Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Doctorate of Education, Ed.D.


College of Education



First Advisor

Jillian Skelton, Ed.D.

Second Advisor

Donna Graham, Ph.D.

Third Advisor

Nicholas Markette, Ed.D.


The number of English language learners (ELLs) in public schools is increasing rapidly throughout the United States. All teachers are expected to meet the individual needs of these culturally and linguistically diverse students in their classrooms. However, little training and guidance in preservice teacher education programs is being provided to prepare future teachers. This study investigated how first year teachers viewed their preparation of working with English language learners in their preservice teacher education program. From a transformative learning lens, it is recommended that preservice teacher education programs consider effective ways to provide a variety of field experiences and classroom experiences that will help prospective teachers understand how to teach ELLs. The research question was How do first year teachers perceive their preparation of working with English language learners? Drawing from qualitative data, the study described the experiences of six first year teachers and included their personal background, field experiences, and classroom experiences. The data revealed that teachers need more ELL one-on-one opportunities, professional development, and instructional support and resources in their preservice teacher education program.

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