Generation 1.5 Students and the Language Demands of Community College
George C. Bunch

About the research


NAEd/Spencer Postdoctoral Fellowship

Award Year



University of California, Santa Cruz

Primary Discipline

Literacy and/or English/Language Education
As the US public school population becomes more linguistically diverse, and as higher education is increasingly necessary for 21st Century economic and civic life, a greater understanding is needed of the linguistic challenges facing students as they pursue postsecondary education. The proposed project aims to develop a framework for documenting language demands facing US-educated language minority students (“Generation 1.5”) as they pursue higher education at the community college level, the first step in many students’ postsecondary endeavors. A multidimensional framework, based on functional and sociocultural perspectives on language, will identify the language demands associated with one professional program and one transfer program at a central California community college. Administrative and instructional documents, interviews with instructors and students, and classroom observations will be used to evaluate which language demands are most crucial to the completion of the academic work required for the program, which of the demands present significant challenges, and what strategies students used to meet the challenges. The study will inform research, policy, and practice related to the preparation of language minority students for college-level coursework as well as larger efforts to understand how language ideologies influence academic and language development opportunities throughout students’ academic careers.
About George C. Bunch

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