David Francis, Ph.D.
Director, Principal Investigator
Dr. Francis is the Director of the Center for the Success of English Learners (CSEL) as well as the Director of Texas Institute for Measurement, Evaluation and Statistics at the University of Houston.
Social Studies Strand
The social studies strand is committed to improving social studies outcomes for English learners in the secondary grades through the development and testing of interventions. The social studies interventions will draw upon instructional elements identified as effective in improving content expertise among English learners, including team-based learning, formative assessment, and foregrounding content to support language learning. With the support experienced educators of English learners, the social studies research team will create a fully developed and tested set of instructional lessons that teachers can implement with their students in Grades 6 and 9.
Sharon Vaughn, Ph.D.
Lead Investigator, Social Studies Strand
Sharon Vaughn is the Associate Director of the center as well as Director of the Meadows Center for Preventing Educational Risk at the University of Texas at Austin. She is working with the intervention team to design practices for improving language and literacy in social studies.
Leticia Martinez, Ph.D.
Leticia Martinez, part of the UT Austin team, will co-lead the development of the social studies curriculum for English learners in grades 6 and 9. She will collaborate with teachers in Texas to test the efficacy of the instructional practices in secondary classrooms.
The policy team will investigate the barriers that English learners face in accessing the general curriculum and advanced course-taking. Using analyses of multiple large state and local datasets as well as original survey data and policy document analyses, we will explore: (1) the extent of tracking that English learners face, (2) the predictors of tracking (including educator attitudes and beliefs, implementation of policies), and (3) the outcomes associated with tracking (including achievement, English language proficiency, graduation, and post-secondary enrollment).
Coleen is a co-investigator on the policy strand.