Date of Award

Fall 1982

Document Type

Dissertation - Restricted

Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)



First Advisor

Ivanoff, Ivan

Second Advisor

Topetzes, Nich J.

Third Advisor



Public awareness that inadequate educational services are being provided to Hispanic students have helped spark recent professional questioning about the evaluation of Hispanic children. Hispanic Anglo test performance differences, once accepted as Hispanic deficiencies, have gained increased research attention. Current researchers explain the differences between Hispanic and Anglos as resulting from cultural differences. When a child is presented with test stimulus, there is an implicit assumption that the child will only respond to that stimulus. Review of the literature suggests growing evidence that with the Hispanic child's cultural expectations influence the type of knowledge and the reactions the child will display during testing. When a child approaches a new task or test situation, there is an element of risk. Hispanic children seem less apt to speak up and provide answers to questions under conditions of greater risk or exposure. During testing, the child is under greater risk. The risk will increase during expressive tasks since they require greater participation. The present investigation is a study to ascertain the relationship that exists between cultural diversity as defined by subjects' language affiliation and performance on a standardized language syntax test. The subjects for this study consisted of a total of 216 monolingual Hispanic, bilingual Hispanic, and monolingual Anglo kindergarten students. The bilingual group was further subdivided during analysis into bilingual Spanish dominant and bilingual English dominant. Three statistical techniques were utilized. A oneway analysis of variance was employed to test the significant receptive, expressive, and total language score differences between the language affiliation groups. When statistical significance was found on the F-ratios, Scheffe's t-statistic was computed for paired means to investigate group mean differences. Finally, the analysis of variance (ANOVA) was used to determine the statistical significance between the language affiliation groups when the sex variable was introduced. The results indicate that there were significant differences between the language affiliation groups. No significant performance difference was found between males and females for each language affiliation group.



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