The assessment of language learners is having a growing impact in English language teaching and applied linguistics. A formal evaluation of students writing . “Writing is a key skill in second language learning and all teachers need to evaluate their students’ writing abilities. The issues surrounding the assessment of. Sara Cushing Weigle – Assessing – Ebook download as PDF File .pdf ), Text File .txt) or read book online.

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Furthermore, current instructional practices, at least in the US, em- phasize collaborative writing, peer response, and other forms of inter- action to mitigate many of the challenges of writing discussed above Sperling, In summary, speech and written discourse draw on many of the same linguistic resources and can be used in many cases to meet the same communicative goals.

They point out that variation in writing in different cultures does not reflect inherent differences in thought patterns but rather ‘cultural preferences which make greater use of certain options among the linguistic possibilities’ Grabe and Kaplan Finally, writers may not have an adequately developed task schema for revision: Construct validation refers to the process of determining whether a test is actually measuring what it is intended asseszing measure.

Leaving aside for the moment a precise definition of language proficiency, we use inferences about general language profi- ciency to make decisions such as admission to academic programs, placement into different levels of a language program, exemption from certain coursework, or selection for a particular job. Second, writers may not have adequate working memory to attend to both global and local errors.

Assessing Writing

Another shortcoming of the Hayes model, especially in terms of its usefulness for second-language writing assessment, is the lack of attention paid to linguistic knowledge. These issues will be addressed in more detail in Chapter 5.

In particular, it highlights some important issues in setting tasks for writing assessment, such as the role of genre familiarity in determining task deigle, as mentioned above. This specialized language differs in important ways from spoken language, both in form and in use, as we shall see in Chapter 2, but builds upon linguistic resources that students already possess. It’s now up to us to decide what to do, and once we do we have enough information here to keep us quite busy.

Cushiny task analysis involves documenting the strategies that test takers use to complete test tasks, such as the use of think-aloud Basic considerations in assessing writing 51 protocols to investigate the writing process, as discussed in Chapter 2. As advances in transportation and technology allow people from nations and cultures throughout the world to interact with each other, com- munication across languages becomes ever more essential.


Learn more about Amazon Prime. The first is a lack of specificity in defining the situational variables involved in writing. The rest of Chapter 1 provides an introduction to writing assessment by considering, first of all, the reasons why people use writing in second-language contexts, and second, the types of writing texts people are likely to need to write in a second language, both inside and outside the language classroom.

Assessing Writing – Sara Cushing Weigle – Google Books

Want to Read Currently Reading Read. Reliability in a test of writing can be affected by several factors, including variables related to the writing task ariting e. In parti- cular, I would like to thank Maria Ines Valsecchi and John Bunting aszessing their comments and especially for their enthusiasm about the book at xii Acknowledgements xiii a time cushnig I was having my doubts about ever finishing it. As was dis- cussed in Chapter 2, in some societies, personal writing may be highly valued, while in others, writing is used to pay homage to existing scholarship rather than to present one’s own point of view.

Refresh and try again. Third, while writing tests are frequently scored by raters who are unknown to the examinees and vice versathe audience for most academic writing is the students’ instructor. McNamara provides a useful distinction between a strong sense and a weak sense of performance assessment in language testing.

The primary purpose is to make inferences about language ability, and the secondary purpose is to make decisions based on those inferences. This model is reproduced here as Table 1. Withoutabox Submit to Film Festivals. I would also like to thank Cindy Lutenbacher for giving me coffee, beer, and a shoulder to cry on, and Jim Purpura for lending humor and support from afar. Specifically, strategic competence provides the link between one’s language knowledge and the external situation, and Basic considerations in assessing writing 43 Table 3.

For the native speaker of Italian learning English, on the other hand, it is much more likely that knowing how to write in English will be practically useful in a real-life situation.

Instead of attempting an all- encompassing definition, then, it may be more useful to begin by delineating the situations in which people learn and use second languages in general and second-language writing in particular, and the types of writing that are likely to be relevant for second-language writers. Learn more about Amazon Giveaway. To ask other readers questions about Assessing Writingplease sign up. Charles Alderson and Lyle F. Empirical item investigation involves the identification of factors that affect item difficulty and discrimination Carroll,cited in Cha- pelle, – that is, how easy or difficult it is to receive a high score on a particular test item or task, and how well the item or task discriminates among high-ability and low-ability test takers.


A formal evaluation of students writing abilities is important for language teachers in order to assess the pedagogical needs of their students.

Knowledge of semantic relations across clauses D. In this case, the test developers may decide that authenticity is less of a consideration than other aspects of usefulness such as reliability. This chapter looks at the nature of writing ability from several perspectives: This book provides an excellent resource for any teacher teaching writing.

Amazon Advertising Find, attract, and engage customers. As Grabe and Kaplan point out, linguists and educational researchers have historically held contradictory posi- tions about the relationship between writing and speaking: Writkng line of research indicates that good writers spend more time planning and revising their work than novice writers, and tend to edit their The nature of writing ability 23 writing for content and organization rather than simply making surface changes to the text.

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Classroom writing assessment 9 Portfolio assessment 10 The future of writing assessment Bibliography Index ix Series Editors’ Preface Writing, which was once cshing the domain of the elite and well- educated, has become an essential tool for people of all walks of life in today’s global community. In the ensuing five years I gave birth to my second child, moved with my family from Los Angeles to Atlanta to start a new job, bought a house, rejoiced with my much-loved father when he found and married the woman of his dreams, and mourned with my new stepmother a year later when Dad was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer and passed away.

In this chapter, we turn to a consideration of the nature of writing ability. As discussed above, the relevant characteristics for language testing include language knowledge i.