Skip to main content
×
×
Home

DEVELOPING ASSESSMENT LITERACY

  • Lynda Taylor
Abstract

Language testing and assessment have moved center stage in recent years, whether for educational, employment, or sociopolitical reasons. More and more people are involved in developing tests and using test score outcomes, though often without a background or training in assessment to equip them adequately for this role. Simultaneously, increasing professionalization of the field has led to the generation of standards, ethical codes, and guidelines for good testing practice. Although these can help make assessment practices more transparent and accessible to a wider constituency, they also risk promoting a view of language testing as highly technical and specialized–best left to experts. These trends have implications for both policy and practice. This article reviews efforts to promote understanding of assessment within the field of applied linguistics and within education and society more broadly. The role of professional associations, academic institutions, and commercial organizations in developing assessment literacy is considered, as well as the contribution of published material and other types of training resources. This article reflects on how the international language testing community can encourage the sharing of the core knowledge, skills, and understanding that underpin good quality assessment as widely and accessibly for the benefit of all.

Copyright
References
Hide All
McNamara, T., & Roever, C. (2006). Language testing: The social dimension. Malden, MA, and Oxford, England: Blackwell.
25th anniversary issue. (2008, July). Language Testing, 25 (3). Sage.
Shohamy, E., & Hornberger, N. (2008). (Eds.). Encyclopedia of language and education (2nd ed.): Vol. 7. Language testing and assessment. New York: Springer Science+Business Media.
AERA/APA/NCME. (1999). Standards for educational and psychological testing. Washington, DC: Author.
Alderson, J. C. (2000). Assessing reading. Cambridge, England: Cambridge University Press.
Alderson, J. C., & Wall, D. (Eds.). (1996). Special issue on washback. Language Testing, 13 (3).
Alderson, J. C., Clapham, C., & Wall, D. (1995). Language test construction and evaluation. Cambridge, England: Cambridge University Press.
Allen, P., & Davies, A. (Eds.). (1977). The Edinburgh course in applied linguistics: Vol. 4. Testing and experimental methods. Oxford, England: Oxford University Press.
ALTE Members. (1998). Multilingual glossary of language testing terms. Cambridge, England: UCLES/Cambridge University Press.
Assessment Reform Group. (2002). Assessment for learning: 10 principles. Retrieved November 4, 2008, from http://k1.ioe.ac.uk/tlrp/arg/CIE3.PDF
Association of Language Testers in Europe (ALTE). (1994). Code of practice. Retrieved November 5, 2008, from http://www.alte.org/quality_assurance/index.php
Bachman, L. F. (1990). Fundamental considerations in language testing. Oxford, England: Oxford University Press.
Bachman, L. F. (2000). What, if any, are the limits of our responsibility for fairness in testing? In Kunnan, A. J. (Ed.), Fairness and validation in language assessment. Selected papers from the 19th LTRC, Orlando, Florida (pp. 3941). Cambridge, England: UCLES/Cambridge University Press.
Bachman, L. F., & Palmer, A. (1996). Language testing in practice. Oxford, England: Oxford University Press.
Bailey, K. M., & Brown, J. D. (1995). Language testing courses. What are they? In Cumming, A. & Berwick, R. (Eds.), Validation in language testing (pp. 236256). Clevedon, UK: Multilingual Matters.
Bailey, K. M., & Brown, J. D. (2008). Language testing courses: What are they in 2007? Language Testing, 25 (3), 349383.
Brown, J. D., & Hudson, T. (2002). Criterion-referenced language testing. Cambridge, England: Cambridge University Press.
Buck, G. (2001). Assessing listening. Cambridge, England: Cambridge University Press.
Carroll, B. J. (1980). Testing communicative performance. Oxford, England: Pergamon.
Carroll, J. B. (1961). Fundamental considerations in testing for English language proficiency of foreign students. In Testing the English proficiency of foreign students (pp. 3040). Washington, DC: Center for Applied Linguistics.
Carroll, B. J., & Hall, P. (1985). Make your own language tests: A practical guide to writing language performance tests. Oxford, England: Pergamon.
Chapelle, C., & Douglas, D. (2006). Assessing language through computer technology. Cambridge, England: Cambridge University Press.
Cheng, L. (2005). Changing language teaching through language testing: A washback study. Cambridge, England: UCLES/Cambridge University Press.
Cheng, L., Watanabe, Y., & Curtis, A. (Eds.). (2004). Washback in language testing: Research contexts and methods. London: Erlbaum.
Code of Fair Testing Practices in Education. (2004). Washington, DC: Joint Committee on Testing Practices.
Cohen, A. (1994). Assessing language ability in the classroom (2nd ed.). Boston, MA: Heinle and Heinle.
