Date of Award

Spring 5-13-2021

Document Type


Degree Name

PHD - Doctor of Philosophy


Counseling & Psychology

First Advisor

Adam Meiselman

Second Advisor

Peiwei Li

Third Advisor

Maura Walsh


The current placement of Hispanic level 1 and 2 English Learner students into mathematics courses has been constructed and propagated by the assumptions that these students enter school in the United States at a lower level in mathematics. This assumption, which has neither been tested nor confirmed, perpetuates the systemic injustices in public education by erroneously creating a homogeneous placement process for Hispanic English Learner students and contributes to the economic, social, and political marginalization often experienced by Hispanic immigrants. The purpose of the current project was to examine the veracity of these assumptions by exploring the mathematics placement practices that have historically excluded Hispanic level 1 and 2 students from higher-level mathematics courses and to utilize the results to start to develop more equitable mathematics placement practices. Using a multifaceted quantitative research design, including multiple regression, a two one-sided test for equivalence, and exploratory post hoc analyses, the mathematics placement practices of Hispanic level 1 and 2 students were examined. The results of the current project suggest the existence of broader, systemic assumptions surrounding immigrant students and their ability to perform academically at the same level as their native English-speaking peers. Proposed evidence-based research with the target population that is needed to make effective change in mathematics placement for Hispanic level 1 and 2 students is explored.

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License.



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