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San Diego State University

SDSU Department of Dual Language and English Learner Education (formerly Policy Studies in Language & Cross-Cultural Education)

Dr. Karen Cadiero-Kaplan

Dr. Karen Cadiero-Kaplan

Dr. Karen Cadiero-Kaplan is a Professor at San Diego State University in the Department Chair of Dual Language and English Learner Education. She also serves as faculty in the Joint PhD program with Claremont Graduate University.

Dr. Cadiero-Kaplan began her career as a special education teacher and teaching English as a Second Language at the high school and community college levels. She has continued her career as a professor and a provider of pre-service and in-service teacher professional development in English language acquisition for students to teachers and administrators.

Most recently, she was a visiting educator to the California Department of Education where she was the first to lead the English Learner Support Division. Between 2012 and 2014, Dr. Cadiero-Kaplan directed all policy and programs for English Learners and Migrant Education for the state. Her leadership included representing California at a national level by participating and presenting on research and policy in meetings convened by the US Department of Education Title III, Office of English Language Acquisition, and Office of Migrant Education, as well as on subcommittees focused on English Learners with The Council of Chief State School Officers. Under her leadership the 2012 ELD Standards were adopted and she played a significant role in informing areas of assessment and curriculum with Common Core Standards.

Dr. Cadiero-Kaplan has a range of publications concerned with the role of literacy education and language policies that impact curriculum development and teacher’s professional development. Most notable, is her her book, The Literacy Curriculum & Bilingual Education: A Critical Examination. In addition to peer reviewed research articles and presentations, she has also published policy briefs as part of her leadership as President (2009-2011) of Californians Together; and from 2006-2007 as President of the California Association of Teachers of English to Speakers of Other Languages (CATESOL).

Dr. Cadiero-Kaplan received her doctorate in Education, with an emphasis on Critical Social Justice and Literacy from Claremont Graduate University/San Diego State University joint Doctoral Program. She earned her Master of Arts degree in Multi-Cultural and Cross-Cultural Education with certification in Special Education and Linguistics from San Diego State University. She received her Bachelors of Arts Degree from the University of San Diego, in Psychology and Elementary Education.

Education and Background
  • 2001: Ph.D., Education: Curriculum & Development for Multicultural Education & Critical Pedagogy
    Awarded by: Claremont Graduate University and San Diego State University Joint Doctoral Program
  • 1994: Master of Arts, Education: Multi-Cultural Education Teacher Development Awarded by: San Diego State University, College of Education
  • 1989: Bachelor of Arts: Psychology and Elementary Education Awarded by: University of San Diego, College of Arts & Sciences
Professional Affiliations


  • Affiliate Council Leader: Teachers of English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL) (Elected 2009 – Term of Service: 2009-2012)
  • President, (2008-present). Californians Together: Statewide coalition of parents, teachers, education advocates and civil rights groups committed to securing equal access to quality education for all children.
  • Executive Board Liaison to Californians Together (2008-present). California Association of Teachers of English to Speakers of Other Languages (CATESOL).
  • President, (2005-2007). California Association of Teachers of English to Speakers of Other Languages (CATESOL).



Projects, Grants, and Research

  • Co-Principal Investigator: Professional Development for Pre-service Bilingual Special Education Teachers of English Learners: Acquisition of Language Skills and Academic Literacy (ALAS). July 2007-August, 2012. Co- Principal Investigator: Dr. Alberto Ochoa. Website:
    The overall goal of the ALAS project is to address the need for qualified bilingual (English-Spanish) special education teachers in California who are trained to teach K-8 English language learners (ELLs) with special needs. This dual credential teacher preparation program is designed for Bilingual individuals proficient in Spanish and English seeking a Bilingual Credential and who are interested in obtaining an additional credential as an Education Specialist in Mild / Moderate disabilities. This is an intensive two-year credential program for highly committed individuals interested in meeting the specific needs of English language learners in California.
  • Project Investigator: Family Literacy Coaching. 2008-present. California Department of Education.
    The Family Literacy Coaching grant assists in providing additional technical assistance to local Even Start projects. Specifically, the grant supports technical assistance and professional development to support California Even Start program projects and personnel in the four program components of Adult Education, Early Childhood Education (ECE), Parenting, and Parent Child Interaction. Project Director has agreed to provide coaching support and training to local projects. The grant will support program expenditures in the following areas: 1) Conduct a minimum of six on-site technical assistance visits to local Even Start projects 2) Host a minimum of four local project network meetings 3) Conduct a minimum of three monitoring project reviews for the state 4) Assist with the delivery of four state trainings for Center for Improving the Readiness of Children for Learning and Education (CIRCLE).
  • *Project Investigator: Even Start Family Literacy Program: Project ACCESS, 2008-present. California Department of Education.
    The ACCESS Even Start program incorporates all four components of Even Start (Adult Education, Parenting, PCILA and Early Childhood Education) On a weekly basis the program is designed to provide eligible participants with classes five days a week from 8:00 am-12:00 p.m. Twenty hours of adult education, twenty hours of early childhood education (Preschool 3-5years), and three hours of parenting and parent child interaction (PCILA) activities. Preschool children are the focus age of the Family Access program. The project serves Edison and Balboa Elementary Schools in the San Diego City School.


