Developing assessment literacy of teachers of languages: A conceptual and interpretive challenge
Angela Scarino, Research Centre for Languages and Cultures, School of Communication, International Studies and Languages, University of South Australia
Volume 6, Issue 1, 2017
Abstract: The teaching and learning of (foreign) languages in the context of globalisation is at a juncture in Australian education where fundamental changes in the field present distinctive challenges for teachers. These changes necessitate a reconceptualisation of the constructs and alter the very nature of assessment: the conceptualisation of what it is that is to be assessed, the processes used to elicit evidence of student learning and the frames of reference that provide the context for making judgments about students’ language learning. In this paper I discuss the shift from communicative language teaching towards an intercultural orientation in language learning. Based on data from a three-yearstudy that investigated teacher assessment of language learning from an intercultural perspective in a range of specific languages in the K– 12 context, I discuss the nature of the challenge for teachers as they develop their assessment practices. This challenge is characterised as both conceptual and interpretive. I conclude by drawing implications for developing the assessment literacy of teachers of languages.
Keywords: Language/s assessment; Assessment for learning; Intercultural language learning; Teacher assessment literacy