Friday, December 28, 2012

Applied Linguistics Handouts: Testing Revisited

Applied Linguitics       Dr. Dalia
3rd Year

Testing Revisited 

Summary of Previous Lecture
  • Definition of test Explaining its different parts 
  • Three requirements of a test 
  • Assumptions necessary for using tests 
  • Cognitive Objectives (6 levels)
Kinds of Tests
  • Note: each depends on its specific purpose and the criterion to be measured
  • Proficiency Test
    • They are designed to measure people’s ability in language.
    • These tests are not on any previous courses the candidates may have taken. E.g.: TOEFL tests

      Instructions: Please describe and comment on the situation in the picture below.
  • Diagnostic and Placement Tests 
    • They are used to identify the students’ strengths and weaknesses in order to improve performance.
    • They are related to creating profiles for students that will determine what kind of teaching is necessary.
  • Placement Tests:
    • It is a test to assign students to courses :a test given to students entering a school, college, or university to find the most appropriate courses or classes for them
    • They are intended to provide information which will nelp to classify the students according to their skills with different levels.
    • Exams specifying level for conversation courses in American Centre.
  • Achievement Tests:
    • In contrast to proficiency tests, these tests are directly related to language courses. Their purpose is to measure how successful the students or the courses themselves have been in achieving the objectives. Achievement tests are divided to:
    • Progress achievement tests Final achievement tests.
  • Aptitude Test:
    • The aptitude test is a measure that indicates whether a student is likely to learn “a second language" readily or not.
    • It is generally given before the student begins language study.
    • A test designed to measure the ability of a person to develop skills or acquire knowledge.
    • Example of Aptitude Test: Why take Computer Aptitude test?
      • Take this self-assessment test to find out if you have the aptitude to become a successful computer professional.
      • The Computer Aptitude Test helps you decide if computer careers are for you. It is a scientifically validated test and may save you thousands of dollars and valuable time. Take this test before you enroll in any computer schools.
  • What does CAT measure?
    • This test measures your analytical and problem-solving skills. It also measures how logically you think, how much attention you pay to details, and how closely you follow rules. These skills are required for computer professions.
    • Sample Questions
      • Susan can type 10 pages in 5 minutes. Mary can type 5 pages in 10 minutes. Working together, how many pages can they type in 30 minutes?
        • A. 15
        • B. 20
        • C. 25
        • D. 65 
        • E. 75
      • Consider the following series: 3, 4, 6, 9, 13,_What comes next?
        • A. 15
        • B. 16
        • C. 17
        • D. 18
        • E. 19
Types of Tests
  • Objective vs. Subjective Tests
  • Direct vs. Indirect Tests
  • Discrete-Point vs. Integrative Tests
  • Objective vs. Subjective Tests
    • These tests are distinguished on the basis of the manner in which they are scored.
    • An objective test is the one that may be scored by comparing examinee responses with an established set of acceptable responses or scoring key.
    • A subjective test requires scoring by opinionated judgment, hopefully based on insight and expertise, on the part of the scorer.
    • Objective tests:
      • If no judgment is required from the scorer, the test is classified as an objective one.
      • Multiple Choice questions - True-False - Matching - Fill-in-the-Blank
    • Subjective Tests:
      • If judgment is required, the test is said to be subjective.
      • Essay writing - Problem solving - Oral exams - Short answer Exams
  • Direct vs. Indirect Tests
    • Certain tests, such as ratings of language use in real communicative situations, are testing language performance directly.
    • Other tests, such as multiple-choice recognition tests, are indirectly tapping true language performance and therefore are less valid for measuring language proficiency.
  • Discrete point vs. Integrative Tests
    • Discrete point tests refer to testing of one element at a time, item by item.
    • They are designed to measure knowledge or performance in very restricted areas of the target language.
    • Thus a test of ability to use correctly the perfect tenses of English verbs or to supply correct prepositions in a cloze passage may be termed a discrete-point test.
    • Integrative Tests
      • Integrative tests require the candidate to combine many language elements to complete the task.
      • They tap a greater variety of language abilities concurrently and therefore may have greater value in measuring overall language proficiency. Examples of integrative tests are random cloze, dictation, & oral interviews.
      • Cloze Test: (Fixed-ratio deletion; rational deletion) (Exact word - acceptable word) dictations and cloze tests combined (partial dictation; oral cloze).
  • Communicative Tests
    • Communicative language tests are intended to be a measure of how the testees are able to use language in real life situations. In testing productive skills, emphasis Is placed on appropriateness rather than on ability to form grammatically correct sentences. In testing receptive skills, emphasis is placed on understanding the communicative intent of the speaker or writer rather than on picking out specific details. And, In fact, the two are often combined in communicative testing, so that the testee must both comprehend and respond in real time.
    • The following is an example of a role play activity
      • Student: You missed class yesterday. Go to the teacher's office and apologize for having missed the class. Ask for the handout from the class. Find out what the homework was.
      • Examiner: You are a teacher. A student who missed your class yesterday comes to your office. Accept her/his apology, but emphasize the Importance of attending classes. You do not have any extra handouts from the class, so suggest mat she/he copy one from a friend. Tefl her/him what the homework was
      • The testee would be assessed on his/her ability to carry out the functions (apologizing, requesting, asking for information, responding to a suggestion, etc.) required by the role.
Testing Reading and Writing
  • Your boss has received a letter from a customer complaining about prob'ems with a coffee maker that he bought six months ago. Your boss has instructed you to check the company policy on returns and repairs and reply to the letter. Read the letter from the customer and the statement of the company policy about returns and repairs below and write a formal business letter to the customer.
Testing Listening and Writing
  • You and two friends would like to see a movie. You call the local multiplex theater. Listen to their recording and fill In the missing information in the chart so that you can discuss it with your friends later.
  • Theater Number    Movie    Starting Times
Features for Types of Language Test (SUMMARY)
  • Language tests can be classified according to five distinctive features:
    • Purpose & use
      • Tests are classified according to the type of decision to be made:
      • Admission decision: selection, entrance, readiness
      • Identification of instructive levels: placement, diagnostic
      • Objectives of the program: progress, achievement, attainment
    • Content (syllabus)
    • Frame of reference
      • The result of language tests can be interpreted in two different ways, depending on the frame of reference.
      • Norm-referenced test: test scores are interpreted in relation to the performance of a particular group of individuals.
      • Criterion-referenced test: with respect to a specific level of domain of ability.
    • Scoring
      • Subjective vs. objective
      • Test method facets: multiple choice, fill-in, cloze, dictation, oral interview, essay
    • Procedure technique