This paper is a review on the assessment considerations for English language learners (ELLs). It provides an in depth examination of the disproportionate representation of ELLs in special education programs in the U.S. so that it can represent a model for the current Turkish special education programs that may have more immigrant and refugee students with an increasing Syrian student population at schools. Specifically, this paper focuses on the following key constructs in the representation of second language learners in special education programs: (a) considerations for assessment processes of ELL students and students with learning disabilities (i.e., shared characteristics) (b) assessment processes for identification of ELLs and students with learning disabilities (c) validity and fairness of standardized assessments for eligibility determination (d) referral practices for ELLs and (e) implications for future research. This paper also provides implications for assessment considerations at schools.
English language learners, special education, disproportionate placement, assessment considerations