Researchers from MCPER and five other institutions are addressing the critical need to provide effective instruction for English language learners in content area classes in seventh grade. Specifically, the Center for Research on the Educational Achievement and Teaching of English Language Learners (CREATE) examines the efficacy of a social studies intervention based on specific instructional and learning strategies, supplemental materials (e.g., video), and mixed grouping arrangements.

The goals of the study are to do the following:

  • Integrate vocabulary and English as a second language into interventions to enhance comprehension strategy instruction

  • Determine the added value of strategies for English as a second language instruction and of vocabulary enhancement in the Teacher Directed Strategy Instruction intervention

  • Examine the efficacy of two interventions that vary in the method of delivery

  • Identify and describe the response to the interventions of students with differing levels of English proficiency

The multisite study includes a development and pilot phase and randomized controlled trials to examine the efficacy and feasibility of the instruction. The following four main components of the intervention have been refined and described:

  • Video and purposeful discussion to build concepts

  • Writing to build comprehension and vocabulary

  • Summarizing by using questioning to build comprehension

  • Structured paired grouping arrangements


Research is ongoing.

Findings (Publications and Presentations)

Project Design


Seventh-grade English language learners

Contact Information

Colleen Reutebuch
Project Coordinator

Principal Investigators

  • Sharon Vaughn

Non-MCPER Principal Investigators

  • David Francis, University of Houston

Non-MCPER Additional Investigators

  • Coleen Carlson, University of Houston
  • Jana Echevarria, California State University at Long Beach
  • Catherine Richards, California State University at Long Beach
  • Debbie Short, Center for Applied Linguistics
  • Catherine Snow, Harvard University
  • Claire White, Harvard University
  • Elfrieda Hiebert, University of California – Berkeley
  • Sylvia Linan-Thompson, The University of Texas at Austin

Funding Agency


  • 5-year project, began in fall of 2005


  • Texas schools


More information can be found on the CREATE external website.