Large-scale assessment of language proficiency: Theoretical and pedagogical reflections on the use of multiple-choice tests
AbstractThe new requirement placed on students in tertiary settings in Spain to demonstrate a B1 or a B2 proficiency level of English, in accordance with the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages (CEFRL), has led most Spanish universities to develop a program of certification or accreditation of the required level. The first part of this paper aims to provide a rationale for the type of test that has been developed at the Universidad Politécnica de Madrid for the accreditation of a B2 level, a multiple choice version, and to describe how it was constructed and validated. Then, in the second part of the paper, the results from its application to 924 students enrolled in different degree courses at a variety of schools and faculties at the university are analyzed based on a final test version item analysis. To conclude, some theoretical as well as practical conclusions about testing grammar that affect the teaching and learning process are drawn.
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