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DRPS : Course Catalogue : Moray House School of Education and Sport : Education

Postgraduate Course: Language Testing (EDUA11045)

Course Outline
SchoolMoray House School of Education and Sport CollegeCollege of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences
Credit level (Normal year taken)SCQF Level 11 (Postgraduate) AvailabilityAvailable to all students
SCQF Credits20 ECTS Credits10
SummaryLanguage testing aims to provide an introduction to important issues in language testing (through relevant literature), practical experience of designing language test items (through a test design project), a wider understanding of research in the field of language testing (based on current research articles) and an additional insight into socio-cultural and ethical aspects of language testing.
Course description The course aims to cover these topics:

1. Accountability, validity and fairness in language testing.

2. Reliability and rating scales.

3. Assessing productive skills (writing and speaking)

4. Assessing receptive skills (listening and reading)

5. Testing techniques and procedures

6. Evaluating test items.

7. Considering ethics.

The course will be taught through a workshop-based interaction with a focus on group interaction. Students are also expected to engage with the topic outside the class, for example by working in small project groups. The outcomes of this engagement will be directly relevant for their written assignment.

The course links directly into knowledges established through previous modules of the programme. For example, it enhances the understanding of language skills and system. It aligns language assessment within the larger context of learning outcomes and curriculum aims and investigates how language is learned and thus how it should be tested.
Entry Requirements (not applicable to Visiting Students)
Pre-requisites Co-requisites
Prohibited Combinations Other requirements None
Information for Visiting Students
High Demand Course? Yes
Course Delivery Information
Academic year 2024/25, Available to all students (SV1) Quota:  0
Course Start Semester 2
Course Start Date 13/01/2025
Timetable Timetable
Learning and Teaching activities (Further Info) Total Hours: 200 ( Lecture Hours 8, Seminar/Tutorial Hours 8, Supervised Practical/Workshop/Studio Hours 8, Programme Level Learning and Teaching Hours 4, Directed Learning and Independent Learning Hours 172 )
Assessment (Further Info) Written Exam 0 %, Coursework 100 %, Practical Exam 0 %
Additional Information (Assessment) One summative assignment adding up to 4,000 words consisting of different parts, for example, a number of reflective journals on the test project, demonstrating critical development of knowledge and understanding of test concepts, and a comparison of two language tests, demonstrating critical awareness of issues regarding different types, domains and purposes of language tests, or similar issues.
Feedback Students submit an aspect of their reflective writing to provide feedback on the nature of critical reflection.
No Exam Information
Learning Outcomes
On completion of this course, the student will be able to:
  1. show familiarity with a wide range of current ideas and methods in language testing.
  2. relate them to theories and assumptions about language, and learning, and human abilities.
  3. have a basic competence in writing classroom tests and evaluating published tests.
  4. use tests as research tools, e.g. in formative curriculum evaluation.
  5. show familiarity, at a basic level, with the concerns of professional test writers.
Reading List
Baxter, A. (2009). Evaluating your Students. London: Richmond.
Fulcher, G. (2010). Practical Language Testing. London: Hodder.
McNamara, T., Knoch, U., & Fan, J. (2019). Fairness, Justice, and Language Assessment: The Role of Measurement. Oxford University Press.
Coombe, C. (Ed.). (2012). The Cambridge guide to second language assessment. Cambridge University Press.
Fulcher, G. (2015). Re-examining language testing: A philosophical and social inquiry. Routledge.
O┬┐Sullivan (ed.) (2010). Language Testing: theories and practices. Palgrave Macmillan.
Taylor, L., Weir, C. (2008). Multilingualism and Assessment. Cambridge University Press.
Tsagari, D., & Banerjee, J. (Eds.). (2016). Handbook of second language assessment (Vol. 12). Walter de Gruyter GmbH & Co KG.
Additional Information
Graduate Attributes and Skills Students develop their evaluative skills through the critical engagement with existing language tests.
Students develop their communication skills through project group work on developing language tests.
Student develop their autonomous learning skills through the project group work.
Keywordslanguage testing construct items validity
Course organiserDr Claudia Rosenhan
Tel: (0131 6)51 6464
Course secretaryMr Ethan Williamson
Tel: (0131 6)51 6265
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