The confidence to teach english language learners: Exploring coursework's role in developing preservice teachers' efficacy

Margarita Jimenez-Silva, Kate Olson, Norma Jimenez Hernandez

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

19 Scopus citations


As our schools become increasingly diverse and the effects of immigration can be felt across the nation, some states have mandated that preservice teachers take endorsement courses that focus on teaching English Language Learners (ELLs) with the purpose of ensuring that teachers are able to meet ELLs' social and academic needs. A significant factor in improving instructional practices for ELLs is preservice teachers' confidence in their ability to teach ELLs successfully. What remains to be seen, however, is how best to organize and implement endorsement courses so that they have a positive effect on teachers' confidence to use their new knowledge to teach in effective ways. In this study, we discuss how endorsement curricula can build teachers' self-efficacy for teaching ELLs by not just covering the required content, but by being conscientious in how the curricula are organized and delivered. By providing teachers with the foundational knowledge through the use of meaningful and engaging pedagogical practices, preservice teachers' efficacy and beliefs about instructing ELLs will increase. This, in turn, will provide them with the confidence to teach those who may be very different culturally and linguistically from themselves.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)9-28
Number of pages20
JournalTeacher Educator
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 1 2012


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Education

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