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ERIC Number: EJ766762
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2006
Pages: 10
Abstractor: Author
Reference Count: 25
ISSN: ISSN-0015-718X
Language Placement Exams for Heritage Speakers of Spanish: Learning from Students' Mistakes
Fairclough, Marta
Foreign Language Annals, v39 n4 p595-604 Win 2006
Student admission into heritage language programs is usually determined by locally designed placement exams. However, there are no norms to guide language teaching professionals in the assessment of this student population. This study looks at placement exams completed by heritage learners of Spanish at the University of Houston. The quantification and analysis of the verb morphology section from this archival data describe the variation present in the linguistic systems of these learners, making it possible (1) to recognize gaps in the learners' linguistic systems and (2) to identify major differences between academic Spanish and the students' home-variety language. This information may be useful in the design of a placement exam based on empirical research, and may also serve as a guide for syllabi design and teaching practice. (Contains 4 tables and 7 notes.)
American Council on the Teaching of Foreign Languages. 700 South Washington Street Suite 210, Alexandria, VA 22314. Tel: 703-894-2900; Fax: 703-894-2905; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Higher Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Texas