ERIC Number: ED214379
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1981-Aug
Reference Count: 0
Backwash Effects of Language-Testing in Primary and Secondary Education.
A debate has been carried on in Dutch educational circles about the widespread use of multiple-choice tests, and a number of objections have been raised against the use of such tests. This paper reports on research into the validity of the objections, in particular with respect to the possible effect of multiple-choice tests on the teaching of Dutch as a native language, French, German, and English. The objections dealt with are the following: (1) the possible discriminatory effect of multiple-choice tests; (2) the supposed impoverishment of education through the use of such tests; (3) the risk of impoverished teaching methodology; (4) the possible loss of certain complex skills such as reading; (5) the prominent place of multiple-choice tests at the end of secondary education with the consequent possible overuse of the tests as practice material; (6) the possible influence of multiple-choice tests on the study habits of students; and (7) emotional aspects of the tests, particularly an increased fear of test taking. The overall conclusion seems to be that in the Netherlands many initial fears about multiple-choice testing were not based on facts. Furthermore, the Dutch system has continued the use of other testing methods along with the multiple-choice variety. (AMH)
Publication Type: Speeches/Meeting Papers; Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the World Congress of the International Association of Applied Linguistics (6th, Lund, Sweden, August 9-15, 1981).