ERIC Number: EJ1013089
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2013
Reference Count: 9
On Keeping the Target Language in Language Teaching: A Bottom-Up Effort to Protect the Public and Students
Glisan, Eileen W.
Modern Language Journal, v97 n2 p541-544 Sum 2013
The issue of high-stakes testing for teachers has been a debated topic in the larger educational arena for some time now and certainly has the potential to spark a lively argument by language professionals in this "Modern Language Journal (MLJ) Perspectives" venue. In his popular text, "A Rulebook for Arguments" (2009), Weston asserts that arguments should emanate from "reliable premises" and "substance, not overtones" (pp. 4-5). With this in mind, this author combines her commentary on the issue of high-stakes language proficiency testing with clarifications to several inaccuracies, incomplete information, and omissions in the Burke position paper, without which any healthy debate about this topic will be rendered not only unproductive but perhaps, more importantly, ethically misleading to the readers of the "MLJ." These clarifications are based on her knowledge of the standards as a result of working with them for over a decade in a national leadership role, and they are provided to situate the argument within the appropriate context, particularly for those readers not familiar with the National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education (NCATE) and the "ACTFL/NCATE Program Standards for the Preparation of Foreign Language Teachers" (ACTFL, 2002). The author concludes that above all, language professionals should protect the public and students by continuing bottom-up efforts to produce qualified language teachers who meet the profession's expectations for language proficiency as a necessary prerequisite for entering classrooms.
Descriptors: Second Language Learning, High Stakes Tests, Persuasive Discourse, Language Proficiency, Language Tests, Ethics, Standards, Periodicals, Leadership Role, Professional Associations, Language Teachers, Second Language Instruction, Teacher Education
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Opinion Papers; Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: N/A
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