English Language Development Standards

woman writing on blackboard

A tool to help educators support language development in multilingual learners

WIDA English Development (ELD) Standards represent the social, instructional and academic language students use to engage with peers, educators and the curriculum in schools. The Standards highlight the language needed to meet academic expectations as described by state, college and career readiness standards, and other content standards such as Next Generation Science Standards.

    Using the Standards for Instruction

    The ELD Standards serve as a resource for planning and implementing language instruction and assessment for multilingual learners as they learn academic content. Educators can use the standards to:

    • Promote and guide students’ English language development
    • Aid in the development of curriculum, instruction and assessment
    • Encourage and maximize the use of multiple language resources in the classroom
    • Support and frame the collaboration among educators of multilingual learners and instructional teams who serve them to ensure educational equity for all students

    The WIDA ELD Standards work along with content standards to ensure students engage in the learning of the content standards as they continue to develop English.

    Get the Standards Guide

    For ideas on how to incorporate the standards in your classroom, see the ELD Standards in Action page.

    *Please see the Teaching Internationally page for how the ELD Standards are used in international contexts.

    The Five Standards

    The Standards provide educators with a connection between language development and academic content.

    • Standard 1 – Social and Instructional Language
      English language learners communicate for social and instructional purposes within the school setting.
    • Standard 2 – Language of Language Arts
      English language learners communicate information, ideas and concepts necessary for academic success in the content area of language arts.
    • Standard 3 – Language of Mathematics
      English language learners communicate information, ideas and concepts necessary for academic success in the content area of mathematics.
    • Standard 4 – Language of Science
      English language learners communicate information, ideas and concepts necessary for academic success in the content area of science.
    • Standard 5 – Language of Social Studies
      English language learners communicate information, ideas and concepts necessary for academic success in the content area of social studies.

    2012 Standards Resources

    To purchase copies of the 2012 Amplification of the English Language Development Standards that are color printed and bound, visit the WIDA Store.

    For detailed information about the WIDA Standards Framework, see the following resources:

    2007 Standards Resources

    The 2012 Standards Resources are an update and amplification of the 2007 English Language Proficiency Standards Resources. For information on the 2007 Standards, see the resources below.

    Prime V2 for Standards Correlation

    If you would like to find instructional materials that have gone through the WIDA PRIME V2 correlation process to determine how well they correlate with the WIDA English or Spanish Language Development Standards, or to receive training on how to correlate educational materials, please visit our PRIME V2 website.