Progress Testing in TESOL
Jun 14, 2010 Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages (T 6028 Views
Progress tests are important for students. These tests assist students and teachers to measure progress in a specific textbook series. Teachers usually prepare their own progress tests, although many textbook series present a number of progress or unit tests.
A teacher may include all four language skills and systems when preparing a progress test. Most tests seem to focus on reading, writing, vocabulary and grammar. There are two ways of preparing questions for an internal progress test:
• Firstly, you can write discrete item questions which test specific individual language points.
• Secondly, you can write integrative questions where a number of items or skills may be tested in the same question.
Discrete items are usually marked objectively, where there is clearly a correct answer and the same marks would be awarded by whoever was marking the question. Integrative tests on the other hand tend to be marked subjectively. A good test is one which appears fair and appropriate to the students. A good test should also not be too difficult to mark and should provide clear results.
Common Discrete Item Question Types:
• Gap-fill e.g. Fill in the space with one word only.
People have been diving without mechanical aids....... ancient times.
• Multiple choice e.g. Decide which word (A, B, C or D) best fits each space.
The elephant has some.......... relatives called mammoths, which lived in the Stone Age.
A. far B. distant C. remote D. distinct
Answer: B. distant
• Matching Pictures and Words e.g. Write the correct word under each picture. [Pictures of various forms of transport]
car taxi train aeroplane ship
• Matching Definitions e.g. Match the word in A with the definition in B (draw a line to join them)
• Changing form and keeping meaning e.g. For each question, complete the second sentence so that it has a similar meaning to the first sentence, using the word given. Do not change the word given. You must use between two and five words, including the word given.
You must do exactly what the manager tells you. carry
You must..................................................instructions exactly.
Answer: carry out the manager's
• Sentence Correction e.g. Read the lines below. Some of the lines are correct and some have a word which should not be there. If a line is correct, put a tick by the number on the answer sheet. If a line has a word which should not be there, write the word on the answer sheet.
1. When I was young, I lived in a place called Durban in
2. South Africa. I was been taken there by my parents when I was young.
• Changing a given word e.g. Read the text. Use the word given in capitals at the end of each line to form a word that fits in the space in the same line.
I'm a great (1)..........of bread. Whenever I smell freshly baked LOVE
bread, it reminds me of my early (2)........ when I used to visit CHILD
the little bakery that my grandfather owned.
• True or False e.g. This kind of question may be incorporated in a reading exercise.
Fernanda left the building on Wednesday evening? True/ False?