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Title:A Meta-Analysis of Selected Studies on the Effectiveness of Bilingual Education
Author(s):Willig, Ann Cecelia
Department / Program:Education
Degree Granting Institution:University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Subject(s):Education, Bilingual and Multicultural
Abstract:A meta-analysis of selected studies on the efficacy of bilingual education was conducted and the results were compared with a traditional review of the same literature. Participation in bilingual education programs consistently produced small to moderate differences favoring bilingual education when tests were administered in English and moderate to large differences favoring bilingual education when tests were administered in other languages. When tests were in English, bilingual education students score significantly higher in areas of reading, language skills, mathematics and total achievement; when tested in other languages, they scored significantly higher in reading, language, mathematics, writing, social studies, listening comprehension and attitudes towards school or self. The magnitude of Effect Sizes was influenced by types of programs compared, language of the criterion instruments, academic domain of the criterion instruments, random vs. non-random assignment of students to programs, formula used to calculate Effect Sizes and types of scores reported in the studies. Programs characterized by instability and/or hostile environments were associated with lower Effect Sizes. The synthesized studies contained a variety of methodological weaknesses which affected the magnitude of the Effect Sizes. Initial group differences--in language dominance, in environmental language exposure, in need for the bilingual program--were not uncommon. In some cases, comparison groups contained bilingual program "graduates." In others, experimental groups changed in composition during the study through the exiting of successful students and their replacement with newcomers. Although the technique of meta-analysis allows for statistical control of methodological inadequacies, the methodological inadequacies in the synthesized studies render the results less than definitive and highlight the need for quality research in the area of bilingual education. Guidelines for future research are proposed and discussed in relation to the outcomes of this synthesis.
Issue Date:1984
Description:135 p.
Thesis (Ph.D.)--University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, 1984.
Other Identifier(s):(UMI)AAI8422175
Date Available in IDEALS:2014-12-15
Date Deposited:1984

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