Language Testing Introduction. Aims of the Course The primary purpose of this course is to enable students to become competent in the design, development,
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Aims of the Course The primary purpose of this course is to enable students to become competent in the design, development, and use of language tests. Competence in language testing involves the following:
Aims of the Course 1 ． An understanding of the fundamental considerations that must be addressed at the start of any language testing effort, whether this involves the development of new tests or the selection of existing language tests; 2 ． An understanding of the fundamental issues and concerns in the appropriate use of language tests;
Aims of the Course 3 ． An understanding of the fundamental issues, approaches, and methods used in measurement and evaluation; 4 ． The ability to design, develop, evaluate and use language tests in ways that are appropriate for a given purpose, context, and group of test takers; 5 ． The ability to critically read published research in language testing and information about published tests in order to make informed decisions.
Why Test? Generally speaking, tests serve two purposes: educational and research. Educational purposes Student’s progress Effectiveness of teaching Placement Research Serve research Is served by research
What to test? Language ability Can it be defined? How? Factors affecting performance Linguistic competence Physical characteristics Psychological factors
Measurement Construct validation Generalizability theory Item response theory Criterion referenced measurement
Objective 1 of the book Provide a conceptual foundation for the development of language tests The context that determines the uses of language tests The nature of the language abilities we want to measure The nature of the measurement
Objective 2 of the book Better understanding of the factors that affect performance on language tests
Current Research Research in language acquisition and language teaching Language ability Lado: skills and components framework Oller: pragmatic expectancy grammar Bachman: communicative language proficiency Measurement
Problems Facing Testers Specifying language ability and other affecting factors. e.g. test authenticity Determining how scores behave as quantifications of performance: unidimensional or multi-dimensional
Discussion Think of tests of as many kinds as possible and classify them. Talk about the purposes of the test and the measures to achieve the purposes. Discuss the measurement used in these tests.