Initiatives - DLI Alliance - Critical Research Areas

Critical research areas in dual language immersion.

Critical Research Areas

Educational innovation must not occur in a vacuum. Practitioners currently engaged in developing and implementing dual language programs across varied settings need systematic and comprehensive guidance and answers to issues that impact the quality, cost, and sustainability of their efforts.

During its startup, the Alliance has begun to identify the pressing curricular and policy questions that are consistently raised by practitioners. We highlight some of the key areas below, which directly inform our current research agenda.

  • How do student academic, linguistic, cultural, cognitive, non-cognitive, and socio-emotional outcomes in DLI programs compare to non-DLI programs--including English-immersion and traditional bilingual approaches?
  • How do different program models impact results? What are the best models to adopt?
  • Do ELs do better academically in DLI programs when compared to non-DLI programs?
  • How does the effect of DLI programs on student outcomes vary by student characteristics, teacher profiles, DLI program types, and instructional environments?
  • How can programs accommodate late-entry students?
  • What are the best approaches to identifying schools for DLI programs, what is the potential impact of DLI programs on local neighborhoods, and how do we achieve equity for all students including African-Americans?
  • What types of assessments should school district officials use to monitor and evaluate the outcomes of students participating in DLI programs?
  • How can elementary-level teacher prep programs incorporate the needs of DLI teachers?