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ERIC Number: EJ926674
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2011-Jun
Pages: 13
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 0
ISSN: ISSN-1475-1585
Assessing Listening for Academic Purposes: Defining and Operationalising the Test Construct
Taylor, Lynda; Geranpayeh, Ardeshir
Journal of English for Academic Purposes, v10 n2 p89-101 Jun 2011
English language proficiency tests designed to assess the high-level listening skills required for academic purposes have a surprisingly long history, but recent developments in English language testing indicate a resurgence of interest in assessing academic literacy and aural/oral skills, including the listening skills needed in an academic context. Good quality assessment requires a theoretically-grounded and empirically oriented approach that accounts for both internal "cognitive processing factors" and external "contextual factors" relating to the setting and demands of academically oriented tasks. This paper briefly reviews past and present approaches to testing listening for academic purposes, showing how these reflected prevailing views of language knowledge and use. A socio-cognitive framework is used to analyse the nature of high-level listening ability in a study context, exploring how a construct of academic listening might be defined and how this can be operationalised in the form of valid, reliable and useful proficiency measures. The paper discusses the complex interplay of cognitive, context and scoring validity parameters that present theoretical and practical challenges for test designers and producers. Considerations and constraints associated with the opportunities offered by modern technology, and the implications of these for academic listening test design and format, are also addressed. (Contains 2 tables and 1 figure.)
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A