Comparing the Performance of ESL and English-Native Speaking Students in an Introductory Level Statistics Course

Hend Aljobaily, Austin Brown, Bryce Whitehead, Kofi Wagya


English as a second language (ESL) students often face more challenges than their English-Native Speaking (ENS) peers due to language and cultural barriers. The purpose of this study is to investigate the difference in performance between ESL students and ENS students in the introductory level statistics course, STAT150, at the University of Norther Colorado (UNC). Due to the dichotomous nature of the data and the large differences in sample sizes between ESN and ESL students, the Bootstrapped Logistic Regression model is used to analyze the data. Contrary to the findings of previously conducted studies, the results of this study suggest that ESL students who have been enrolled in STAT 150 at UNC are just as likely to receive a high mark in the course as their ENS counterparts. One explanation for this finding is that the level of instruction and quality of content provided throughout the course gave all students, including ESL students, all the information necessary to succeed in the course. If this explanation is accepted, the outcomecentric results found by this study reflect well upon the overall quality of instruction and English proficiency policies at UNC.  

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