Teacher Education, Educational Leadership & Policy ETDs

Publication Date



Bilingual education, teaching of academic content in two languages, is the instructional plan intended to help English language learner students develop the academic competence necessary to close the achievement gap that exists between minority students and English dominant students. This qualitative study examined the experiences of immigrant and native New Mexico Hispanic students in bilingual education. It examined participant perspectives about the influence of their own ethnic and national origins on the place of language in their families and lives; the meaning of language in their education, aspirations, and work; their experiences in and interpretations of bilingual education in school; and their sense of what is helpful and unhelpful in bilingual programs. Findings were categorized into the concepts of nationality and origins, culture and family, meaning of language, and relationship of language to future aspirations. Central to this research is the bilingual student and the elements of bilingual education program implementation themes: teaching strategies, support and resources, communication, and academics. The study presents conclusions, implications, and suggested practices for what students, staff, and parents perceive as a culturally relevant and state-of-the-art program design for bilingual education.


Bilingual Education

Document Type




Degree Name

Educational Leadership

Level of Degree


Department Name

Teacher Education, Educational Leadership & Policy

First Advisor

Chávez, Alicia F.

First Committee Member (Chair)

Borden, Allison M.

Second Committee Member

Trujillo, Fidel J.

Third Committee Member

Serna, Loretta