This accessible book examines issues such as test design, the rating process, validity, measurement, and the social dimension of language testing. It looks at both traditional and newer forms of language assessment, and the challenges posed by new views.
"'... provides with clarity and concision all the teacher or trainee will need to know in this area.' - EL Gazette"
"'Handy, pocket-sized brief survey for readers new to the subject containing an up-to-date overview, short readings and study questions, references and glossary.'" - The Teacher Trainer
1 Testing, testing . . . What is a language test?
Understanding language testing
Types of test
The test-criterion relationship
2 Communication and the design of language tests
Discrete point tests
Integrative and pragmatic tests
Communicative language tests
Models of communicative ability
3 The testing cycle
Understanding the constraints
Authenticity of response
Fixed and constructed response formats
4 The rating process
Establishing a rating procedure
The problem with raters
Establishing a framework for making judgements
Holistic and analytic ratings
5 Validity: testing the test
Threats to test validity
Test method and test construct
The impact of tests
Quality control for raters
Investigating the properties of individual test items
Norm-referenced and criterion-referenced measurement
New approaches to measurement
7 The social character of language tests
The institutional character of assessment
Assessment and social policy
Assessment and educational policy
The social responsibility of the language tester
Ethical language testing
Codes of professional ethics for language testers
Critical language testing
8 New directions-and dilemmas?
Computers and language testing
Technology and the testing of speaking
Dilemmas: whose performance?