Davidson, F., & Lynch, B. (2002) Testcraft: A teacher's guide to writing and using language test specifications. New Haven, CT, and London: Yale University Press.
Davies, A. (1990). Principles of language testing. Oxford, England: Blackwell.
Davies, A. (2008a). Textbook trends in teaching language testing. Language Testing, 25 (3), 327347.
Davies, A. (2008b). Assessing academic English: Testing English proficiency 1950–1989–The IELTS solution. Cambridge, England: UCLES/Cambridge University Press.
Davies, A., Brown, A., Elder, C., Hill, K., Lumley, T., & McNamara, T. (1999). Dictionary of language testing. Cambridge, England: UCLES/Cambridge University Press.
Douglas, D. (2000). Assessing languages for specific purposes. Cambridge, England: Cambridge University Press.
Downing, S. M., & Haladyna, T. M. (Eds.). (2006). Handbook of test development. New York: Routledge.
European Association for Language Testing and Assessment (EALTA). (2006). Guidelines for good practice in language testing and assessment. Retrieved November 4, 2008, from http://www.ealta.eu.org/guidelines.htm
Fox, J. (2008). Alternative assessment. In Shohamy, E. & Hornberger, N. (Eds.), Encyclopedia of language and education (2nd ed.): Vol. 7. Language testing and assessment (pp. 97109). New York: Springer Science+Business Media.
Fulcher, G. (2003). Testing second language speaking. London: Longman.
Fulcher, G., & Davidson, F. (2007). Language testing and assessment: An advanced resource book. London: Routledge.
Fulcher, G., & Thrasher, R. (1999/2000). Video FAQs: Introducing topics in language testing. Retrieved November 4, 2008, from http://iltaonline.com/index.php?option=com_weblinks&catid=14&Itemid=23
Green, A. (2007). IELTS washback in context: Preparation for academic writing in higher education. Cambridge, England: UCLES/Cambridge University Press.
Hamp-Lyons, L. (2008). Best practice in writing assessment. In Taylor, L. & Weir, C. J. (Eds.), Multilingualism and assessment: Achieving transparency, assuring quality, sustaining diversity. Proceedings of the ALTE Berlin Conference May 2005 (pp. 321335). Cambridge, England: UCLES/Cambridge University Press.
Harris, D. (1969). Testing English as a second language. New York: McGraw-Hill.
Hawkey, R. (2004). A modular approach to testing English language skills: The development of the certificates in English language skills (CELS) examinations. Cambridge, England: UCLES/Cambridge University Press.
Hawkey, R. (2006). Impact theory and practice: Studies of the IELTS test and Progetto Lingue 2000. Cambridge, England: UCLES/Cambridge University Press.
Hawkey, R. (2009). Examining FCE and CAE: Key issues and recurring themes in developing the First Certificate in English and Certificate in Advanced English Exams. Cambridge, England: UCLES/Cambridge University Press.
Heaton, B. (1975). Writing English language tests. London: Longman.
Henning, G. (1987). A guide to language testing. Cambridge, MA: Newbury House.
Hughes, A. (1989). Testing for language teachers. Cambridge, England: Cambridge University Press.
Hughes, A. (2003). Testing for language teachers (2nd ed.). Cambridge, England: Cambridge University Press.
Inbar-Lourie, O. (2008). Constructing a language assessment knowledge base: A focus on language assessment courses. Language Testing, 25 (3), 385402.
International Language Testing Association (ILTA). (2001). Code of ethics. Retrieved November 3, 2008, from http://iltaonline.com/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=57&Itemid=47
International Language Testing Association (ILTA). (2007). Guidelines for practice. Retrieved November 3, 2008, from http://iltaonline.com/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=122&Itemid=133
Kunnan, A. J. (2000). Fairness and justice for all. In Kunnan, A. J. (Ed.), Fairness and validation in language assessment. Selected papers from the 19th LTRC, Orlando, Florida (pp. 114). Cambridge, England: UCLES/Cambridge University Press.
Kunnan, A. J. (2004). Test fairness. In Milanovic, M. & Weir, C. J. (Eds.), European language testing in a global context (pp. 2748). Cambridge, England: UCLES/Cambridge University Press.
Kunnan, A. J. (2008). Towards a model of test evaluation: Using the test fairness and test context frameworks. In Taylor, L. & Weir, C. J. (Eds.), Multilingualism and assessment: Achieving transparency, assuring quality, sustaining diversity. Proceedings of the ALTE Berlin Conference May 2005 (pp. 229251). Cambridge, England: UCLES/Cambridge University Press.
Lado, R. (1961). Language testing. London: Longman.
Lantolf, J., & Poehner, M. (2008). Dynamic assessment. In Shohamy, E. & Hornberger, N. (Eds.), Encyclopedia of language and education (2nd ed.): Vol. 7. Language testing and assessment (pp. 273284). New York: Springer Science+Business Media.
Luoma, S. (2004). Assessing speaking. Cambridge, England: Cambridge University Press.
Madsen, H. (1983). Techniques in testing. New York and Oxford, England: Oxford University Press.
