionnaire. Findings provide a first of its kind national profile of their induction supports, levels of perceived preparedness for the first year, and demographic characteristics, as well as a comparison to new general educators. Findings indicate that a lower percentage of new ESL/bilingual teachers than general educators received important induction supports (i.e., administrator feedback, same-subject mentoring, and frequent mentoring) and were not well prepared for critical teaching tasks (e.g., assessing students). Demographically, a higher percentage of new ESL/bilingual teachers than general educators were teachers of color. The manuscript concludes with directions for future research and implications for teacher educators and school leaders. The third manuscript (Chapter 4) investigated which mentoring components (i.e., same-subject mentors, frequency of mentoring, and other mentoring activities), predicted new ESL/bilingual teachers' perceptions that their mentors helped improve their first year of teaching. Using a nationally representative sample of ESL/bilingual teachers. I found that frequent weekly mentoring, help with developing student assessment tools, and help with paperwork/record keeping were statistically significant predictors of the extent to which new ESL/bilingual teachers indicated their mentors improved their first-year teaching. I conclude with suggestions for future research and improving mentoring programs for new ESL/bilingual teachers.
General Audience Abstract
The induction and mentoring experiences of new general educators are well documented; however, we know little about the experiences of new English as a Second Language (ESL) and bilingual teachers. This dissertation, comprised of three manuscripts, explores their induction and mentoring experiences. Chapter 2 reviews the literature published between 2002-2020 on the experiences of and supports for new ESL/bilingual teachers. Findings revealed that new ESL/bilingual teachers experienced challenges in instructional contexts and their roles, struggled in social contexts with other teachers and administrators, and sometimes felt marginalized and physically segregated in their schools. Moreover, evidence of induction and mentoring supports were limited. Chapter 3 presents findings from a secondary descriptive analysis of new ESL/bilingual teacher induction using nationally representative data. Findings suggest that low percentages of new ESL/bilingual teachers perceived themselves to be prepared in the first year for key teaching tasks and others did not have common induction supports. Moreover, these findings were compared with new general educators' revealing differences in descriptive results. Chapter 4 explores the mentoring experiences of new ESL/bilingual teachers. Using a nationally representative sample and regression, findings reveal that a number of new ESL/bilingual teachers did not have weekly mentoring with same-subject mentors, nor did they participate in important mentoring activities. Regression results revealed that weekly mentoring, help with paperwork/record keeping, and help with developing student assessments were statistically significant predictors of the extent to which new ESL/bilingual teachers perceived that their mentors improved their first-year teaching. Discussions in each manuscript provide suggestions for future researchers and implications for school leaders and teacher educators.
- Doctoral Dissertations