Title

What is ESL?

Document Type

Contribution to Books

Publication Date

2013

Abstract

Much has been said about the diversity in the population we often refer to as ESL students. Although the bulk of the research on secondlanguage writing in the 1980s and 90s was concerned mostly with international students with visas to study in the US, significant attention in the last decade has been paid to an important distinction between international students and US-resident learners of English. Several books have been written about resident linguistic minority students (Harklau, Losey, and Siegal; Ferris; Kanno and Harklau; Roberge, Siegal, and Harklau) and the ways in which their needs as writers differ from the needs of international students (see also Reid; Matsuda and Matsuda). Several special issues of the Journal of Second_Language Writing have been devoted to early childhood and adolescent second language writing as well, and disciplinary links have been made in recent years with bilingual education (Edelsky and Shuck). In fact, the complexity that is the ESL population is so rich and intricate that I am tempted to use scare quotes every time I use the word population. After all, many multilingual learners of English have far more in common with native English speakers/writers than they do with other learners of English.1 For now, however, I'll frame this paper with a summary of who multilingual students are.

Copyright Statement

This document was originally published by Parlor Press in A Rhetoric for Writing Program Administrators. Copyright restrictions may apply. © 2013 by Parlor Press. Used by permission. http://www.parlorpress.com

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