Language Testing


What is a Test?

A test can be defined as any one of the following:

procedure for critical evaluation; a means of determining the presence, quality, or truth of something;
series of questions, problems, or physical responses designed to determine knowledge, intelligence, or ability.
basis for evaluation or judgment:

So we could conclude that testing is a form of assessment used for evaluation purposes

Role of Testing in Education

Tests can be used in education to achieve any of the following purposes:


is the teacher/school actually doing what it claims to be doing?

information on results of teaching:



positive effects of backwash — change and improvement

negative effects of backwash — teaching for the test

Costs of inaccurate testing

Financial and social

Gate-keeper role of testing:

effect on peoples’ lives

What is a Language Test?

What is true of testing in general is also true of language testing.

Images of language tests usually involve examination rooms, test papers, desperate scribbling and racing against the clock to finish on time or waiting nervously in an uncomfortable chair to be called into an interview …

But there is more to language testing than this.

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By azu