Malone, M. (2008). Training in language assessment. In Shohamy, E. & Hornberger, N. (Eds.), Encyclopedia of language and education (2nd ed.): Vol. 7. Language testing and assessment (pp. 225239). New York: Springer Science+Business Media.
McKay, P. (2006). Assessing young language learners. Cambridge, England: Cambridge University Press.
McNamara, T. (1996). Measuring second language performance. London: Longman.
McNamara, T. (2000). Language testing. Oxford, England: Oxford University Press.
McNamara, T., & Roever, C. (2006). Language testing: The social dimension. Malden, MA, and Oxford, England: Blackwell.
Melbourne, LTC. (1997). Mark my words [Video series]. Melbourne: Melbourne Language Testing Centre.
Menken, K., & Shohamy, E. (Eds.) (2008). Special issue on No Child Left Behind and U.S. language education policy. Language Policy, 7 (3).
Messick, S. (1989). Validity. In Linn, R. L. (Ed.), Educational measurement (3rd ed.) (pp. 13103). Washington, DC: American Council on Education and the National Council on Measurement in Education.
Messick, S. (1996). Validity and washback in language testing. Language Testing, 13 (4), 241256.
North, B. (2008). The CEFR levels and descriptor scales. In Taylor, L. & Weir, C. J. (Eds.), Multilingualism and assessment: Achieving transparency, assuring quality, sustaining diversity. Proceedings of the ALTE Berlin Conference May 2005 (pp. 2166). Cambridge, England: UCLES/Cambridge University Press.
Oller, J. W. (1979). Language tests at school: A pragmatic approach. London: Longman.
O'Sullivan, B. (2006). Issues in testing business English: The revision of the Cambridge Business English Certificates. Cambridge, England: UCLES/Cambridge University Press.
Purpura, J. (2004). Assessing grammar. Cambridge, England: Cambridge University Press.
Rea-Dickins, P. (2008). Classroom-based language assessment. In Shohamy, E. & Hornberger, N. (Eds.), Encyclopedia of language and education (2nd ed.): Vol. 7. Language testing and assessment (pp. 257271). New York: Springer Science+Business Media.
Read, J. (2000). Assessing vocabulary. Cambridge, England: Cambridge University Press.
Saville, N. (2005). An interview with John Trim at 80. Language Assessment Quarterly, 2 (4), 263288.
Shaw, S. D., & Weir, C. J. (2007). Examining writing: Research and practice in assessing second language writing. Cambridge, England: UCLES/Cambridge University Press.
Shohamy, E. (2008). Introduction. In Shohamy, E. & Hornberger, N. (Eds.), Encyclopedia of language and education (2nd ed.): Vol. 7. Language testing and assessment (pp. xiii–xxii). New York: Springer Science+Business Media.
Spolsky, B. (1995). Measured words. Oxford, England: Oxford University Press.
Spolsky, B. (2008). Introduction–Language testing at 25: Maturity and responsibility? Language Testing, 25 (3), 297305.
Stansfield, C. W. (2008). Where we have been and where we should go. Language Testing, 25 (3), 311326.
Stiggins, G. (1997). Student centered classroom assessment. Upper Saddle River, NJ: Prentice Hall.
Stoynoff, S., & Chapelle, C. (2005). ESOL tests and testing: A resource for teachers and program administrators. Alexandria, VA: TESOL.
Taylor, C., & Angelis, P. (2008). The evolution of the TOEFL. In Chapelle, C., Enright, M. K., & Jamieson, J. M. (Eds.), Building a validity argument for the Test of English as a Foreign Language. New York and London: Routledge.
Vallette, R. (1967). Modern language tests: A handbook. New York: Harcourt Brace and World.
Wall, D. (2005). The impact of high-stakes examinations on classroom teaching: A case study using insights from testing and innovation theory. Cambridge, England: UCLES/Cambridge University Press.
Weigle, S. C. (2002). Assessing writing. Cambridge, England: Cambridge University Press.
Weir, C. J. (1990). Communicative language testing. Upper Saddle River, NJ: Prentice Hall.
Weir, C. J. (1993). Understanding and developing language tests. Upper Saddle River, NJ: Prentice Hall.
Weir, C. J. (2005). Language testing and validation: An evidence-based approach. Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan.
Weir, C. J., & Milanovic, M. (2003). Continuity and innovation: Revising the Cambridge Proficiency in English Examination 1913–2002. Cambridge, England: UCLES/Cambridge University Press.
Recommend this journal

Email your librarian or administrator to recommend adding this journal to your organisation's collection.

Annual Review of Applied Linguistics
  • ISSN: 0267-1905
  • EISSN: 1471-6356
  • URL: /core/journals/annual-review-of-applied-linguistics
Please enter your name
Please enter a valid email address
Who would you like to send this to? *
×

Metrics

Full text views

Total number of HTML views: 0
Total number of PDF views: 0 *
Loading metrics...

Abstract views

Total abstract views: 0 *
Loading metrics...

* Views captured on Cambridge Core between <date>. This data will be updated every 24 hours.

Usage data cannot currently be displayed