ERIC Number: ED238299
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1983
Reference Count: 0
An Indirect Test of Oral Proficiency.
Herzog, Martha; Shaw, Victor
The development of an indirect oral proficiency test for foreign languages by the Defense Language Institute is described. The technique uses taped questions to elicit answers, also taped, that are evaluated according to the Foreign Service Institute's oral proficiency rating scale of 0 to 5. Tape recordings are used because of the large numbers of individuals tested, and questions are carefully phrased to elicit relevant language and compensate when possible for the lack of interviewer-student interaction. The test covers proficiency to Level 3, beyond which point students are tested individually. Eighteen questions are included. Nine (three at each level) are informational, with response times varying with the difficulty of the linguistic task. Six role-playing situations (two at each level) are presented, with reasonable complications built in to elicit as much language as possible. These questions have been found to be valid despite their limitations. The remaining questions are devoted to the use of pictures to produce language at all levels, counter typical avoidance of certain language features, and extend the language sample. The test takes about 45 minutes, and the examinee moves from Level 1 to 3 through the three alternating formats. It has been developed for use in Russian, Korean, Modern Standard Arabic, Polish, French, German, and Serbo-Croatian, and validated in Russian and Korean. (MSE)
Descriptors: Adult Education, Arabic, Audiotape Recordings, Class Size, Classification, Difficulty Level, French, German, Interviews, Korean, Language Proficiency, Language Tests, Oral Language, Polish, Questioning Techniques, Rating Scales, Role Playing, Russian, Scoring, Second Language Instruction, Serbocroatian, Speech Skills, Test Construction, Test Validity, Testing
Publication Type: Reports - Descriptive; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers: Defense Language Institute CA
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the Modern Language Association (100th, New York, NY, December 27-30, 1983).