Reading material  and Question


1.     Brown, H. D. 2010. Designing classroom language tests, pp. 52-84.

          Do a Google search and type in ‘ESL assessment.’ Scan your hits and see if you can identify (i.e. list) some of the various forms of assessments that could be a source for information on the effectiveness of teaching and learning (some of the links to sites offer quizzes, tests, and interactive assessments). Consider and discuss how input from different kinds of assessments could be useful to you as an instructor. Try out going to the address given on page 342 of the Brown text for the MLAT. What can you say about the validity and ethics of aptitude tests? Go to page 53 in the Brown text and answer question #3 on ‘objectives.’  Use information from the text to support your ideas.  What are TWO (2) major considerations to keep in mind when designing your own form of evaluation for your classroom? Explain.


2.     Brwon, H. D. 2010. Standards-based assessment, pp. 85-102.



              Go over the appendix to Brown’s chapter 4 (pp. 85-102). Here you will find sample items from four different language proficiency tests. Analyze a test of your choice in terms of a) content validity, b) face validity, and c) authenticity. What would you say is the major concern regarding the use of standardized testing with ESL learners?







3.   Flippo, R. F. 2014. Assessing affective, linguistic, and other qualitative information, pp. 41-100.


                      Identify what you think are some major points made by the author in this chapter (1-3?). Briefly discuss any apparent connection to what you have been reading in the main texts. How is the chapter content relevant to you own practice when teaching/assessing ELLs? How would you address/ apply what you have read in your own present/ future praxis? At the end of each chapter you will find a section titled “Questions for reflection and response.” Choose any two (2) questions from this section to address as part of your entry for this module.





4.     *Gottlieb, M. 2006. Assessing oral language and literacy development, pp. 41-62.


Take time to write a reaction/ reflection to what the author says. What are some of the major concepts presented? Anything that was of particular interest to you? How so? What do you think about some of these ideas? Do you agree/ disagree with what the author states? Why? Elaborated briefly on your response.  Could you identify any connections to what the authors in the other texts are saying? Any inferences or conclusions that you can draw based on your reading of this chapter?


5.     Chapter 3 focuses on considerations pertinent to designing language tests. Think of any experiences you have had learning another language.  Did you have a chance to write journals as part of your learning?


Have you taken a language aptitude test? How about a ‘standardized test? Any particular recollections you may have about the experience? Do you think this was a ‘helpful’ activity in terms of your overall 2L proficiency? Why? How does your own experience relate to the information in the text? Go to the following site at, Share with the class your thoughts on the arguments made in this article.


If you know an ESL teacher or student, ask him or her about their understanding of ‘testing’ in evaluating student progress.  Ask if testing has any advantages and/or any disadvantages over other possible evaluation options. Share what you learned with your classmates.






6.      Make a list of five (5) new terms you learned from your readings. Write about two sentences defining each of these terms/ concepts.


7.     Discuss the meaning of Brown’s claim that ‘test-takers are political subjects in a political context’). Why is it said that large-scale standardized resting is the ‘agent of cultural, social, political, educational, and ideological agendas.’ Share one way in which you think that teachers may respond to political agendas in regards to standardized testing.


              Take time to visit the website of the National Center for Fair and Open Testing (Brown, p. 111) at Go to the fact sheets link at and choose the one that is of most interest to you. Briefly share with the class which sheet you selected and what are some of the points being made. How is this of particular relevance to assessment of ESL learners?


Consider the list of critical language testing issues mentioned by Brown (pp. 98-100). Which did you find most important/ relevant to you as a professional. Elaborate.

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