There are ample research and position papers advocating response-to-intervention (RTI) frameworks to address the academic struggles of students identified as English language learners (ELLs) and to prevent inequitable outcomes such as overrepresentation in special education. However, some scholars have questioned how RTI is conceptualized and implemented with ELLs. This systematic literature review explores how the existing research on RTI for ELLs has addressed (a) the quality and appropriateness of Tier 1 practices for ELLs and (b) linguistic factors as contexts that impact this quality. A key finding is that current research is not sufficiently linked to general education instruction. Thus, we suggest that future RTI research address instruction for ELLs in general education settings, including the incorporation of Title I supports, bilingual education and language acquisition programs, and culturally responsive pedagogy into Tier 1 universal interventions.