Language Testing for Language Teachers

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„Schoolchildren around the world are constantly assessed, whether to monitor their educational progress, or for governments to evaluate the quality of school systems“ (Fulcher and Davidson, 2007, xix).

What is assessed?
What does this assessment look like?
How are abilities tested?
What does a test result say about a child in school, the teacher, the curriculum, the school, the school system?
What is at stake if one test is just barely passed by the test taker, or if another test results in exclusively excellent marks?
How can language skills, as various as they might be, be assessed in a test?
Should children be taught more than what will be assessed later?

This course takes a look at international high and low stakes tests, familiarizes students with Bildungsstandards, Rahmenplänen and testing theory. It should critically evaluate tests, Klausuren, Prüfungen from English classrooms from German schools, discuss aspects of teaching in the light of PISA, DESI and Zentralabitur andlook in detail at newly regulated forms of assessment in schools like mündliche Note and the assessment of Hörverstehen.
Learning outcomes:
The successful student will be able
- to explain and discuss aspects of testing theory
- to formulate assessment guidelines for a variety of language competences
- to analyse test items on the basis of testing theory criteria, create successful test items and evaluate test items within a conglomerate of items
- to critically evaluate a range of different tests

Basic reading: Fulcher, Glenn and Fred Davidson (2007) Language Testing and Assessment. An advanced resource book. Routledge, London.