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ERIC Number: EJ933911
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2011-Jul
Pages: 19
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 35
ISSN: ISSN-0265-5322
Testing English Language Learners under No Child Left Behind
Bunch, Michael B.
Language Testing, v28 n3 p323-341 Jul 2011
Title III of Public Law 107-110 (No Child Left Behind; NCLB) provided for creation of assessments of English language learners (ELLs) and established, through the Enhanced Assessment Grant program, a platform from which four consortia of states developed ELL tests aligned to rigorous statewide content standards. Those four tests (ACCESS for ELLs, CELLA, ELDA, and MWA) are now in use in one or more states, along with a host of other commercially available or locally developed tests. The tests (those developed by consortia as well as the others) are quite similar in many ways, principally in their contents: Listening, Speaking, Reading, and Writing. Most measure these domains with a combination of multiple-choice (MC) and open-ended (OE) test items. This article provides an overview to the four consortium-developed tests as well as an in-depth analysis of one representative example. It also provides a summary of the characteristics of four commercially available tests. Not surprisingly, the four commercially available tests are rather similar to one another and to the consortium-developed tests in terms of content, psychometric characteristics, and development. The primary difference between the two sets is that the commercially available tests tend to report percentile ranks as well as proficiency levels. Now that the Race to the Top program is in place, we face many of the same challenges we faced a decade ago when NCLB was passed. While the Enhanced Assessment Grant competition emphasized summative assessment, the latest competition emphasizes formative assessment, which gives rise to the hope that educators can not only discover students' strengths and weaknesses with these new tests, but do so in a timely manner and have opportunities to use the information constructively. Current work by at least one organization is encouraging in this regard. (Contains 1 note, 3 figures and 11 tables.)
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: Elementary Secondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Laws, Policies, & Programs: Elementary and Secondary Education Act; Lau v Nichols; No Child Left Behind Act 2001; Race to the Top