Fairness of language tests and testing practices has always been a concern among test developers and test users. In the past decade educational and language assessment researchers have begun to focus directly on fairness and related matters such as test standards, test bias and equity and ethics for testing professionals. The 19th annual Language Testing Research Colloquium held in 1997 in Orlando, Florida, brought this overall concern into sharp focus by having 'Fairness in Language Testing' as its theme. The conference presentations and discussions attempted to understand the concept of fairness, define the scope of the concept and connect it with the concept of validation of test score interpretation. The papers in this volume offer a first introduction to fairness and validation in the field of language assessment.