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Self-Study: Unbiased Speech-Language Assessment of Bilingual Students Learning English (An Introduction)

  • 01 Jul 2023
  • 31 Jul 2023
  • 296



Self-Study: Unbiased Speech-Language Assessment of 
Bilingual Students Learning English (An Introduction)

Available July 1-31

Members: FREE
Non-Members: $60

This presentation will give you an overview of who the bilingual student who is learning English in Boston Public Schools (or any other urban district) is; stages of second language acquisition; useful information to help you determine if the student presents with a language disorder or a language difference; and basic considerations when assessing a bilingual student who is learning English.

Rebeca Rivera Rivera is a Bilingual (Spanish-English) Speech-Language Pathologist working for the Boston Public Schools since 1990. She also worked for 4 years as an Evaluation Team Facilitator for the District coordinating and leading the eligibility meetings for special education. Currently in addition to working with students, she is also the Bilingual Liaison for the Related Services Department. As a dual-language learner herself, Ms. Rivera Rivera is passionate about improving the related services for this population, particularly in the area of fair and valid evaluations. To this aim she has created Professional Development for Related Service Providers, Teachers and Interpreters, and procedures on when and how to request interpreters for an evaluation within the Related Services Department. Ms. Rivera Rivera is also a lecturer for Boston University and Emerson College, presenting seminars on Best Practices for Working with Bilingual Students.

A native from Puerto Rico she acquired her Master of Science in Speech Language Pathology from the University of Puerto Rico, Medical Science Campus and a Bachelor's Degree in Special Education from the same University, Rio Piedras Campus.

Learner Outcomes

Upon completion of this course, participants will be able to:

  • Describe the typical bilingual student
  • List the stages of second language acquisition 
  • Develop a process for determining who should NOT be referred for a speech-language evaluation
  • Name important considerations when assessing a bilingual student


  • 10 minutes: Introduction and Video Reflection
  • 10 minutes: Cultural Competence/Bilingualism
  • 20 minutes: Stages of Second Language Acquisition
  • 20 minutes: Important Considerations When Assessing a Bilingual Student
  • 40 minutes: Case Studies
  • 15 minutes: Quick Recommendations for Bilingual Evaluations
  • 5 minutes: Questions/Evaluations

Financial disclosure: Rebecca Rivera Rivera receives a salary from the Boston Public schools. She receives speaking fees for lecturing at Boston University and Emerson College. She is receiving an honorarium for this presentation.

Non-financial disclosure: Rebecca is a member of MSHA and a member of ASHA.

ASHA requires participation in the CEU Registry to receive CEUs. If you are not part of ASHA’s CEU Registry, the Certificate of Completion will serve as documentation for ASHA CMHs.

ASHA CE Provider approval and use of the Brand Block does not imply endorsement of course content, specific products, or clinical procedures.

Vision Statement

The Massachusetts Speech-Language-Hearing Association will be recognized as an authority and resource in the fields of Audiology and Speech-Language Pathology by legislative bodies, related professional associations and consumers.

© Massachusetts Speech-Language Hearing Association

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Mailing Address

Massachusetts Speech-Language Hearing Association
465 Waverley Oaks Road, Suite 421, Waltham, MA 02452

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