Course content

Weeks 1 & 2 Theory and Practice in Language Test Development

Course tutors: Dr Rita GreenDr Tineke BrunfautDr Luke Harding, Dr John Pill

This two-week course will help participants build on their knowledge of language testing by providing theoretical input on issues central to language testing and hands-on opportunities to develop test items / tasks.

The sessions usually include input on:

  • the principles of language testing (validity, reliability and practicality)
  • the testing of reading, listening, writing and speaking
  • standard setting
  • statistics for language testing

Week 3: Classical Test Theory (using SPSS)

Course tutor: Dr Rita Green

This one-week course:

  • introduces participants to the role of descriptive and inferential statistics in language testing
  • familiarises participants with running and interpreting analyses such as item reliability, t-tests and ANOVA. [Note that participants are expected to be familiar with the mechanics of SPSS (data entry) and have an understanding of descriptive statistics.]

Week 4: Introduction to Modern Test Theory (using Winsteps/Facets)

Course tutor: Dr Rita Green

This one-week course in applied statistics:

  • introduces participants to item response theory
  • familiarises participants with the mechanics of Winsteps and Facets
  • offers participants the opportunity to explore and discuss such aspects as convergence tables, variable maps/vertical ruler, item and person statistics (degree of fit, error), distractor analysis, rater measurements etc.

During the morning sessions of both weeks 3 and 4, participants are introduced to the programs and analyses mentioned above while in the afternoons participants are provided with different data sets and supplementary worksheets so they may re-visit these analyses.