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Language, Literacy, and Learning in the Content Areas

Co-founder of Understanding Language, Kenji Hakuta, contributed to a panel discussion to discuss how the 2017 National Academies report, "Promoting the Educational Success of Children and Youth Learning English" has already influenced relevant federal, state, and district policies and how it can inform current policy discussions.
MLL Policy
Teaching Resources | Math
These principles and accompanying Mathematical Language Routines provide guidance to mathematics teachers for recognizing and supporting students' language development processes in the context of mathematical sense making.
Educator Resources
These six professional development essentials were created by Understanding Language to assist schools, school districts, state or county offices of education, and professional development providers as they design well-balanced professional development plans for educators of multilingual learners.
Systems Support
Remote Learning
States, districts, and schools have asked for help with gathering information on student progress, given the shift to distance learning. In response, Understanding Language created two one-hour virtual sessions focused on strengthening Formative Assessment practices in remote and non-remote environments.
Educator Resources
How do school communities create environments that fully prepare both English learners and dual-language learners for colleges and careers? UL staff contributed to the research and writing of this book, which profiles six high-performing high schools that had a singular focus on improving the educational outcomes of English learners.
Systems Support
Understanding Language developed a set of six key principles for instruction that helps ELLs meet the rigorous, grade level academic standards found in the Common Core State Standards and Next Generation Science Standards. These principles are meant to guide teachers, coaches, ELL specialists, curriculum leaders, school principals, and district administrators as they work to develop standards-aligned instruction.
MLL Policy
At the 2013 AERA annual conference in San Francisco, Margaret Heritage, Aida Walqui, and Robert Linquanti wrote "Formative Assessment As Contingent Teaching and Learning: Perspectives on Assessment As and For Language Learning in the Content Areas". This paper builds on their prior work with a specific focus on the classroom-centered practices of formative assessment -- and, on how formative assessment can support contingent teaching and learning for English Language Learners.
MLL Policy
The Institute for Education Sciences announced a program in Continuous Improvement Research in Education, to begin in 2014. IES also requested comment on the program, which is divided into three proposed areas of investigation. Understanding Language commends this initiative and suggests adding a fourth, complementary line of research on the role of language in content-area classrooms. For our full comment, please see the document attached below.
MLL Policy
To ensure students' linguistic, cognitive, and academic potential is realized, state English language proficiency (ELP) standards must align with and support development of the language capacities found in the new content standards. This brief discusses the implications for designing appropriately aligned next-generation ELP standards, assessments, and instruction.
MLL Policy
In January 2012, over 60 researchers, policy makers, practitioners, and educational leaders gathered on the campus of Stanford University for the Understanding Language conference. Bringing cross-disciplinary expertise in language, content area learning, and assessments, they convened to discuss the implications of the Common Core State Standards for the success of English Language Learners. This brief presents a summary of the conference.
MLL Policy
We know the best research evidence indicates that instructing ELL students bilingually strengthens their academic content knowledge and skills. This brief discusses the implications of the Common Core for bilingual education.
MLL Policy
A collection of publications.
MLL Research