Location: United States |  Change Location
Male flipping through Corwin book

Hands-on, Practical Guidance for Educators

From math, literacy, equity, multilingual learners, and SEL, to assessment, school counseling, and education leadership, our books are research-based and authored by experts on topics most relevant to what educators are facing today.



Seven Steps to Separating Difference From Disability

Based on the RTI model, this comprehensive book provides seven steps to determining appropriate instruction, intervention, and services for culturally and linguistically diverse students.

Full description

Product Details
  • Grade Level: PreK-12, Elementary, Secondary
  • ISBN: 9781412971607
  • Published By: Corwin
  • Year: 2010
  • Page Count: 176
  • Publication date: October 22, 2010

Price: $39.95

Price: $39.95
Volume Discounts applied in Shopping Cart

For Instructors

Request Review Copy

When you select 'request review copy', you will be redirected to Sage Publishing (our parent site) to process your request.



"This is a complete book for practitioners, helping me determine at what stage in the process my child study team is and where we should go next."
—Margarete Couture, Principal, Seneca Central School District, Interlaken, NY

"This book contributes significantly to the body of literature on RTI. No professional library will be complete without this book for addressing the multicultural perspective."
—Karen Kozy-Landress, Speech/Language Pathologist, MILA Elementary School, Merritt Island, FL

Ensure appropriate placement and services for your school's diverse students!

When a culturally and linguistically diverse (CLD) student struggles in school, how can you tell whether language or cultural differences are the cause, or if the student has a learning or behavioral disability? Because the reason can be difficult to pinpoint, having the right assessment process in place is crucial. Seven Steps to Separating Difference From Disability shows how educators can adapt the widely used Response to Intervention (RTI) model to make sound decisions regarding a student's education.

Catherine Collier presents a framework that breaks down the process into seven clear steps for determining each student's unique strengths and needs, helping educators make appropriate decisions regarding resources, referrals, and integrated services. Principals, school administrators, and RTI team members will find:

  • Instruction, intervention, and assessment techniques specific to the challenges faced by limited-English-proficient (LEP) students and English language learners (ELLs)
  • A step-by-step process that works within an RTI framework, supporting collaboration among teachers, specialists, and administrators
  • Realistic, research-based guidance on key considerations such as cognitive learning style, language acquisition, acculturation, and the role of family and community
  • A running case study that demonstrates the book's strategies in action

Develop your team's ability to distinguish between learning differences and disabilities so you can better serve all students!


Key features

This book contains:

  • A 7-step process for separating difference from disability within an RTI framework
  • Resource materials for implementing the process
  • Reproducible forms
  • Recommended reading materials
  • Case studies
  • Self-study assessment worksheet
  • Glossary


Catherine Collier photo

Catherine Collier

Learn more about Catherine Collier's PD offerings

Catherine Collier, Ph.D. has over 45 years experience in equity, cross-cultural, bilingual, and special education. Dr. Collier is a nationally recognized expert on diverse learners with learning and behavior needs. She established and directed the Chinle Valley School, Dine Bitsiis Baa Aha Yaa, bilingual services for Navajo students with severe and multiple disabilities for the Navajo Nation. She was the director of a teacher-training program, Ikayurikiit Unatet for the University of Alaska for seven years, preparing Yup’ik Eskimo paraprofessionals for certification as bilingual preschool, elementary, and special educators. She was an itinerant (diagnostician/special education) for Child Find in remote villages in Alaska. For eight years, Dr. Collier worked with the BUENO Center for Multicultural Education, Research, and Evaluation at the University of Colorado, Boulder, where she created and directed the Bilingual Special Education Curriculum/Training project (BISECT), a nationally recognized effort. She is active in social justice activities for culturally and linguistically diverse learners and families. She started the first bilingual special education programs for the Navajo Nation and the White Mountain Apache. She is currently the director of the national professional development project Curriculum Integration for Responsive, Crosscultural, Language Education (CIRCLE) at Western Washington University. She works extensively with school districts on professional and program development for at-risk diverse learners. Dr. Collier provides technical assistance to university, local, and state departments of education regarding programs serving at-risk cognitively, culturally and linguistically diverse learners. She works with national organizations to provide professional development in the intersection of crosscultural, multilingual, diversity, special needs issues in education.

Table of Contents

Table of Contents



1. Building and Sustaining a Foundation for Learning

Our Diverse Students

Enculturation and the CLD Student


José Case Study

2. Establishing and Supporting Resiliency

Cognition and Language

A Brief Review of Language Acquisition Issues

Cognitive Learning Style

José Case Study

3. Instructional Intervention and Differentiated Instruction

Culture and Language

Cognitive Learning Style


Sociolinguistic Development


José Case Study

4. Intensive Intervention and Progress Monitoring

Asking the Right Questions

How to Use the Information

José Case Study

5. Resolution or Referral


Adaptation of Assessments

José Case Study

6. Integrated Services

Bias in Service Plans

Emotional and Behavioral Disorders

Intellectual Exceptionalities

Learning Disabilities

Integrating Special Needs and CLD Needs

José Case Study

7. Maintaining and Sustaining CLDE Programs

Service Options

Teacher Preparation

Specific Skills and Competencies for Teachers

José Case Study







Price: $39.95
Volume Discounts applied in Shopping Cart

For Instructors

Request Review Copy

When you select 'request review copy', you will be redirected to Sage Publishing (our parent site) to process your request.