A Preliminary Report on Ongoing
Research of Interactive Tutoring
Software to Improve English
Fluency and Literacy in ELLs
Presented to the
National Conference on Family Literacy
Clydie Wakefield, Vice President of
Instructional Design, Imagine Learning Inc.
In collaboration with
Department of Educational Equity,
Granite School District
Researching Software Solutions
Since 2003, Granite School District has piloted several software programs targeting English Language Learners.
conducting an exhaustive RFP process and evaluating multiple products, the district contracted with Imagine
English (ILE) to implement a computer-delivered English language development program into 13 Title One
schools. This preliminary report displays the research that supports Granite School District’s goals in finding a
promising solution for an overwhelming challenge: to provide the best instructional strategies to ensure English
and literacy for our English language learners.
Challenges Confronting English Language Learners
English language learners (ELLs) constitute the most rapidly growing segment of the total pre-K through 12th
public school enrollment—growing 100 percent from 1990 to 2000 (Kindler, 2002). Compare that to the general
population, which grew by only 12 percent during the same time period. Some states have experienced even
rates because of the recent shift away from the traditional receiving states. New receiving states (Alabama,
Colorado, Indiana, North Carolina, and others) have experienced much higher rates, between 200–300 percent
(Padolski, 2005). Schools in these new receiving states are often unprepared for the influx of non-English
students and ill-equipped to provide services for English learners.
The map below (Figure 1) illustrates recent changes: many states are experiencing a dramatic increase in the
of ELLs (note the number of dark blue states with greater than 100 percent increase, as well as the li