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Research

Academic Language of Historical Analysis (ALOHA)

Researchers: Anne Homza, Ed.D, Laura Schall-Leckrone, Olga Doktorov The academic language of historical analysis (ALOHA) intervention is embedded in a history methods class at Boston College (BC) and works to help teacher candidates learn how to teach the language of history while also teaching the content of history.  In order to evaluate the impact and outcomes of this intervention, a mixed methods study is also being conducted on the intervention during the 2009-2010 school year.  Through surveys, interviews, observations, lesson plans and ALOHA class assignments, this research investigates what teacher candidates learn through participating in the ALHOA intervention.


Developing Understandings of Academic Language in the Content Areas: Pre-service Teachers’ Reflections, Lesson Planning, and Practice

Researchers: Anne Homza, Ed.D. and Kevin O’Connor The Academic Language Project is a fieldwork requirement for all secondary teacher candidates.  This project works to help teacher candidates learn about the academic language demands of their content area and how to help bilingual learners develop strong academic language proficiencies.  A qualitative study is being conducted on this project in order to learn about its impact on teacher candidate practice.  By looking at the journal entries written throughout the fieldwork experiences as well as lesson plans over time and across cohorts, this research will provide valuable insights into the development and practice of teacher candidates over time.


Teaching Academic Language in the Content Area – Mathematics

Researchers: Anne Homza, Ed.D. and Karen Terrell This mixed methods study will assess the impact of an intervention to prepare pre-service mathematics teachers to work with English language learners (ELLs) in mainstream secondary mathematics classes.  This intervention is taking place in the mathematics methods course wherein mathematics is viewed as a “shared activity…open to discussion, investigation, and hypothesis” (Nickson, 1992, p. 104).  As this “sharing” leads to a further expansion of the definition of mathematics to include oral and written exchange in addition to the study of numbers and computations, pre-service teachers will learn to assist their students in developing the academic language of mathematics necessary to successfully participate in such  “shared” activities. This study takes place during the 2009-2010 school year and is utilizing surveys, interviews, observations, lesson plans, course assignments, practicum projects, and field notes and memos for the analysis of the intervention.


Completed Research

Read Aloud Project

Researchers: Anne Homza, Ed.D., Kara Mitchell, and Sarah Ngo At the Lynch School of Education (LSOE), all elementary and early childhood level teacher candidates participate in the Read Aloud Project (RAP) during their pre-practicum fieldwork placements.  This project requires teacher candidates to develop and conduct language and literacy rich read alouds with a bilingual learner during each pre-practicum visit. In the third year of RAP implementation, a qualitative study was undertaken to learn about TCs’ development of specific read aloud practices and perceptions of bilingual learners.  Data sources included observations of read alouds and interviews with teacher candidates, cooperating teachers, and LSOE supervisors.  Overall, this study found that the RAP is promoting positive outcomes for teacher candidates. As a result of this research and continual reflection, several improvements have been made to RAP trainings and supports.