  • Books
    • Peregoy, S., & Boyle, O. (2008). Reading, writing and learning in ESL: A resource book for teaching K-12 English learners(5th Edition) (K. Cadiero-Kaplan, Contributing Author). Pearson Allyn & Bacon: Boston, MA.
    • Cadiero-Kaplan, K. (2004). The literacy curriculum and bilingual education: A critical examination. New York: Peter Lang Publishers, Counter Point Series. Series Editors: Joe Kincheloe and Shirley Steinberg.
    • Cadiero-Kaplan, A. Ochoa, J. Rodriguez & N. Kuhlman (Eds.). (2006). The living work of teachers: Ideology and practice with and in community. Los Angeles, CA: The California Association for Bilingual Education.
  • Articles & Book Chapters
    • Cadiero-Kaplan, K. (2010). Naming the world & becoming a being in the world: One teacher's journey on the path of empowerment. In A. Colon-Muniz, P. Park, & T. Wilson (Eds.),Memories of Paulo. Rotterdam: Sense Publishers.
    • Heck, M. & Cadiero-Kaplan, K. (2010). Factors of Creative Conflict: Caring Relationships with Diverse Others Visual Art Experiences In Tonya Huber (Series & Vol. Ed.), In Teaching Learning Indigenous, Intercultural Worldviews: International Perspectives on Social Justice and Human Rights Series: Vol. 3. Storied inquiries in international landscapes: An anthology of educational research. Charlotte, NC: Information Age Publishing.
    • Cadiero-Kaplan, K. & Billings, E. (2008). Developing socio-political active teachers: A model for teacher professional development. Forum on Public Policy Journal. Forum on Public Policy Online, Spring 2008 edition. August 22, 2009).
    • Cadiero-Kaplan, K. & Rodriguez, J. L. (2008). The preparation of highly qualified teachers for English language learners: Educational responsiveness for unmet needs. Equity & Excellence in Education, 41(3), 372 -387.
    • Cadiero-Kaplan, K., Berta-Avila, M., & Flores, J. (2008). Highly qualified bilingual teachers: Developing standards for bilingual authorization. Multilingual Educator, pp. 22-25.
    • Cadiero-Kaplan, K. (2008). California standards for bilingual teaching authorization approved. CATESOL News, 39(4), 3.
    • Cadiero-Kaplan, K. (2007). In. G. Anderson (Ed.), Bilingual Education. Encyclopedia of activism and social justice (pp. 236-239). Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage Publications.
    • Cadiero-Kaplan, K. (2007). Critically examining beliefs, orientations, ideologies & practices towards literacy instruction: A process of praxis. In L. Bartolomé (Ed.),Ideologies in education: Unmasking the trap of teacher neutrality (pp. 117-154). New York: Peter Lang Publishing.
    • Cadiero-Kaplan, K. & Berta Avila, M. (2007). Bilingual education. In D. Gabbard (Ed.), Knowledge and power in the global economy: The effects of school reform in a neo liberal/neo conservative age (pp. 327-338). Mahwah NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum.
    • Cadiero-Kaplan, K., Berta-Avila, M., & Flores, J. (2007). CCTC and the process for reauthorization of bilingual teacher preparation standards: A critical-historical perspective.Association of Mexican American Educators Journal, 1-13.
    • Cadiero-Kaplan, K. (2006). Literacy ideologies: Critically engaging the English curriculum. In K. Cadiero-Kaplan, A. Ochoa, J. Rodriguez & N. Kuhlman (Eds.), Reclaiming our voices: Literacy ideology, teacher's beliefs, language policy and parent voice (pp. 1-20). Los Angeles, CA: California Association of Bilingual Education.
    • Cadiero-Kaplan, K. & Ochoa, A. (2006). Evaluating programs for English language learners: Possibilities for bi-literacy in urban school districts in California. In P. Anderson, K. Hayes, D. Griffith, D. & J. Kincheloe (Eds.), The Praeger handbook of urban education (pp. 397-408). Westport, CT: Greenwood Publishing Group.
    • Cadiero-Kaplan, K. (2005). Teachers & technology: Engaging pedagogy & practice. In L. Tan Wee Hin and R. Subramaniam (Eds.), Handbook of research on literacy in technology at the K-12 level. (pp. 452-468) Hershey, PA: Idea Group Publishing.
    • Hinchey, P. & Cadiero-Kaplan, K. (2005). Political education for teachers: A matter of survival. The Journal for Critical Education Policy Studies, 3(2). Available online at
    • Ochoa, A. & Cadiero-Kaplan, K. (2004). Towards promoting bi-literacy and academic achievement: Educational programs for high school Latino English language learners. The High School Journal, 87(3), 27-43.
    • Wang, M.J.. & Cadiero-Kaplan, K. (2003). Computer-assisted language learning-CALL. In Kovalchick, A. & Dawson, K. (Eds.), Educational and technology; An encyclopedia (pp. 134-152). Santa Barbara, CA: ABC-CLIO Publishers.
    • Cadiero-Kaplan, K. (2002). Literacy ideologies: Critically engaging the language arts curriculum. Language Arts Journal, 79(5), 372-392.



Full Curriculum Vita